(MENAFN - Arab News) Jerusalem: palestinian negotiators have warned they may pass responsibility for their territory back to occupying power israel if peace talks remain stalled a senior palestinian official said sunday.
the official said the palestinians told us peace envoy martin indyk on friday that unless israel releases palestinian prisoners as agreed and freezes settlement building they could dismantle the western-backed palestinian authority (pa) of president mahmoud abbas.
'the palestinians informed indyk that if this israeli intransigence continues they have several options to resort to" the palestinian official told afp on condition of anonymity.
'first handing the keys of the pa to the un so it will become in charge of the palestinian people and the state of palestine which is under occupation or that the (israeli) occupation assumes again full responsibility for everything."
under the 1993 oslo accords which were to have led to an independent palestinian state the palestinians received some autonomy in managing their day-to-day affairs.
israeli commentator nahum barnea writing in yediot aharonot daily on sunday said the palestinian gambit was a desperate one.
'the palestinians are playing their last card" he wrote. 'cancelling ... all their achievements and all the obligations they made under the oslo accords.
'if the palestinians carry out their threat it will have dramatic results. the pa will be dismantled all its security apparatus will be dispersed."
that would oblige israel to fill the vacuum at tremendous financial cost barnea added.
'the (military) will have to find a way to take the pa's place: to set up a police force to take care of education health services water sewage."