Photo: Asi Cohen, Avi Chai
MK Tibi
Photo: Asi Cohen, Avi Chai
MK Tibi warns of intifada if talks fail
Arab-Israeli lawmaker senses 'bottled-up rage on the Palestinian street over the occupation'; says Netanyahu government 'not a partner for peace'

The collapse of the upcoming round of peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians may lead to the eruption of another intifada, Knesset Member Ahmad Tibi (United Arab List-Ta'al) warned on Monday.


Tibi, who served as an advisor to deceased Palestinian Authority chairman Yasser Arafat and remains close to the Palestinian leadership in Ramallah, said he has sensed the "bottled-up rage on the Palestinian street over the occupation and the missing of the opportunity."


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In an interview with Ynet, the Arab-Israeli lawmaker also addressed the expected release of Palestinian prisoners as gesture to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas ahead of the peace talks. He claimed the reports that Israel will release some 80 prisoners who have been held for more than 20 years are inaccurate.


Tibi urged the government to release all 104 Palestinian prisoners who were incarcerated before the signing of the Oslo Accords, saying its refusal to do so would "jeopardize at this early stage the first meeting in Washington."


The MK told Ynet he was "very skeptical regarding the chances of the process, as is the Palestinian leadership, which consented to the international efforts, particularly after the European Union reached a historic decision" to ban the funding of Israeli entities operating beyond the 1967 lines.


"I still believe the current Israeli government is not a partner for a diplomatic agreement and I doubt (the next round of talks) will succeed," he said.



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