Palestinian PM: Israel doing nothing to help us
Palestinian Prime Minister Salaam Fayyad said on Tuesday that Israel has done nothing on the ground to help his government and he would be "a damn lot happier" if it took concrete actions to do so.
According to Reuters, Fayyad expressed frustration at what he called Israel's failure to ease the lot of Palestinians, including by removing checkpoints on the West Bank. He also said Israeli and Palestinian negotiators had made little progress since Annapolis summit, where Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas decided to re-launch talks aimed at reaching a peace deal by the end of 2008. "Israel has not done a thing materially on the ground to help my government. I say this with sadness," Fayyad said.
"Atmospheres are much better, (but) checkpoints have increased, not decreased," Fayyad said. "We have good meetings, friendly meetings. A lot of promises of 'we will think about this, this makes sense,'" he added. "I am happy when somebody tells you 'you are making sense.' I would be a damn lot happier when I see things begin to happen."
Fayyad added that without better mobility -- including removing some of the hundreds of checkpoints on the West Bank -- the Palestinians would never improve their economy.