Top Member of U.S. Negotiating Team: Most West Bank Housing Tenders Announced During Peace Talks Were on Land Abbas Agreed Would Remain Israeli


abbasDavid Makovsky, a member of U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry’s negotiating team, told a conference at Bar-Ilan University’s Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies on Tuesday that during nine months of Israeli-Palestinian negotiations in 2014, 62% of Israel’s publicly announced tenders for housing beyond the Green Line were earmarked for the 1.9% of West Bank land that PA President Mahmoud Abbas had once consented would remain in Israel’s hands.

Makovsky, a fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, said that Israel was more “geographically cautious” with settlement announcements during the negotiating period than many realize, but this fact was not made public for political reasons.

In 2008 Abbas reportedly offered a 1.9% land swap, apparently involving the area where most of the housing tenders were announced during the negotiations.

{ Israel News Bureau}