Abbas to propose timetable for peace talks with Israel
Published Tuesday 02/09/2014 (updated) 04/09/2014 18:43
Israel's controversial separation barrier surrounds the Ras Khamis
neighborhood of East Jerusalem, on November 12, 2013.
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- President Mahmoud Abbas is set to propose a timetable for peace negotiations with Israel during an upcoming meeting with Arab foreign ministers, a Palestinian official said Tuesday.
Speaking to Jordan's al-Ghad newspaper, Palestinian supreme judge Mahmoud al-Habbash said Abbas wants to garner support from Arab countries for nine months of talks with Israel.
The plan, which Abbas will present in Cairo on Sept. 7, includes three months of negotiations dedicated to agreeing on borders, with the remaining six months focused on refugees, Jerusalem, settlements, security and water, al-Habbash said.
Israel would be expected to freeze illegal settlement construction during the duration of the talks and release the last group of pre-Oslo prisoners.
The talks will aim to set a three-year time-frame for Israel's withdrawal from the occupied Palestinian territory.
"If the Israeli occupation doesn't agree on the plan, the Palestinian side will take legal, diplomatic and political moves to impose peace by force," al-Habbash added.
The latest peace talks collapsed in April after Israel refused to release a final group of veteran Palestinian prisoners.
During the course of negotiations, the Israeli government announced plans for thousands of illegal settler homes, killed over 60 Palestinians, and demolished a total of 508 Palestinian structures, 312 of which were homes.