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      Iran: Israel-PA Peace Talks are a Bad Idea

      “The occupying Zionist regime is basically not ready to pay the price for peace,” says Tehran
      By Arutz Sheva
      First Publish: 7/21/2013, 4:46 PM

      Iranian president-elect Hasan Rouhani
      Iranian president-elect Hasan Rouhani
      Reuters

      Iran on Sunday voiced opposition to a US-mediated resumption of peace talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA), predicting the Jewish state would never agree to withdraw from Judea and Samaria.

      Tehran "along with Palestinian groups expresses its opposition to the proposed plan and it's certain that the occupying Zionist regime will utterly not agree to withdraw from the occupied lands," foreign ministry spokesman Abbas Araqchi was quoted by local media as saying.

      "Past experience shows that the occupying Zionist regime is basically not ready to pay the price for peace since war mongering and occupation lie at its very core," he added.

      US Secretary of State John Kerry announced on Friday that Israeli and PA negotiators had agreed to meet to prepare a resumption of direct peace talks, stalled since 2010. The exact basis for Kerry's plan remains unknown.

      The Iran-backed Islamist movement Hamas which runs Gaza rejected a return to talks, saying Abbas had no legitimate right to negotiate on behalf of the Palestinian people.

      Iran rules out a two-state solution and has its own vision of how to resolve the six-decade-old conflict between Israel and the PA.

      "The end of occupation ... self-determination for the Palestinians, the return of all refugees to their ancestral land, and the creation of an integrated Palestine with Al-Quds (Jerusalem) as its capital," Araqchi reiterated.