April 15, 2010 - 12:00am

A senior Palestinian official on Thursday said the recent Israeli decision to evict people from the West Bank aimed to exert Israeli military rule on the Palestinian- controlled territory again.

"The real context of the decision is the return of the Israeli military rule, which has ended according to Oslo peace accords between Israel and Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) in 1993, " said Tayeb Abdul Rahim, secretary general of the Palestinian National Authority (PNA).

"The decision is as dangerous as settlement building, and both measures aim at driving out the Palestinians from their homeland," he added.

On Tuesday, the Israeli military order entered into effect, which required the army to evict Palestinians living in the West Bank without official ID cards issued by Israel, as well as Palestinians who are originally born outside the West Bank, including their children even if the latter are born inside the region.

The order also allowed the army to deal with those who stayed in the West Bank without an Israeli permission as infiltrators who would be jailed in prison for seven years.

The recent order came as peace talks between Israel and the PNA have been stalled for 16 months and international efforts to revive the negotiations have failed, owing to the continuation of Israeli settlement activities in the West Bank and East Jerusalem which the Palestinians see as capital of their future statehood. The PNA had accepted the U.S. offer to engage in proximity talks with Israel to revive stalled peace process on March 7, however, the Israeli announcement last week to expand a settlement in East Jerusalem angered the PNA and bogged down the negotiation talks again.


American Task Force on Palestine - 1634 Eye St. NW, Suite 725, Washington DC 20006 - Telephone: 202-262-0017