PA: Annexation will collapse the prospect of a Palestinian state

PA cabinet leader warns against applying sovereignty in Judea and Samaria, says it could destroy efforts to establish a Palestinian state.

Dalit Halevi ,

Mohammad Shtayyeh
Mohammad Shtayyeh

Palestinian Authority (PA) cabinet leader Mohammad Shtayyeh attacked Israel on Thursday and tried to tie the tax money it collects on behalf of the PA to political positions and as a condition for renewing PA-Israel security coordination.

Speaking to the British Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Shtayyeh said that the Palestinian problem is not a matter of money but a matter of rights, dignity and freedom, as he put it.

Shtayyeh called on Britain to recognize the “State of Palestine”, noting that this was the right time for such a move, especially in light of the Israeli annexation plan.

If the annexation plan is implemented, he warned, then the effort to establish a Palestinian state will eventually collapse.

He further stated that the area of the Jordan Valley constitutes 28 percent of Judea and Samaria, and is of great agricultural, tourism and historical importance and the Palestinians will never agree to its annexation to Israel.

The PA is outraged over the coalition agreement between Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Benny Gantz, which stipulates that the government can apply sovereignty over Judea and Samaria in July.

In response to the move, PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas announced recently that the PA was no longer bound by the agreements it signed with Israel and the US, including the security coordination with Israel.

Palestinian Arab officials have been pressuring countries to officially recognize “Palestine”, in a move meant to bypass direct peace talks with Israel. Those calls have grown since the sovereignty plans were announced.