Palestinian spokesman: No two-state solution, no peace


Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’ spokesman said Wednesday they would be willing to work with any Israeli government that recognizes “legitimate international resolutions.” (AFP/Farouk Batiche)

After Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s strong showing in Tuesday’s election which all but ensures he will put together the next governing coalition, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s spokesman said Wednesday that the PA is not concerned with who will be Israel’s next prime minister.

Nabil Abu Rudeineh was quoted by the Bethlehem-based Ma’an News Agency as saying that the Palestinian Authority wants whichever Israeli government is formed to recognize the two-state solution with east Jerusalem serving as the capital of an independent Palestinian state.

Abbas’s speaker said that the PA would continue to work with any Israeli government that recognizes “legitimate international resolutions.”

If the Israeli government should prove that it is not committed to a two-state solution, then there is no chance for a resumption of the peace process, Abu Rudeineh added.

The comments came after Netanyahu had voiced the opinion in the run-up to the election that hewould not allow the formation of a Palestinian state if he were elected prime minister again.

Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat said that, in the wake of Netanyahu’s victory, the Palestinians would push forward with their efforts to seek prosecution of Israel for war crimes at the International Criminal Court.

“It is clear that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will form the next government, and for that, we say clearly that we will go to the Hague Tribunal, we will accelerate, continue and intensify” diplomatic efforts, Erekat told AFP.

Abbas formally applied for admission to the ICC on Jan. 1, and the Palestinians are slated to fully join the court on April 1. In the meantime, the ICC has begun the process for opening an investigation into potential Israeli war crimes during the 2014 Gaza conflict.

Israel has responded by withholding more than $400 million in taxes and customs revenue from the Palestinians.

In comments to AFP, senior PLO official Yasser Abed Rabbo said, following the elections that  “Israel chose the path of racism, occupation and settlement building, and did not choose the path ofnegotiations and partnership between us.”