PFLP Calls for Palestinian Firmness on Jerusalem, Refugees
The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) called on Palestinian negotiators at the Camp David peace summit Friday to "remain firm" in their stance on the future status of Jerusalem and on the right of refugees to return home, reported AFP.
The PFLP is one of the three principal components of the Palestine Liberation Organization but opposes Palestinian President Yasser Arafat's policy of rapprochement with Israel.
In a statement to AFP, the PFLP spokesman, Maher al-Taher, highlighted the "need to remain firm on the Israeli withdrawal from (east) Jerusalem and the right of return of (Palestinian) refugees."
He insisted that "concessions on Jerusalem and the refugees would be unacceptable to the Palestinian people."
Taher added that "any accord that does not satisfy the fundamental demands of the Palestinian people -- notably the rights of return of refugees and that of a state with Jerusalem as its capital -- has no chance of success."
The future status of Jerusalem has been one of the thorniest issues at the Camp David summit between Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak and Palestinian President Yasser Arafat and almost led to the collapse of the talks.
Israel occupied and annexed east Jerusalem in the 1967 Six Day War and claims it as part of its eternal undivided capital, a position not recognised by the international community.
The PFLP, a leftist faction of the PLO based in Damascus, is led by Abu Ali Mustapha, who replaced the group's founder, Georges Habash, who retired from politics earlier this month.
Meanwhile, an authoritative Palestinian source dismissed on Friday suggestions that the Camp David Middle East summit could end with a partial deal that left the disputed status of Jerusalem for further talks, according to Reuters.
“There will be no deal without Jerusalem. We will not accept delaying the issue of Jerusalem,” the official, in touch with the Palestinian delegation, told Reuters on the 11th day of the secretive summit, rebutting Israeli reports – (Several Sources)
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