Report: Palestinians May Abandon Demand for Settlement Freeze

Instead Seeks to Start Peace Talks on Obama's Mention of 1967 Borders

Reports coming out of the Associated Press claim that the Palestinian Authority is ready to abandon its demand for a settlement expansion freeze by Israel, and would start peace talks if Israel is simply willing to accept President Obama’s recent mention of the 1967 borders as the start of negotiations.

The last round of direct peace talks ended in September when Israel restarted its settlement expansions in earnest. At the time Palestinian officials said it was impossible to negotiate the creation of an independent state while Israeli officials were carving more and more land out of that potential state.

But while Israelis have ruled out ever freezing settlement expansion again, they don’t seem any more likely to embrace peace talks along the 1967 borders. President Obama’s mention of the borders was condemned by Israel, and immediately abandoned by Obama.

Indeed Israel’s escalated demolitions of Palestinian homes in the Jordan Valley suggests that the nation is getting more aggressive in carving out portions of the West Bank it intends to annex outright. Even if the talks do restart, the current Israeli government is unlikely to make any concessions in that regard.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.