Mahmoud Abbas' son seeks one state of Jews, Arabs with equal rights

March 19, 2014 at 1:27 PM
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RAMALLAH, West Bank, March 19 (UPI) -- Some Palestinians, including President Mahmoud Abbas' son, are advocating a single state, not two states, where Jews and Arabs would all be citizens.

Tareq Abbas is among a growing number of people who say they believe a chance to create a two-state solution with Israel is gone, peace negotiations are futile and the creation of a single state is more viable, the New York Times reported.

"If you don't want to give me independence, at least give me civil rights," the younger Abbas said in an interview with the Times in Ramallah, West Bank. "That's an easier way, peaceful way. I don't want to throw anything, I don't want to hate anybody, I don't want to shoot anybody. I want to be under the law."

In an interview last month, the Palestinian Authority president said Israel's continued settlement construction in West Bank makes it impossible to convince his son the two-state solution is still viable.

In a December poll by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research, 65 percent of people more than 50 years of age said they supported the two-state solution while 47 percent of those in the 18-to-34 age group expressed the same view.

Tareq Abbas told the Times he thinks his father should abandon U.S.-led peace talks and press for statehood through international organizations and, as a pressure tactic, his father should dissolve the Palestinian Authority, forcing Israel to take full responsibility for the West Bank.

As part of the peace process, Israel is scheduled to release a final group of 30 prisoners March 29. There have been three previous releases. In all, more than 100 prisoners were to be freed.

The Palestinian Authority Minister of Prisoner Affairs Issa Qaraqe Tuesday told Ma'an News Agency any delay in releasing Palestinian prisoners held in Israel would be tantamount to "political blackmail."

However, Israeli Economy Minister Naftali Bennett said on Israeli radio Israel's pledge to release the prisoners was unlikely to occur because of the lack of movement in the peace process.

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