The Palestinian leadership will not agree to anything less than a fully-autonomous state with East Jerusalem as its capital, will not cave into pressure and will not relinquish its national rights, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said Saturday.
The Fatah Central Committee held a special meeting Saturday to discuss the results of Abbas' Washington meeting
with US President Barack Obama in the beginning of the week.
The committee members expressed their support of Abbas, and called for an Israeli withdrawal from the West Bank, leaving neither military nor civilian presence there. They also called to find a "just" solution to the Palestinian refugees issue, based on UN Resolution 194. The committee members also rejected Israel's demand for recognition as a "Jewish state."
They expressed their commitment to the continuation of the peace process within the original American timeframe - that ends on April 29. They stressed that Israel must free the fourth and final group of Palestinian prisoners at the scheduled date (March 29), and rejected Israeli calls to condition the release with the extension of peace talks, saying the prisoner release was conditioned initially with the Palestinians' promise not to seek UN recognition in the duration of the negotiations.
Abbas' meeting with Obama at the White House dealt with the American attempt to extend peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians and to avoid a diplomatic crisis that would affect the entire region.
"The Palestinians recognized the State of Israel in previous accords," Abbas stressed at the beginning of that meeting. "Israel can show it is serious by releasing the prisoners, as it promised."
The Fatah Central Committee meeting opened with Abbas' spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeineh stating that the Washington meetings included the exchanging of ideas, but that the Palestinians did not receive a written document from the Americans.
"If such a document is received, it will be the center of the Palestinian leadership's discussions," he said.
The meeting started with a moment of silence for the three Palestinians who were killed in Jenin
from IDF fire overnight Friday. The committee members condemned the IDF raid and demanded the international community, and particularly the US, interfered to "stop Israel's crimes and the dangerous violation of the Palestinian people's rights."