What does Increased Palestinian Political Repression say about the Prospects for Peace?

“Put into the perspective of history, dwindling legitimacy is a continuing trend. The Oslo Accords divorced the Palestinian leadership from much of the Palestinian Diaspora, leaving the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) — which turned inward into the PA — representing only four million out of twelve million Palestinians (or roughly 25 percent). While some might not think it necessary that the Palestinian negotiating partner represent Palestinians living outside of the West Bank and Gaza, it is clear that such representation is vital when issues such as the question of refugees is so intimately tied to the resolution of this conflict. This makes Diaspora Palestinians stakeholders in the outcome.

Continued episodes of political repression by PA at the behest of Israel’s reputation, be it during the war in Gaza, the Goldstone debacle or most recently in the lead up to direct negotiations, only underscores the fundamental disparity in the position of the two negotiating partners and suggests that Palestinian domestic political disarray is likely to continue. When push comes to shove, Israel can easily manipulate this situation to claim their weak negotiating partner is unable to guarantee a lasting agreement and Israel would therefore only offer the Palestinians a figment of a state, lacking all sovereignty, while retaining security control over borders and airspace conditions unacceptable to Palestinians.

Only a unified and representative Palestinian partner can extract the minimum necessary concessions from Israel for a viable end of conflict resolution, and currently, as the security apparatus continues to crack down on domestic Palestinian dissent, Israel watches keenly knowing that no such Palestinian partner is on the horizon…”

Yousef Munayyer  – Palestine Center

Read full text: http://www.intifada-palestine.com/2010/09/what-does-increased-palestinian-political-repression-say-about-the-prospects-for-peace/

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