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November 29, 2013 12:32

Israeli demand to be recognized as Jewish state inappropriate - Palestinian Ambassador

MOSCOW. Nov 29 (Interfax) - The demand of Israel to be recognized as a Jewish state is an attempt of Tel Aviv to obstruct the Palestinian-Israeli peace process, said Palestinian Ambassador in Moscow Fayed Mustafa.

"Israel sets new conditions every now and then, for instance, it insists on the recognition of Israel as a Jewish state. This is an odd condition about as good as a state demanding to be recognized on the basis of religious features," says the Ambassador's article dedicated to the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People observed on November 29. The article was obtained by Interfax.

"The Israeli demand was put forth by [Israeli Prime Minister] Mr. Netanyahu only three years ago seeking to obstruct the peace process," the diplomat continued.

"If they want to rename Israel something else, they should file the name change request with the United Nations," he suggested.

The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) recognized the State of Israel back in 1993 in the course of the mutual recognition process, which prepared the ground for signing the Oslo Accords, Mustafa recalled.

"The Arab countries that signed a peace treaty with Israel [Egypt and Jordan] were not required to recognize Israel as the Jewish state," he added.

"By the way, advisors to U.S. President Harry Truman asked him in 1948 to recognize the Jewish state but he crossed out that [name] and wrote "The State of Israel" instead," Mustafa said in his article.

The diplomat dismissed accusations of the alleged Palestinian hindering of the political settlement with Israel.

"We do not set preconditions for the resumption of the negotiations but we want Israel to honor the commitments it undertook under the earlier agreements, the roadmap, the Middle East Quartet's statements and international legal resolutions as a whole," he said.

"We honor our commitments and reckon with the conditions set by the international community, and no one can accuse us of hindering the negotiations and the political process," the diplomat wrote.

He accused Israel of not being serious about negotiations with the Palestinians.

"Sixteen rounds of negotiations with the Israelis have been held but we cannot say that any significant results have been achieved as of yet," he said.

"Every practical step Israel takes clearly signals that it is not being serious, especially the settlement activity of Israel which continues to build thousands of homes on the Palestinian lands where an independent Palestinian state is supposed to be created," Mustafa said.

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