Israel Says No Dice to Palestinian Government
Israeli officials say they will not work with a newly formed Palestinian coalition, calling the power-sharing regime “a leap backward.” Despite a tentative pledge from Hamas to “respect” past agreements, Israel feels the new government does not meet the requirements set out by the so-called quartet of Western nations.
Los Angeles Times:
Israeli officials said the draft platform for the new government, under which the Islamic militant group Hamas will share power with its main rival, Fatah, appeared to maintain the hard-line stance of the current government, which has been run solely by Hamas.
“Unfortunately, the new government refuses to accept the three international benchmarks. It refuses to accept Israel’s right to exist, it refuses to renounce terrorism and violence, and it refuses to accept the signed agreements in the Middle East peace process,” said Mark Regev, a spokesman for Israel’s Foreign Ministry.
“Accordingly, Israel will not deal with this new government.”
Regev said the West should maintain its aid boycott unless the Palestinian government meets those conditions. The West laid out the criteria last year after Hamas defeated Fatah in parliamentary elections.