Senior Palestinian: We need to halt talks with Israel
Yasser Abed Rabbo: If the U.S. can't stop Israeli settlement expansion, it can't bring peace.
A senior Palestinian official Thursday called for a halt in negotiations with Israel in response to a recent Israeli decision to intensify settlement activity in Palestinian areas.
Yasser Abed Rabbo, secretary of the Palestine Liberation Organization's Executive Committee and member of the Palestinian negotiating team, told the official Voice of Palestine radio station that the Palestinian Authority should halt talks with Israel as long as it expands settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.
"We cannot continue negotiations and have a political process under an Israel deception and a United States administration unwilling to do anything about it," he said.
"If [the U.S.] is unable to stop [Israel's] settlements, it will not be able to bring peace," he said.
The Palestinian Authority "should generate a major crisis equal to the crisis Israel has generated and we should start by saying enough, we cannot continue with political negotiations," he said.
"This [Israeli settlement] conspiracy is the peak of all conspiracies and it is called negotiations, dialogue and political efforts, yet we do not see any of this on the ground," Abed Rabbo said.
"What we see is changing facts on the ground and taking advantage of the regional and international situation to implement the scheme," he concluded.