Thursday, September 22, 2011

Arafat Aide: UN Bid is Another Mistake

Rachid accused Abbas and others for nurturing false hope for the right of return
"knowing it was incompatible with any potential peace agreement."

Mohammed Rachid, former aide to Yassir Arafat told Daniel Ephron, in an interview for the Daily Beast, that the UN statehood bid is a mistake and "...will not deliver anything practical for the Palestinian people."

'“I see it risking a lot: Risking the lives of the Palestinians, risking the Palestinian economy, risking even the legal structure of the Palestinian Authority.” 
'“We are repeating the problems that occurred in the year 2000…when we lost the very good relations we had with the Americans, when we lost European support,” Rachid said. “We had 300,000 workers in Israel. But because we flexed our muscles to show we can do an intifada (uprising), 300,000 [Palestinians] lost their income.”
'"Referring to years of peace talks with Israelis, Rachid said Palestinian leaders had deceived their people by publicly insisting on the right of millions of Palestinians classified as refugees around the region to return to present-day Israel -- while acknowledging at the negotiating table that a broad repatriation was unrealistic.
'“We think we are cheating our people. We are cheating ourselves…. I was there on that team, in that room, in those meetings, so many times. I’m sorry, I have to tell the Palestinian people: We never demanded that you refugees will come to your homes or to your historical country [en masse], never. Anyone who tells you that…will be lying to you,” Rachid said.
'“They [Palestinian leaders] are not prepared to hold themselves historically responsible for crossing some red lines on the Palestinian side, which at the top of the list is the right of return.”'
Read the whole article here.

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