Ali Waked
October 5, 2009 - 12:00am,7340,L-3785601,00.html

Palestinian sources told Ynet the United States has reiterated its commitment to the Palestinian Authority in recent days to reach a peace deal with Israel within two years, based on the Road Map and the 1967 borders.

The sources said that in light of the PA's position on the Goldstone Report on Operation Cast Lead in Gaza, the Americans said they would continue to pressure Israel in the matter of settlements, and said this would be put into action in the coming days with special Mideast envoy George Mitchell's visit to the region.

The Palestinian Authority and its heads have been the subject of much criticism both from within and from various external Arab sources, who claim the PA is behind the deferral of a vote in the UN Human Rights Council on passing the Goldstone Report to the General Assembly for further action.

PA President Mahmoud Abbas ordered the establishment of a committee to probe the matter, which he himself was accused of being responsible for.

Meanwhile, it was reported that Abbas' scheduled meeting in Damascus this week was likely to be cancelled due to accusations of him backing the deferral of the vote on the report.

The Palestinian sources said the Americans repeatedly stressed over the past few days their committed to the peace process. They also stressed, according to the sources, that in exchange for the deferral of the hearing of the report, the Israelis would be pressured to stop construction in settlements.

The sources refused to comment on whether there was a direct link between the PA's stance no the report and the American commitment to pressure Israel.

"The matter of the process's timeframe is a clear American commitment and the Americans repeatedly stressed this both in talks held with our negotiations team in the United State and in talks with President Abu Mazen (Abbas)," the source said.

Meanwhile, the delay of the session on the Goldstone Report continues to occupy the Palestinians, and a number of Palestinian organizations have decided to hold a major protest in Ramallah on Monday.


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