The Palestinian Authority will not recognize the State of Israel and will not give up the territory it captured during the 1967 Six-Day War, the Palestinian president said on Sunday.
President Mahmoud Abbas said in a statement that “Israel will not negotiate for the return of the occupied territories, including East Jerusalem, nor will it relinquish the sovereignty over these lands,” the official Palestinian news agency Wafa reported.
The statement came a day after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the West Bank and Gaza Strip would be annexed by a future Palestinian state.
Netanyahu said during a visit to Jordan that he had spoken to Abbas and other Palestinians to discuss the “very serious situation” in the Middle East.
“He has called on the Israeli government to make a decision about the status of the Palestinian territories, which includes East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip,” Netanyahu said.
“The West Bank is not an integral part of Israel, it is not under its jurisdiction and is not subject to its sovereignty.”
In response, Netanyahu said: “We do not want to negotiate for anything.
We do not need the Israeli authorities to give us an inch of territory in return for nothing.”
Abbas said he was concerned that Israel would continue to use force in the region and he called on Israeli leaders to “stop the occupation and not to negotiate with terror.”
Israel occupied the West of the Gaza and West of Israel during the Six-day War in 1967 and annexed the territory in the 1967 war.
The West Bank, including east Jerusalem, was captured in the 1974 Yom Kippur War.
Israel’s Foreign Ministry said on Friday that it would consider all the possible legal, diplomatic and security options to respond to the announcement, including international legal actions against Israel.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, center, talks with Israeli Prime Minster Benjamin Netanyahu during a meeting at the White House in Washington, DC, U.S., July 24, 2020.
Abbas said Israel will “not negotiate for” the return or relinquish of the territories captured during Operation Protective Edge, during which Israel launched air strikes on Gaza and the West bank.
The Palestinians have long complained about Israeli settlement expansion in the West.
In January, Abbas called on Israel to withdraw its settlements, saying the move “is not in the interest of the international community.”
Israel has said it has made clear that its settlement expansion is only for security reasons and does not include the possibility of expanding settlement blocs in the occupied West Bank.
Israel and the United States have also agreed not to recognize a Palestinian state in the future.