PA Official: Israel's 'Government of War' Will Bury Two-state Solution

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Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat at a news conference in the West Bank city of Ramallah, on Jan. 2, 2012.Credit: Reuters

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s new coalition is an extreme government that will bury the two-state solution, senior figures in the Palestinian Authority say.

The Israeli government “will be one of war which will be against peace and stability in our region,” chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat told AFP.

The senior Palestinian official said the right-leaning government will “set its sights” primarily on West Bank settlement expansion.

“Netanyahu is vehemently leading the charge to bury the two-state solution,” added Erekat in a statement reported by WAFA, the Palestinian news agency. Erekat singled out Habayit Hayehudi’s Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked, saying “The presence of the extremist Shaked, of the ultra-Orthodox and of settlers ... is proof that it’s a government of war, and against peace and stability.

“The face of a new form of racist, discriminatory Israel has been revealed,” said Erekat in the statement, which went on to “call on the international community to safeguard the two-state solution by stop treating Israel as a state above the law.”

Nabil Abu Rudeina, spokesman for PA President Mahmoud Abbas, said the new government would have to choose between settlements and peace negotiations.

“The Palestinian leadership is waiting for consultations to be completed with Arab countries to submit another resolution to the UN Security Council to end the occupation, in addition to preparing cases against Israel to be filed in the International [Criminal] Court,” he said, adding: “The Palestinians will continue their intensive action in the international arena, precisely in light of the right-wing-settlement character of the new government.”

The PLO Executive Committee said: “The new Israeli government constitutes a clear sign that Israel is heading in the direction of deepening the occupation and expanding the settlements and increasing racism against the Palestinian people. The senior members of the new government in Israel and its signs are no different than the most senior of racists who were in apartheid countries like South Africa and even more extreme. The international community must diplomatically shun the extreme right-wing government in Israel.”