Saturday, 18 June 2011

Renouncing the Oslo Accords - who whom?

DEAR SIR,

You report that, in the event of a UN vote on Palestinian statehood, Israel will retaliate by renouncing the 1993 Oslo Accords and all agreements signed thereafter (‘Israel warns Palestinians all deals are off if UN vote goes ahead’, 17 June). In the same way that your report also mentions that the negotiations of last September failed “after Israel refused to extend a temporary and partial freeze on settlement construction”, Israel is unfairly portrayed as the stubborn child who throws its toys out of the pram at the slightest provocation.

The explicit intention of the Oslo Accords was that any future peace settlements between Israel and the Palestinians would be arrived at “through the agreed political process” – that is, through bilateral negotiations. If the Palestinians go ahead with their bid for statehood at the UN, it is they who will be renouncing the Oslo Accords, not Israel. So when Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said that Israel would “no longer be committed” to past agreements, it was a statement of fact, not a threat.

JACOB CAMPBELL, York
Press Officer, UKIP Friends of Israel

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