Palestinians won't resume negotiations until Israel complies with obligations

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Palestinians cannot resume negotiations to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict until Israel complies with its obligations to stop Jewish settlements and other activities in East Jerusalem.

That is what the envoy of the Palestinian Authority, Ambassador Riyad Mansour, told reporters in New York on Friday.

He says Israel is continuing what he calls its onslaught in Jerusalem where it is demolishing homes, confiscating land, building the wall, and building new Jewish settlements and taking away the identity cards of Palestinians living there.

Ambassador Mansour says Israelis are contemplating depriving tens of thousands of Palestinians of their identity cards as part of the process to make East Jerusalem an exclusively Jewish city.

"Jerusalem is a city of peace. Jerusalem is a city for all religions and what the extremist settlers and the Israeli government is doing is pushing the situation in Jerusalem into an area that we don't know where it will take us, a dangerous area of a possibility of religious war. Now for us, we declare that we cannot go back to negotiation unless all settlement activities, including the natural growth and including in East Jerusalem stop."

Ambassador Mansour says negotiations cannot succeed unless Israel abides by international law and its obligations under the Road Map.

The Road Map, supported by the Middle East Quartet made up of the United Nations, the United States, the European Union and Russia, is a plan to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Diane Bailey, United Nations
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