Palestinians set date for mass demonstrations

Palestinians carry the body of Ali Khalifa, 25, killed by the Israeli military, during his funeral in the Qalandia refugee camp near the West Bank city of Ramallah on Monday (AP photo by Majdi Mohammed)


Palestinian officials say they plan to begin mass marches against Israel’s occupation of the West Bank on September 20, the eve of a largely symbolic UN vote expected to recognise their independence, the Associated Press reported.

Palestinian official Yasser Abed Rabbo said leaders hope to draw millions of people into the streets, adding that the day will be the beginning of prolonged demonstrations.

He says the marches will be peaceful. But Israeli leaders fear any unrest could easily spin out of control.

Meanwhile, an Israeli TV station has disclosed that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has agreed to negotiate a border with a Palestinian state based on the pre-1967 ceasefire lines that mark off the West Bank.

A senior Israeli official said he would not deny the report.

Up to now, Netanyahu refused to accept the formula, insisting that Israel would not withdraw from all of the West Bank.

The report said Netanyahu agrees to use the ceasefire line as a basis, while trading territory with the Palestinians to allow Israel to keep its main West Bank settlements, in line with a proposal by President Barack Obama.

The official spoke Monday on condition of anonymity because contacts are ongoing.

The official said Netanyahu insists the Palestinians recognise Israel as a “Jewish state”.

With peace talks stalled, the Palestinians have decided to ask the UN to endorse their independence. The vote will likely be largely symbolic, but the Palestinians believe any international endorsement will isolate Israel. read more

Palestinian leaders approved the protest plan at a meeting in the West Bank on Monday.

Categories: Asia, Palestine

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