Palestine offers to avoid intl. conventions

Palestine had applied for accession to 15 international conventions after Israel delayed prisoner release.

Palestine offers to avoid intl. conventions

Palestine will refrain from accession to international conventions if Israel releases some 30 Palestinian prisoners by late April, says Hanna Amireh, an official from the Palestine Liberation Organization.

Amireh, a member of the organization's executive committee, said if Israel sets the already delayed releases of the Palestinian prisoners for no later than April 29, the country will not take further steps toward recognition by the United Nations.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said 15 letters sent by Palestine seeking accession to international conventions were a reaction to the delay in releasing the prisoners.

But Israel said it was the other way around. Israel strongly objected to Palestine's move, which was seen as a step toward international recognition for Palestine as a sovereign state, and cancelled an agreement that would have seen the prisoners released Thursday.

Palestine and Israel had kicked off peace talks last July, with the mediation of the U.S., after a three-year pause. But those talks were blocked as Israel cancelled its promise and Palestine went for the international agreements. 

Amireh also blamed Israel for continuing settlement in Jerusalem, which prevents further steps in peace talks. 

According to Amireh, Israel has offered only a minor part of Jerusalem to be the capital of Palestine, which only contains suburbs of the disputed city, and that was unacceptable to the Palestinians. 

The mediator, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, said his role would be re-evaluated at this "critical" juncture in the talks, as the peace efforts had reached an impasse after the moves from both sides.

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Last Mod: 06 Nisan 2014, 11:25
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