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Talks with Israel harm Palestinians

5 August 2010 8:00

A senior Palestinian leader in Israeli detention says negotiations with Israel have reached a gridlock and that further talks will harm Palestinian national interests.

“I hereby say clearly that neither direct nor indirect negotiations are feasible because there is no partner on the Israeli side,” Marwan Barghouti stated on Wednesday, Ma’an news agency reported.

“Israel has no leaders like Charles de Gaulle or Frederik de Klerk, but instead there are extremist leaders who are adherent to a mentality of occupation, settlements, and racism,” he told his lawyer Elias Sabbagh at the Hadarim detention center.

The prominent Fatah leader called on rival Palestinian factions to reach a unity deal and reactivate the popular resistance movement in cooperation with international solidarity movements as a viable alternative to “fruitless negotiations.”

Barghouti, who is serving several life terms in Israeli prisons, criticized the Palestinian Authority for ignoring the Palestinian prisoners and “not exerting the least effort” for their release. “The prisoners’ case is not on the agenda of the Palestinian political echelon. They do not mention it in international political circles.”

“It is sad that the case of one captured Israeli is given more attention than the case of more than 8,000 Palestinian prisoners including one third of the Palestinian lawmakers,” he regretted.

Barghouti further criticized his fellow Fatah members for failing to address corruption within the movement and deferring local elections in the West Bank, saying the party’s central committee had “failed to organize the movement from the inside, which is a dangerous indicator.”

“It is obvious they have not learned from their previous experiences as they are repeating the same mistakes.”

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