Bill Clinton: 'Move Forward' Past PA Statehood Bid
In what appears to be an attempt to minimize inflammatory statements by Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, a former American president claimed the PA's upcoming statehood bid at the United Nations is simply an “act of frustration.”
Former U.S. President Bill Clinton added in the interview aired Sunday on NBC's “Meet the Press” that he believes “the Palestinians understand that they have to negotiate borders and security with the Israelis.”
He added, however, that at the United Nations Security Council, the U.S. will do what it must to block the bid, and if necessary will exercise its veto power.
The next step, he said, will be to contain whatever damage is created by the PA drive for statehood as it appeals to the General Assembly. “We're either going to go forward or fall back,” he said. “I favor going forward.”
Clinton was the president who was responsible for the secret negotiations that led to the signing of the 1993 Oslo Accords in the presence of then-Palestine Liberation Organization chairman Yasser Arafat and then-Israeli Prime Minister Yitzchak Rabin. The actual documents were signed by Abbas for the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), then-Foreign Minister Shimon Peres – today, Israel's president – for the Jewish State, Secretary of State Warren Christopher for the U.S. and Foreign Minister Andrei Kozyrev for Russia.
The PLO is the legal entity that allegedly is the "sole representative of the Palestinian people." However, although the PA's ruling Fatah faction is a member of this umbrella organization, the Hamas terrorist rulers of Gaza are not. Nor is the Islamic Jihad terrorist organization, nor are any of the Salafist terror organizations that are mushrooming all over the Gaza region.
It was the Oslo Accords that created the Palestinan Authority, which was to include Judea, Samaria and Gaza, together.
The PLO was to renounce terrorism and other violence, including its commitment to the destruction of the State of Israel. The IDF was to withdraw from Gaza and parts of Judea and Samaria.
Final status issues were to be negotiated through direct talks by the two sides within five years, which were to begin by May 1996 at the latest. Those issues included the disposition of disputed parts of Israel's capital city, Jerusalem, the “right of return” for Palestinian refugees living abroad, security, borders and the issue of Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria.
By the PA's announced action at the United Nations this week, some analysts have said that the Oslo Accords may be nullified. Some lawmakers in the State of Israel have also said they will push to formally consider the document nullified if the PA statehood bid succeeds.