Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas warned on Tuesday that his administration would "no longer deal" with Israel if a United Nations Security Council resolution calling for a final peace deal fails.
“If the Arab-Palestinian initiative submitted to the Security Council to put an end to (Israeli) occupation doesn’t pass, we will be forced to take the necessary political and legal decisions,” Abbas was quoted as saying by the Algerian APS news agency.
“If it fails, we will no longer deal with the Israeli government, which will then be forced to assume its responsibilities as an occupier,” he added.
The Palestinian draft resolution sets a 12-month deadline for wrapping up negotiations on a final peace settlement and the end of 2017 as the timeframe for completing an Israeli withdrawal from Palestinian territories.
A final peace deal would pave the way to the creation of a Palestinian state with Jerusalem as a shared capital, according to the text.
Speculation has been mounting since the death in December of a Palestinian official who was struck by an Israeli soldier that the Palestinian Authority could suspend security coordination with Israel in the West Bank if the resolution fails to pass.
“We are determined to regain the rights of our people, including the right of return (for refugees) and the freedom of all Palestinian prisoners held in Israeli jails,” Abbas said.
The Palestinian president met his Algerian counterpart Abdelaziz Bouteflika on Monday during a three-day official visit.