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Hundreds protest negotiations in Ramallah
Published Tuesday 03/07/2012 (updated) 07/07/2012 01:08
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Hundreds of Palestinians protest in Ramallah on July 3.
(MaanImages/Firas Taneineh) Click image to start slideshow
RAMALLAH (Ma’an) -- Hundreds of protesters demonstrated in Ramallah on Tuesday calling on the Palestinian Authority not to negotiate with Israel.

Protesters gathered in Manara square, chanting "The people want to bring down Oslo," referring to the 1993 agreement that established the PA as a 5-year interim administration to govern until a final treaty was reached.

Demonstrators headed to President Mahmoud Abbas' headquarters, the Muqata, carrying Palestinian flags and denouncing talks with Israeli vice premier Shaul Mofaz.

Abbas had been scheduled to meet Mofaz in Ramallah, sparking protests on Saturday, but the meeting was canceled.

Palestinian police violently shut down Saturday's protest, leading to a second protest Sunday against police brutality, which police also violently suppressed.

Tuesday's protest ended peacefully. Security forces in civilian clothes took photos of protesters and police and presidential guards were stationed at the Muqata but forces did not intervene in the demonstration.

A government source told Reuters that police were under orders on Tuesday to allow the protesters to take their message to the gleaming stone walls of Abbas's compound, which is also the burial place of previous president, Yasser Arafat.

"The streets are open to us today, and that's the result of a political decision. They realize the violence before made them look bad," said Ali Nakhle, a student who joined approximately 400 other, mainly youthful protesters in downtown Ramallah.

Activists demand accountability

As well as demanding an end to negotiations with Israel, activists also called on the PA to end its security coordination with Israel which was established in the Oslo Accords.

In a statement, the Palestinians for Dignity group which participated in the protests called for a new strategy of resistance to achieve Palestinian independence.

The group also demanded the formation of an independent committee to hold security forces accountable for attacks on protesters over the weekend.

"We remind the Palestinian Authority that we still toil under the yoke of Israeli occupation, and that it is unacceptable under any circumstance to brutally repress the rights of people at a time when we are facing Israeli aggression all around us," the group said.

"We call upon the Palestinian Authority to return to the masses and to arm itself with the power of its people for the people are its source of strength and legitimacy."

The PA cabinet, meanwhile, reaffirmed its commitment to protecting freedom of opinion and expression in accordance with the law, ministers said after a meeting Tuesday.

In a statement, the cabinet noted that PA Minister of Interior Said Abu Ali said Monday he would form a committee to investigate the violence at the demonstrations.

The cabinet said it would also submit its recommendations to ensure such events are not repeated, and hold responsible those found to have violated the law.

"This comes to reaffirm the continued unity of our people," the statement said.
1 ) Yehuda Solomon / Israel
03/07/2012 21:57
I HIGHLY COMMEND the protestors. They are absolutely, positively 100% RIGHT. I speak the 100%, honest TRUTH. If Yasser Arafat were alive even HE would highly commend them along with Sheikh Ahmed Yassin (1 of the founders of Hamas). We have deceived the Palestinians, the Americans and the world with these damn-near 20 yr.-old Oslo Accords by giving everybody false hopes in believing a (second) Palestinian nation will be established west of the Jordan River. Our settlements in the (cont.)

2 ) outlier / USA
03/07/2012 22:00
Absolutely the best way to maintain the status quo - and eliminate the best way for Palestine to become a country. Palestinians almost never miss a good opportunity to miss a good opportunity.

3 ) Brian Cohen / Israel
03/07/2012 22:02
The Palestinians are back on their roller coaster again. It is the one that was made for them in 1948, and the same one that keeps getting renovated with more downs than ups. Here are the Pals telling us Israelis that they do not want peace, want to tear up any and all agreements, and the only conclusion is that they prefer war. Pathetic.

4 ) Yehuda Solomon / Israel
03/07/2012 22:09
W. Bank (what we call Judea and Samaria) will continue expanding and growing. This year will probably be another record-breaking year for that. Our PM has recently reaffirmed his commitment to more and more settlements. Yes, eventually we ARE going to annex the W. Bank (and Gaza, too, believe it or not) and move the Palestinians OUT. King Abdullah II of Jordan/Palestine says if they move to J/P it would be disastrous. No ... it wouldn't (again ... the TRUTH). Protestors: HANG IN THERE !!!

5 ) Michael / USA
03/07/2012 23:02
They should be protesting that it's time for Abbas to go. He must go. He's been their leader for too long. They should protest to DISSOLVE the government.

6 ) American / US
04/07/2012 00:28
#3 Brian "Here are the Pals telling us Israelis that they do not want peace,". About the only thing PATHETIC in this whole article is the 1993 so called Oslo Accords That was 19 years ago, what has since been achieved? On what achievements towards a 2 state solution do you back up your comment? How many illegal squatter outposts and settlements have been built on stolen land since 93? and this is just the tip of the iceberg .You know the rest of the story. Stop taking people for stupid.

7 ) Ido / occupied Palestine
04/07/2012 01:12
I were in the west bank I would've joined the protest as well.

8 ) Nour / One-State
04/07/2012 01:29
There's no need to "end" or "kill" Oslo - Oslo Accords are already dead, and they died in 2001 when the Zionists over-ran all PA institutions and destroyed a decade of of state-building. Since then, the settlements have expanded to a point that exposed the very purpose of the Oslo Accords, that is to keep Palestinians as slaves and economic dependents. No real sovereignty was on the table... What is needed now is to DEPOSE the corpse of the PA, which are the corrupt elements of Fatah.

9 ) Nour / One-State
04/07/2012 01:45
Puppets Association on its last leg? I certainly hope so. The time to depose the PA, and the Zionist occupation of Palestine, has begun. De-recognize the PA and even the PLO. Neither of them is a legitimate representative of the Palestinian people. The Butler of the occupiers need to understand that there is no alternative to struggle and resistance. Economic independence is only achieved through political independence. Arrest Abbas and the rest of them thugs at Fatah!! Oslo brought disaster

10 ) shirley / australia
04/07/2012 01:52
PA are putting pals in dangerous position now PAkistan has reopened supply lines to NATO all this leads to more pressure on Plas which the US will fully implement PA stalling tcatics are wrong and only serve Isreal and US PA said their strategy of wait and copnstant sidesteppimg will lead to sate it has failed now almost ayr on from UNESCO vote and UN SC BID WHITBECK international lawyer to ABBASS begged him in Jan to go to UNGAand lock pal borders he has notThemomentom is changingnegativeGO UN

11 ) Yehuda Solomon / Israel
04/07/2012 03:22
@ 3) Brian Cohen/Israel, No ... I must be HONEST and tell you you're WRONG. The Palestinian protestors are NOT on a roller coaster again; they're on a perpetual downhill slope with no hope. Between the failure of Palestinian unity to emerge and our intractable conditions for "agreeing" to a (second) Palestinian nation, the protestors are justifiably mad as hell and if I were 1 of them I'd join them. Referencing back to 1948 is not the issue anymore. The PA HAS agreed to recognize (cont.)

12 ) Yehuda Solomon / Israel
04/07/2012 03:34
us as a nation. NO Arab nation or Palestinian would have even done so back in 1948. (The PA has refrained from recognizing as a Jewish/Israelite nation but that IS a Zionist designation which I can understand. The Palestinians--actually, no nation--has to do that. Why not ??? ... because in the final analysis it's UNnecessary and DOESN'T matter even when talking about a Palestinian right-of-return. A sovereign nation is a sovereign nation regardless of any ethnic/religious designation.)

13 ) Albert / Denmark
04/07/2012 07:46
Less demonstrating, less protesting. Get on with working or studying your economy is in tatters, and you are living on aid, go home and produce something.

14 ) Brian Cohen / Israel
04/07/2012 10:32
Well, Yankee #6, the answer is that since 1993 relatively few new settlements have been built on disputed land that used to belong to the Jewish nation. Since 1993 a lot has been accomplished and the Palestinians in Gaza rule themselves, while in the west bank they rule most of their own affairs. If the Palestinians would negotiate and compromise, they'd have a state. Then again, we live here and you pontificate from behind your keyboard 7000 miles away from reality.

15 ) southparkbear / usa
05/07/2012 18:20
i think the palestinian people earned the right to bring in new political terms: first is the negostration, second demotitation

16 ) matt / usa
05/07/2012 18:55
I dont understand why these lands are "disputed ". israel was attacked and they won. Why not say that texas is also diputed lands and it should go back to mexico? or california?

17 ) THEN, NOW, & / The FUTURE
05/07/2012 19:14
1- Yes, the Oslo Accords were a bad deal THEN, but it was the best deal
the PLO could get, given the reality of their circumstances in exile, and

2- Yes, the Negotiations are a bad deal NOW, but again it is the best deal
the PA can get, given the reality of our weakness under occupation, and

3- Yes, the bad deal now will only continue to worsen in THE FUTURE,
as they settlements continue to expand across Palestinian claimed lands !!!

18 ) Stan Squires / canada
05/07/2012 20:32
I am from vancouver,canada and i wanted to say that it has been proven many times negotiating with israel is a complete waste of time.The Oslo Agreement was of no benefit to the Palestinian People and it should be scrapped.The BDS campagne and demonstrations against israeli apartheid from around the world is the way to liberate Palestine.The ISM is helping the Palestinian People also.

19 ) southparkbear / usa
06/07/2012 03:09
shall we call them occupy wall?
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