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'Netanyahu offered temporary Palestinian state'
Senior Palestinian source tells Al-Hayat newspaper prime minister drafted plan to maintain control of more than 40% of West Bank territory in transition period, postpone Jerusalem, refugee issues to future negotiations

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is trying to convince the US administration to accept a plan for an "interim solution" based on a 10-year transition period in which the Palestinian state will be established on temporary borders, the London-based Al-Hayat newspaper reported Saturday.

 

According to the report, which is based on Palestinian sources, the issue of Jerusalem and right of return will not be addressed in the current plan.

 

A senior Palestinian source told Al-Hayat that Netanyahu's negotiations with the US "show that he's trying to put forward a plan which is based on the establishment of a Palestinian state on temporary borders, with the separation fence as a border, while postponing the issues of Jerusalem and the refugees to future negotiations, which will be held after the establishment of a Palestinian state."

 

According to the source, Netanyahu's solution is gradual and will be implemented in the course of more than 10 years. According to the report, Israeli settlement blocks and "their areas of influence" as well as Jerusalem will remain under Israeli control, the Jordan River Valley will be leased for 40 years and IDF bases will remain in entrances to West Bank cities.

 

Keeping 40% of West Bank

The source further added that the plan for a temporary state will allow Israel to maintain control over the eastern border with Jordan and the separation fence as the western border with the Palestinian state. It will also allow Israel to retain its water sources. This means that Netanyahu is interested in keeping more than 40% of West Bank territories for the transition period.

 

It was also reported that Netanyahu presented the Palestinians with his vision for an interim solution which he is now discussing with the US.

 

Another Palestinian official said that Netanyahu's plan is based on two aspects: Security and geography. On the geographical level, Israel will withdraw from Palestinian cities and leave settlement blocks under Israeli control. On the security level, Israel will keep army bases in the Jordan Valley and in entrances to West Bank cities. The two sources did not say what the Palestinians think about the plan.

 

 

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