“Palestinians condemn Romney for suggesting they aren’t interested in peace,” from Haaretz, September 19:
The Palestinian Authority has denounced remarks by Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, who told donors that Palestinians “have no interest” in peace with Israel.
According to comments captured on newly released video of his private remarks to wealthy donors, Romney said Palestinians are “committed to the destruction and elimination of Israel” and that the prospects for a two-state solution to Mideast peace were dim. He also suggested that efforts at Mideast peace under his administration would languish.
Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat said Romney was wrong to accuse them of not seeking peace.
“No one stands to gain more from peace with Israel than Palestinians and no one stands to lose more in the absence of peace than Palestinians,” Erekat told Reuters. “Only those who want to maintain the Israeli occupation will claim the Palestinians are not interested in peace.
Nabil Abu Rdeneh, a spokesman for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, said: “We are ready for peace that is based on the 1967 borders, a two-state solution and stopping settlement activities. Thus, it is not true that we are not ready for peace, but rather, it is the Israeli side that is not ready for peace.
“We think that these statements are part of the election campaign, but unfortunately, it will not help the peace process, but rather, will strengthen the voices of extremism and the voices of those who refuse to reach a two-state solution,” Rdeneh said.
Palestinian lawmaker and scholar Hanan Ashrawi accused Romney of “destroying the chances for peace” and called his remarks “irresponsible and dangerous and both ignorant and prejudiced.”
In his private remarks to donors, Romney said the Palestinians are committed to Israel’s destruction and elimination.
“You hope for some degree of stability, but you recognize that this is going to remain an unsolved problem, and we kick the ball down the field and hope that ultimately, somehow, something will happen and resolve it,” Romney said….