UN Secretary General’s Hopes for Creation of Palestinian State in 2008 Unreal – Conflicting Sides
Azerbaijan, Baku, 3 May / Trend corr R. Hafizoglu, A. Gasimova, R. Abdullayev/ Palestine's governing FATAH party believes the Palestinian State will be created by the end of 2008. However, there are many doubts about the issue.
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said at the conference on Middle East in London on 2 May said that, as a result of intensive negotiations, independent Palestinian State may be established on the western bank of the Jordan River by the end of 2008.
"Ban Ki-moon is deceiving the international community," HAMAS Spokesperson Sami Abu Zuhri said to Trend . "We do want to create an independent Palestinian State, but now it is impossible," Abu Zuhri said from Gaza in a telephone conversation on 2 May.
He believes that international organizations are not interested in creation of the Palestinian State.
"If international organizations want HAMAS to create an independent Palestinian State and want prosperity for Palestinians, they should exert impact on Israel in order to stop Gaza blockade," Abu Zuhri said. He believes that Israel does not want establishment of independent Palestinian State and is doing its best to prevent this.
Mohammad Udwan, spokesperson of FATAH's Ramallah headquarters, said that all steps intended to establish Palestinian State would be supported. "The steps made to provide stability in Palestine and to establish an independent state will be fruitful."
"Both Palestine and international official organizations will further closely cooperate to establish sovereign Palestinian State," Udwan said to Trend on 2 May.
"We understand the statement by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon about creation of Palestinian State in 2008. Israel is ready to hold peaceful negotiations, we accept Mahmoud Abbas and his Palestinian administration as serious negotiation partners," Eddi Shapira, Israeli Foreign Ministry's official, said to Trend on 2 May.
According to Shapira, now, like it was in the past, Israel is ready to hold peaceful negotiations, as well as to combat terrorism infrastructure and terrorism organizations. "Mahmoud Abbas and his negotiation team are well aware that terrorism infrastructure and terrorism organizations were always combated in parallel with peaceful negotiations," he said.
Shapira said that the only doubtful thing is establishment of Palestinian State in 2008, given virtual split of Palestinian territory into two enclaves - Western bank of the Jordan River and the Gaza Strip. "Unlike Fatah's 'secular nationalists', Palestine's Islamic Resistance Movement Hamas sticking to radical extremist position is certainly not interested in progress during the negotiations. If Hamas really wants peace, its leaders must stop terrorism operations and missile firing against Israeli citizens and must recognize Israeli State.
"It is unlikely that the Palestinians will accept an independent state and be able to provide security guarantees for Israel unless that state is viable," American expert Stephen Zunes said.
"To be viable, it would require an Israeli withdrawal from almost all of the West Bank, with perhaps only minor and reciprocal border adjustments. It would also require Palestinian control of Arab-populated segments of East Jerusalem, a withdrawal of the vast majority of Israeli settlements, a fully contiguous West Bank, an end of the blockade of Gaza, and Palestinian control of its water resources," Stephen Zunes, Professor of Politics University of San Francisco, said to Trend via e-mail on 3 May.
" Israel has thus far rejected all of these criteria despite the fact that they are obliged to do so according to international law and a number of UN Security Council resolutions. With the United States using its threat of a veto to block the UN Security Council from placing these violations under Chapter VII of the UN Charter, thereby allowing international sanctions to force Israel to abide by its international legal obligations, and with the United States -- as Israel's primary military, diplomatic and financial supporter -- refusing to pressure Israel unilaterally, there is no reason to expect that Israel will be willing to allow for a viable Palestinian state to be created," he said.
Dr. Mordechai Kedar, a political scientist in the Begin-Sadat Centre for Strategic Studies at the Israeli Bar-Ilan University, said Ban Ki-moon's statement about creation of Palestinian State by the end of 2008 is just a dream. "A range of problems must be solved to establish Palestinian State," Mordechai Kedar said to Trend on 2 May.
According to Kedar, until the statuses of Israel, Palestinian refugees and the settlements being constructed for Jews are determined, it is too untimely to speak of creation of Palestine State.
Today, Palestine's Islamic Jihad organization was unavailable for interviewing. "Although Islamic Jihad opposes peaceful negotiations with Palestine, they will not harm the talks which may be held," Khaled Batch, an Islamic Jihad leader, said to Turkish press on 1 May.
HAMAS was founded in 1987 in Gaza by sheik Ahmad Yasin for release of Palestine territories. The organization won parliament elections in 2006 with a great majority of votes. At present, Gaza is controlled by HAMAS.
The west bank of Jordan River is under the control of ruling FATAH movement founded in 1956 by Yasser Arafat.