Jerusalem, April 28 (IANS) The Coordinator of the Israeli Government’s Activities in the Territories (COGAT) announced Sunday that it is halting the legalisation of 19 Palestinian outposts in the West Bank due to sanctions enacted on the Palestinian Authority (PA).
The Israeli government had earlier been committed to authorise those outposts in accordance with the resolution upon the resumption of the peace talks last July, according to Xinhua.
“Two weeks ago the plans (to legalise the outposts) was halted due to (Palestinian President Mahmoud) Abbas’ unilateral approach to the United Nations,” COGAT head Major General Yoav Mordechai said, referring to Abbas’ request to join 15 international conventions.
Following Abbas’ request, Israel announced in response that it would enact various sanctions against the PA, including halting their civilian, security and diplomatic-related cooperation.
On Thursday, Israel announced to suspend its negotiations with the PA as a result of the latter’s unity bid with Hamas. Israel is also planning to enact further sanctions due to the developments.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Sunday’s cabinet meeting said that Hamas is “attempting to create an additional holocaust by destroying the state of Israel. It is with this Hamas that Abu Mazen (Abbas) chose to form an alliance with”.
Netanyahu added that Abbas should “choose between Hamas, a terrorist organisation that calls for the destruction of Israel and denies the holocaust, and a true peace with Israel”. He hopes that Abbas “will disavow this alliance with Hamas and return to the path of true peace.”
Netanyahu also said that the Israeli government would not take part in peace talks with a Palestinian government backed by Hamas.