Israel focussing only on security: Palestinian official

Ramallah, Sep 4 (IANS) Israel insists on only discussing security issues during the peace talk sessions with the Palestinian side, a Palestinian official said Wednesday.

The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said that Israel refused to discuss any other issues rather than those related to security, Xinhua reported.

On Tuesday, negotiators from both sides met in Jerusalem and Israel presented 17 notes reflecting its vision for security arrangements. The official told Xinhua that Israel proposed to install radars in some areas of the West Bank.

A controversial debate emerged during the talks over the Palestinian rejection of having any Israeli security presence on the future Palestinian state's eastern borders with Jordan, according to the official.

In July, the United States convinced the Palestinians to return to the negotiating table.

The Palestinians did not get an Israeli pledge to stop settlement construction in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. However, Israel freed some long-jailed Palestinian prisoners.

Yasser Abed Rabbo, a member of the PLO's executive committee, said that there were no signs that the negotiations had made any progress so far.

"All scenes of occupation and settlements must be removed in the Palestinian territories," Abed Rabbo told Voice of Palestine radio.

"Otherwise, the political process would collapse and fail."

He ruled out any progress "as long as the US administration doesn't press for achieving a peace deal".


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