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Abbas warns of ICC action if Israel implements settlement plans
Published Tuesday 11/12/2012 (updated) 13/12/2012 12:40
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Turkey's President Abdullah Gul and President Mahmoud Abbas review
a guard of honor during an official welcoming ceremony at the
Presidential Palace in Ankara, Dec. 11. (Reuters/Stringer)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) – President Mahmoud Abbas warned Tuesday that Palestine would file a petition to the International Criminal Court if Israel follows through on announced plans to build settlements in the flashpoint E1 area of the occupied West Bank.

Speaking at a news conference in Ankara, Abbas said, "Israel’s announcement to build settlements on the land of the State of Palestine is an aggressive act and a red line which we will not allow.

"It is a breach of international conventions, namely the Fourth Geneva Convention."

According to the official Palestinian Authority news agency Wafa, Abbas said the Israeli government should decide whether it wants to continue with settlement construction and occupation, or to achieve peace which will secure safety and stability in the region.

“From Turkey we extend a hand for peace and we are ready for serious efforts to achieve this peace," Abbas said, according to Wafa.

“If Israel chooses peace, they will find us completely ready, but if they choose settlement, especially in area E1, we will react differently," Abbas said.

'Palestinians only interested in preconditions'

Israel, meanwhile, said the Palestinians were only interested in formulating preconditions to talks.

"It seems that the Palestinian side is interested in the further development of preconditions. We reject this and are interested to negotiate without preconditions," said Ofir Gendelman, spokesman for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Earlier Tuesday, Nimr Hammad, Abbas' political adviser, reiterated the position that credile negotiations could not resume without a freeze in settlement building.

Gendelman told Ma'an that settlement building was not an obstacle to talks and that international pressure should focus on urging Palestine, not Israel, to return to negotiations.

He also said European condemnation of the plans only emboldened the Palestinians to continue refusing to negotiate, after the EU said it was "deeply dismayed" by the plans.

"Israel does not need international pressure to return to negotiations," Gendelman said. "We must put pressure on the Palestinian side," he said.

Abbas: Turkey backs full statehood at UN

In his remarks in Ankara, Abbas said he was confident that Turkey would support Palestine seeking recognition as full member state in the UN.

"We will continue to consult all our friends in a positive and responsible manner about the future steps," Abbas was quoted as saying by Wafa.

"Our top priority now is to realize our people’s right to freedom and independence ending 65 years of suffering,” he said.
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1 ) southparkbear / usa
11/12/2012 19:23
i am sure lieberman won't sleep tonight

2 ) mohamed / somalia
11/12/2012 19:26
pull the trigger ya ABBAS start being a man and dont be afraid. god with you and the whole world is with you.

3 ) Big Mike / USA
11/12/2012 20:17
How is the implementation going to be interpreted because They are not scheduled to start building for several years from now

4 ) Yehuda Solomon / Israel
11/12/2012 21:16
SO GO TO THE ICC ALREADY !!! What the hell are you waiting for ??? The U.N. recognizes you as a nation ... SO GO !!! You think we give a damn about the ICC or Fourth Geneva Convention ??? ... At this pace, by the time the Palestinians get to the ICC, we'll be done developing E-1 and there will be contiguous settlements and developments in E-2, E-3, E-4 and ALL the way past Jericho east to the Jordan River. That W. Bank will be SPLIT right through its waistline going EAST of Jerusalem.

5 ) There's a Difference between / Resolutions & Ownership
11/12/2012 21:31
The UNGA may have voted Palestine to be a non-member observer state,
but it can NOT create something that never existed ("1967 borders") for that state, and if the ICC is asked to take action, Palestine will have to prove that what it claims (the land within 1967 borders) actually belonged to it !!!

6 ) desertson / UK
11/12/2012 23:48
This shouldn't be a matter of negotation, but justice. Get Israeli war criminals into court The "Yehuda" specimen above shows how charming these people are. They belong in court and then jail. The decent world should enforce all 64 UN Resolutions condemning Israel's crimes and atrocities.

7 ) Urrha / Russia
13/12/2012 07:58
ICC declared Sudan's president to be a war criminal and ordered his arrest...oh. 10 years ago. He remains dictator of Sudan and a welcomed guest in every Arab/Moslem capital. The palestinians are continuing to screw up every opportunity to start building a nation state. What they need is someone who will say, "enough pleading...let us sit with the Jews and try to make the best state we can for now, instead of waiting for the future!"

8 ) Nizar / Tanzania
13/12/2012 09:20
It is the impunity and arrogance of Israelis like yehuda that the world increasingly hate. And that includes your strong allies that you are losing fast. They are getting tired of throwing their tax money at you while you jeer at them and call them dog

9 ) ian / australia
13/12/2012 14:29
One more article with forceful, rational, entirely convincing statements from Abu Mazen, which make sense on EVERY level, legal, moral, you name it...answered by incoherent dissembling from another Israeli "spokesman" ("Gendelman told Ma'an that settlement building was not an obstacle to talks..."). It's like dreamspeak. The whole I/P conflict is a war between these actors: a rational, honest, "modern" party seeking a kind of justice universally understood and enshrined in law...and a weird,

10 ) ian / australia
13/12/2012 14:30
(contd.) backward, amoral entity essentially inhabiting the sick and scary world of Leviticus and Deuteronomy (see #4). With ALL the cards, it's (almost) impossible to see how Israel can lose. But in light of human progress (essentially since the Enlightenment) it's also impossible that it can win.

11 ) Outlier / USA
13/12/2012 20:39
Easier said than done.
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