During a TV Interview with Israel’s Channel 1, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas stated that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told him that he cannot extend the freeze on settlement activities in the occupied territories. Abbas said that Netanyahu explained his stance by stating that he fears his government coalition would collapse.

Commenting on the statements of Netanyahu, Abbas said, ‘The government is not more important than peace and the future of the two peoples”.

Responding to a question regarding the option of dissolving the Palestinian Authority should peace talks fail, Abbas said that this is not an option, and was never discussed.

He also stated that Israel is occupying the territories but is avoiding its responsibilities.

Furthermore, the Palestinian president reiterated the Palestinian position of not resuming peace talks with Israel while it continues its settlement activities in the occupied territories.

Abbas added, ‘When Obama became president, he said that settlement activities must be halted, and now Europe and the whole world are saying that too, so my stance is the same”.

As for the Israeli demand that the Palestinians must recognize Israel as a Jewish State, Abbas stated that the Palestinians already recognize Israel, and added that Israel cannot demand that the Palestinians, the Arabs and the rest of the world recognize it as a Jewish State.