The Palestinian conference to determine the response to American policy on Yerushalayim and the peace process on Sunday produced fresh denunciations, as Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas called the developing White House peace plan “a slap in the face.”
Abbas confirmed that the U.S. offered the Yerushalayim suburb of Abu Dis as the site for the capital of a future Palestinian state, instead of east Yerushalayim, which the Palestinians have chosen for their capital.
Abbas made the comments at a meeting of the PLO’s Central Council in Ramallah Sunday, where he also vowed that “we will slap back” at the Americans.
However, despite the rhetoric and rumors of sanctions against the U.S. and Israel, a senior member of the PLO’s Executive Committee told Haaretz that there is no expectation of any game-changing moves.
Among the responses reportedly being considered is the possibility of revoking the Oslo Accords and the security coordination with Israel, charging that Israel has breached the accords, thus releasing the Palestinians from their commitments. Israel denies this, and in turn accuses the Palestinians of the same. Meanwhile, Abbas is exploring the prospects of bring the EU or Russia into the Middle East as a substitute for the U.S.
It was yet another indication of the disunity of the Palestinians that neither Hamas, nor Islamic Jihad, for that matter, participated in Sunday’s meeting.