Israeli member of Knesset, Vice Prime Minister and Minister for Regional Development and the development of the Negev and Galilee, Silvan Shalom, threatened that Israel would reoccupy the West Bank in response to the Palestinian bid at the United Nations General Assembly that won the Palestinians a nonmember observer state status.During an interview with the Israeli Radio, Shalom, of the Likud Party of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, accused the Palestinian Authority (P.A.) in the occupied West Bank, of violating the Oslo Agreement, and said that heading to the UN effectively “voided the peace deal, an issue that allows Israel to conduct unilateral moves”.
The Palestine News Network (PNN) has reported that Shalom threatened that Israel would enforce its military control on the entire West Bank, and would link the Ma’ale Adumim (the biggest settlement bloc in the West Bank) with occupied East Jerusalem by confiscating large areas of Palestinian lands.
Shalom claimed that the Palestinians did not agree to return to the negotiation table despite “the fact that Netanyahu agreed to the two-state solution and froze the construction and expansion of settlements”.
On her part, Tzipi Livni, former Israeli Foreign Minister and the leader of the newly formed party “The Movement”, stated that the Palestinian Authority could have been prevented from heading to the United Nations General Assembly, should the government of Benjamin Netanyahu have changed its policies and negotiated with the Palestinians.
Israel and the United States were angered by the Palestinian move, and the Palestinian victory at the United Nations General Assembly, after 138 voted Yes for Palestine, while only nine countries said No, and 41 countries abstained.
The Palestinian Authority of Mahmoud Abbas in the West Bank said that it is not opposed to direct peace talks with Israel, but cannot resume the talks as along as Tel Aviv continues its violations, invasions, home demolitions, and its illegal settlement construction and expansion activities on Palestinian lands in the occupied West Bank, including in and around occupied East Jerusalem.
Israel never relinquished control of the West Bank, as the Palestinian Authority only “controls” main West Bank cities and some surrounding villages, but has not geographic contiguity, no control over borders or natural resources, and has no control on main areas of Palestinian lands in the West Bank.
The Israeli army also carries out repeated invasions and attacks, that also include the kidnapping of Palestinians, in areas that are under the “control of the P.A.”.