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Israeli defense ministry official:”no less severe than war”

A senior Israeli defense ministry official has warned that Israel could face isolation “no less severe than war” should the UN recognize Palestine as an independent state this September.

“Israel’s isolation in September, the beginning of the isolation, will be no less severe than war,” said chief of Israel’s diplomatic-security bureau General Amos Gilad behind closed doors, Haaretz reported Monday.

He also hinted that that the deadlock in Israeli-Palestinian direct talks was likely to bring about a third Intifada. “If you don’t enter negotiations, you gain stability, but also international isolation.”

“The isolation will legitimize the clashes that could erupt from a coincidental event or incident that with Twitter and Facebook could spark an entire fire,” he said.

Direct talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority were re-launched in the US in September 2010 but were suspended later after Israel refused to extend a partial freeze on its settlement activities.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu refused to extend the partial 10-month moratorium on the settlement expansion projects, which expired last September.

Acting PA Chief Mahmoud Abbas said he would not return to negotiations as long as Tel Aviv continues its illegal settlement projects.

Palestinians say that the settlement activities are being carried out to render unfeasible the establishment of an independent Palestinian state.

Abbas said on March 31 that the PA intends to work on the recognition of an independent Palestinian state at the UN General Assembly this September if no accord is reached between the PA and Israel and if serious talks do not resume.

More than 100 countries have so far officially recognized Palestine as a state based on the 1967 borders, the boundaries that existed before the Israeli regime captured East al-Quds (Jerusalem), the West Bank, and the Gaza Strip.

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