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September 7, 2015 1:08 pm

Israeli Experts Ridicule Reported Abbas Threat to Cancel Oslo Accords

avatar by Ruthie Blum

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PA President Mahmoud Abbas. Photo: Facebook.

PA President Mahmoud Abbas. Photo: Facebook.

According to reports in the Arab press, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas is on the verge of announcing he is no longer bound by the Oslo Accords.

“The Palestinian leadership has decided to terminate the Interim Agreement on the West Bank and the Gaza Strip known as the Oslo Accords II, which was signed in Taba [Egypt] on September 28, 1995,” Palestinian Liberation Organization Executive Committee member Ahmad Majdalani told the independent Palestinian new agency,  Ma’an, on Sunday. “In light of the lack of commitment by Israel, the Palestinian leadership has decided that it isn’t bound by the agreement anymore and President Abbas will announce that before the U.N. General Assembly.”

Majdalani said that a draft of this decision will be put before the Palestine National Council, when it convenes September 14-15, and that it will likely be approved.

International law expert Alan Baker, the director of the Institute for Contemporary Affairs at the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs told The Algemeiner on Monday that such a threat on the part of the Palestinians is “credible inasmuch as Abbas has the tendency to use the U.N. as a convenient and popular forum for dramatic and theatrical actions as PR bluffs.”

Baker, a former Israeli ambassador to Canada — who later served as a legal adviser to Israel’s Foreign Ministry, where he took part in the negotiation and drafting of treaties with Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon and the Palestinians – explained why he does not believe the touted move will have practical or legal significance.

“Legally, Abbas can’t declare the PA to be an occupied state, because it’s not a state to begin with, for two main reasons,” Baker said. “The first is that the 2012 U.N. General Assembly upgrade resolution did not create a Palestinian state; it merely acknowledged and upgraded its observer status within the U.N. The second is that Abbas’s commitment in the Oslo accords to negotiate permanent status is indicative of his acknowledgment that the PA is not yet a state, pending final agreement. Nothing has changed in this regard.”

Nor does Baker think that if Abbas goes through with his intention to declare Oslo null and void at the General Assembly, it will have serious repercussions on Israel.

However, Baker added, “By voiding the Oslo Accords, he will be canceling his own job as rais [Arabic for president]; canceling the Palestinian Authority and its institutions; canceling security cooperation [with Israel]; canceling the joint economic framework which guarantees transfer of tax funds; canceling water cooperation; and causing serious hardships to his people.”

As for the response of the international community to the threatened action, Baker said, “They’ll probably applaud Abbas, out of their blatant double standard, and he’ll get his PR success — which he needs, given his fragile internal position; no political achievements; no unification with Hamas; and no capability of moving anything forward.”

Prof. Efraim Inbar, director of Bar-Ilan University’s Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies and an expert on Middle Eastern issues and Israeli national security, had a similar response to the idea that Abbas intends to tell the U.N. that he is no longer obligated to fulfill his obligations in the Oslo Accords.

“It’s an empty threat,” Inbar told The Algemeiner on Monday. “Abbas has no legitimacy as a leader. The Palestinians don’t care what he says. He is not known for getting things done.”

Nor would the PA president “cut himself off from the billions he receives,” Inbar added.

“The whole Palestinian national movement is dysfunctional,” he concluded. “And Abbas embodies that dysfunction.”

Oslo II, the accord in question, is the second agreement reached between Israel and the PLO. The first was signed in Washington, D.C. in 1993; the second in Taba in 1995. Together, they jump-started what has come to be called the “Oslo process,” whose ultimate aim was mutual recognition and peace between Israel and the PLO, and “self-determination” for the Palestinian people.

The Oslo Accords created the Palestinian Authority. They were also responsible for the 1994 Nobel Peace Prize being awarded jointly to PLO chief Yasser Arafat, Israeli Foreign Minister Shimon Peres and Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, “for their efforts to create peace in the Middle East.”

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  • Amnon

    Do not worry the so called Palestinians are known for the effort to cut their nose to spite the face, nothing new .

  • Hugo

    What Oslo Accords?

  • David

    Any agreement the Palestinians rescind, should never be re instituted. Enough with the losers dictating their desires to the winners. When the Pals turned down Barak and then Olmert’s offers of Peace, they got Netanyahu’s offer that is less accommodating. This should be the mantra

  • Reform School

    The ‘my-poop-doésn’t-stink ‘United Nations’ diplomats know full-well that if written agreements they create endured, they would quickly become unemployed. Parties need not even be Muslim. Were Hitler, Mussolini or Stalin Muslim? Elizabeth Taylor and her husbands? Ibn Saud and his wives?

  • Reform School

    Do Oslo 1 and/or 2 address deceptive Muslim taqiyya?

    Signatories need not be Muslim for written agreements to be worthless. Were Hitler, Stalin or Mussolini Muslim? Elizabeth Taylor or her husbands? Ibn Saud or his wives?|VUMI

  • It was Oslo which gave a terrorist entity, The PLO, legitimacy and recognition and has been a disaster for Israel in every sense.
    As usual, it was Jews who were the driving force in this landmark act of self-destruction claiming Israel would be the beneficiary. They have conveniently forgotten how many innocent Jewish lives have been lost to terrorism as a result.
    The reason Abbas wants to cancel Oslo 2 is because he will then be free to act unilaterally and declare statehood. Oslo 2 forbids any unilateral action by either party.
    Israel should respond by cancelling Oslo in its entirety….both Oslo 1 and 2.

  • The League of Nations adopting San Remo terms and the Mandate for Palestine aka Greater Israel
    The ultimate Mandate for Palestine, aka Greater Israel, approved by the Council of the League of Nations on 24 July 1922 explicitly refers back to the decisions of the Supreme Council of the Principal Allied Powers of 25 April 1920. The Mandate begins: “Whereas the Principal Allied Powers have agreed…” The League Council adopted the 1920 San Remo Treaty verbatim, the Palestine Mandate became binding on all fifty-one members of the League. Since the United States officially endorsed the terms of the Mandate but had not joined the League of Nations, special negotiations between Great Britain and the United States with regard to the Palestine Mandate, aka Greater Israel, had been successfully concluded in May 1922 and approved by the Council of the League in July. The United States ultimately signed a bilateral treaty with Britain (on 3 December 1924), actually incorporating the text of the Mandate for Palestine and approved by the US Congress and Senate, thus completing its legal alignment with the terms of the Mandate under the League of Nations.
    This act of the League Council enabled the ultimate realization of “the long cherished dream of the restoration of the Jewish people to their historical ancestral ancient land” and validated “the existence of historical facts and events linking the Jewish people to Palestine, aka Greater Israel, as the only known indigenous people for over 3,000 years. For the members of the Supreme Council, these historical facts were considered to be accepted and “established”. In the words of Neville Barbour, “In 1922, international sanction was given to the Balfour Declaration by the adoption of the San Remo Resolution issued in the Palestine Mandate”.
    In actual fact, the Mandate went beyond the Balfour Declaration of 1917.
    The incorporation, in the Preamble of the Mandate, of the principle that Greater Israel, aka Palestine, should be reconstituted as the national home of the Jewish people represented a deliberate broadening of the policies contained in the Balfour Declaration, which did not explicitly include the concept of reconstitution. It is of some interest that, while the word “reconstitute” was absent from the Balfour Declaration, it was actually Lord Balfour himself who ensured the inclusion of this concept in the final, internationally legally binding Mandate. Thus it was not a new idea, “grafted on” at the last moment, but was well deliberated. The ultimate effect was that the rights of the Jewish people under the Mandate for Palestine were thereby greater than the rights contemplated in its source document, the 1917 Balfour Declaration. According to Abraham Baumkoller:
    “The choice of the term ‘reconstitute’ clearly indicates that in the eyes of the Council, it was not a question of creating something new, but of admitting the reconstitution of a situation that already existed ages ago. This idea coincides, if you will, with the notion of ‘historic ties’, even if these are not altogether identical.”
    In addition to the insertion of the “reconstituting” language, the phrase in the Mandate’s Article 2: “…will secure the establishment” (of the Jewish national home, as laid down in the Preamble of the Mandate for Palestine) is equally said to go beyond the Balfour Declaration which uses the considerably milder language: “…view with favor the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people”, and “will use their best endeavors to facilitate the achievement of this object”.
    Looking beyond the details, the important point is that the primary objective of the Mandate for Palestine is to provide and return the national home for the Jewish people to Jewish sovereignty—including the Jewish people dispersed worldwide—in their historical ancestral Land, had been fulfilled.
    The Arab people, who already exercised jurisdictional sovereignty in a large number of States, were guaranteed protection of their civil and religious rights under the Mandate as long as they wished to remain—even after the State of Israel was ultimately formed in 1948—including citizenship if they so chose. Moreover, for the Arab population, Trans-Jordan had meanwhile been illegally added as a territory under Arab sovereignty, carved out of Jewish Palestine itself, the very mandated territory at issue, prior to the actual signing of the Mandate in 1922 under the League of Nations.
    In sum, the Mandate for Palestine, aka Greater Israel, adopted and approved by the Council of the League of Nations in July 1922, was an international treaty and, as such, was legally binding. The International Court of Justice (I.C.J.) has since confirmed that the Mandate for Palestine instrument granting all the territory west of the Jordan River “in fact and in law, is an international agreement having the character and force of a treaty or convention”.
    The Mandate for Palestine aka Greater Israel as it Pertains to Jerusalem and the Old City
    The rights granted to the Jewish people in the 1920 San Remo Conference were confirmed by the 1920 Treaty of Sevres and Lausanne, and adopted and incorporated by the Mandate for Palestine relating to the establishment of the Jewish national home were to be given effect in all parts and regions of the Palestine territory. No exception was made for Jerusalem and its Old City, which were not singled out for special reference in either the Balfour Declaration, the 1920 San Remo Treaty or the Mandate for Palestine, other than to call for the preservation of existing rights in the Holy Places. As concerns the Holy Places, including those located in the Old City, specific obligations and responsibilities were imposed on the Mandatory.
    It follows that the legal rights of the claimants to sovereignty over the Old City of Jerusalem similarly derive from the decisions of the Principal Allied Powers in the 1920 San Remo conference, and from the terms of the Mandate for Palestine adopted and approved by the Council of the League of Nations. In evaluating the validity of the claims of Israel relating to the Old City, the Council decision is of great significance from the perspective of the rights and obligations that it created under international law which the UN cannot supersede or modify without the consent of the parties.
    The League of Nations and the UN can only recommend a resolution. In order for a resolution to be binding it must be agreed to and executed by the parties. Since the Arabs rejected outright the partition and most other resolutions, all those resolutions are void and have no standing whatsoever.
    In the view of Oxford international law professor Ian Brownlie, “in many instances the rights of parties to a dispute derive from legally significant acts, or a treaty concluded very long ago”. As a result of these “legally significant acts”, there are legal as well as historical ties between the State of Israel and the Old City of Jerusalem.
    The intellectual ties were further solidified by the official opening of the Hebrew University on 1 April 1925 in Jerusalem. This significant event was attended by many dignitaries, including the University’s founding father, Dr. Chaim Weizmann, Field Marshall Allenby, Lord Balfour, Professor William Rappard and Sir Herbert Samuel, among many other distinguished guests. According to Dr. Weizmann, addressing the dignitaries and some twelve thousand other attendees at this memorable event, the opening of the University in Jerusalem was “the distinctive symbol, as it is destined to be the crowning glory, of the National Home of the Jewish people which we are seeking to rebuild”.
    Furthermore and of great importance, it must be noted the Faisal Weitzmann agreement of January 3, 1919 stated and agreed that the Jews would have Jerusalem and that the Muslim places of worship would be protected.
    In addition to the legal, historical and intellectual heritage, in the words of Canadian scholar Dr. Jacques Paul Gauthier: “To attempt to solve the Jerusalem/ Old City problem without taking into consideration the historical and religious facts is like trying to put together a ten thousand piece puzzle without the most strategic pieces of that puzzle”. In his monumental work entitled Sovereignty Over the Old City of Jerusalem: A Study of the Historical, Religious, Political and Legal Aspects of the Question of the Old City, Dr. Gauthier offers an exhaustive review of these historical/spiritual/political/legal bonds, emphasizing the “extraordinary meaning” of the Old City of Jerusalem and the temple to the Jewish people.
    Indeed, with respect to the question of the Old City, the historical facts and the res religiosae (or things involving religion) are rendered legally relevant by the decisions taken at the 1920 San Remo sessions of the Paris Peace Conference, together with the terms of the Mandate for Greater Israel, aka Palestine. Notwithstanding the fact that historical, religious or other non-legal considerations may not be considered relevant or sufficient to support a legal claim normally in international law cases, these aspects of the issue of the city of Jerusalem are relevant in evaluating the claims of Israel and the Arab-Palestinians relating to sovereignty over the Old City, just as much or perhaps even more than over the entire State of Israel and the Holy Land, as noted in the Introduction.

  • The Oslo accord is null and void! r6
    A scathing indictment of the world nations at large

    The Arab-Palestinians Charters explicitly states that they want the State of Israel for themselves and the Jewish people destroyed.

    The Arab-Palestinians actions to date has proven that they do not want peace. Why is the liberal left and many of the world nations are fantasizing and deluding themselves that the Arabs want peace.

    People of the world wake up and realize what is their ultimate mission, eliminate the unbelievers.
    If the world at large does not wake up now they will be next. It already has started, take off the blinders, open you eyes and look around.

    No entity in the world will force a solution on Israel.
    They forced and or were complicit to the Final solution in WWII with the Holocaust and the extermination of over 6 million Jewish people, men women and children.

    Where were the worlds nations outcry, threats and objection when over 6 million Jewish people were being exterminated by the Nazis, men women and children? They were silent.

    Where was the world nations when the Arab countries expelled over a million adult Jewish people and their children from their countries who lived there for over 2,400 years, many died due to persecution, hardship and starvation. The Arabs confiscated their assets, businesses, homes and Real Estate property 5-6 times the size of Israel (120,440 sq. km. or 75,00 sq. miles), valued in the trillions of dollars?

    Where is the world nations today? Why do they ignore when thousands are slaughtered by Muslims throughout the world every month.
    Today and since 1948. Israel is being threatened with annihilation, the Arabs educate their children to commit terror and violence against Israel, glorify suicide bombers and terrorists, they name streets after them and pay monthly payments to their families. When Israel defends itself from destruction, suicide bombers, thousands of missiles, violence, etc, by the Arabs, every country has something to say, threaten Israel and meddle in its business.

    This is the time when nations of the world must mind their own business and stay out of Israel’s internal affairs. Only then there will be a possibility of peace.

    YJ Draiman

  • Joseph Feld

    What does it say about the Nobel Peace Prize that it was awarded to Arafat? What does it say that the Prize was given to Obama in the hope he might some day do something to deserve it? With ISIL destroying the Middle East, whomever defeats and stops ISIL would deserve the Nobel Peace Prize, and the gratitude of four million Syrian refugees.

  • Aboriginal and Indigenous Rights of the Jewish People to their Historical Land of Israel

    “The Jewish people have forged a successful state in their historic ancestral homeland,” said U.S. President Barack Obama in his speech to the U.N. General Assembly on September 21, 2011. This theme of “people” and “historic homeland” has for centuries resonated with most Jews round the world. However, the president’s words were even more welcome, because our own time witnesses an increasingly bitter controversy over the Jewish people’s right to political self-determination in a part of its aboriginal ancestral homeland as the only remaining indigenous people of Palestine, aka Greater Israel.
    That fierce debate inevitably revolves around the political and legal doctrine of the self-determination of peoples. There is also the companion doctrine of aboriginal indigenous rights, because the Jewish people is a small indigenous minority in the Arab Middle East; which in turn is an important part of the greater Muslim world that also includes key countries like Turkey, Iran, Pakistan, and Indonesia.
    Aboriginal indigenous rights suggest that there is significant moral and legal weight to the historical facts of the Jews. Though Jews have been periodically persecuted and have been perennial victims of discrimination for more than twenty-five centuries since the destruction of the Jewish Temples in Jerusalem by the Romans, there has always been a Jewish population in Greater Israel. Furthermore, most Jews throughout the world kept some demographic and cultural ties to their aboriginal indigenous homeland, including the aspiration to return and rebuild recited in their daily prayers and holidays. Moreover, there is added moral and legal weight supporting the Jews aboriginal indigenous rights as a result of said rights having already been explicitly recognized in relevant international treaties, which are the highest source of international law.
    The concept of aboriginal indigenous rights has been well understood by other peoples: e.g., by the Greeks in the early 19th century when they fought for independence from the Ottoman Empire. More recently speaking articulately about their aboriginal and treaty rights, the Indian tribes of Canada astutely perceive that law is akin to an ongoing discussion about rights, in which it is essential to offer meaningful arguments. Such “meaningful arguments” must include discussion where the indigenous people get to tell their own story, which can also become a compelling narrative that engages the conscience of others who are more powerful.
    How are Arab-Palestinians “a people”, but Jews are not?
    Denying or minimizing Jewish rights is an integral part of the ongoing war against the Jewish people and Israel. For example, Arab-Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas and Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad deny that the Jews are a people, within the context of the modern political and legal doctrines of aboriginal indigenous rights and the self-determination of peoples. However, there is an enormous body of archaeological and other historical evidence demonstrating that the Jewish people, like the Greek people or the Han Chinese people, is among the oldest of the world’s peoples. The early modern European peoples probably derived their understanding of what it means to be a people in history principally from the example of the Jewish people as set out in the Bible.

    What is a people?
    Linguists theorize about a proto-Semitic language which perhaps suggests kinship among the ancient Semitic populations, long before the birth of Hebrew and then Arabic. But “people-hood” is about much more than genetics. It is also a complex sociological phenomenon — an abstraction, yet nonetheless one of the principal motors of world history. Opting to self-identify consistently as a specific people, a human population takes a name and shares a variable range of relatively distinct civilizational features — e.g., ancestors, history, homeland, territory, language, literature, religion, culture, economy, and institutions. Moreover, in addition to its subjective identity, a people also normally attracts objective identity in the eyes of its friends and enemies, who frequently provide valuable historical evidence about its existence and characteristics.
    Such reference to historical evidence is critical, because the political and legal doctrines of aboriginal indigenous rights and the self-determination of peoples cannot apply retroactively. This means that a people, without a continuous identity stretching back to the relevant historical time, cannot today make an aboriginal indigenous or other claim with respect to that earlier period before its ethno-genesis — i.e., when it did not yet self-identify as that particular people. And to be sure, new peoples are always emerging while older peoples may disappear; though genes and cultural characteristics may to some extent persist in populations of one or more other peoples.

    Names and extent of the aboriginal indigenous home
    Generally and locally, most Muslims and Arabs stubbornly reject the legitimacy and permanence of Israel as “the” Jewish State; i.e., as the political expression of the self-determination of the Jewish people in a part of its larger aboriginal indigenous territory. Said historical ancestral homeland stretched from the Mediterranean Sea to lands east of the Jordan River. For example, the Bible tells us that the Twelve Tribes straddled the Jordan River, as did the realm of Kings David and Solomon and their successors. Since antiquity, this homeland was known to Jews as “the land of Israel”

    Part One

  • President is a Zionist Approved Kapo, that’s all!
    Hang On Palestinians, real help is on it way with Messianic Jews destroying the Zionism.

  • enufizenuf

    Someone name ONE article of Palestinian responsibilities in the Oslo Accords that they ever lived up to.

    • Hugo

      Israelí stuck to all of the accords while conquering Palestinian land .

  • Martin

    Oh happy day. If the Oslo West Bank blunder, Israel’s second blunder [ the first was failure to annex in 1967 ] is up for grabs, annex now and do not commit another blunder. Israel will not get another chance like this. The international complainers will complain, and that’s all. The refugees will find refuge someplace. Prhaps they, too ,will want to become Germans.

  • art

    Big deal Has abbas/plo/pa/fatah evr fulfilled any of its obligations? Things like normalizing relations, working for peace, stopping terrorism, incitement etc. If abbas cancels the security agreements Israel has no obligation to protect him from his friends, Nor would Israel have to pay any “taxes” to the pa. Best there would be no reason for Israel to freeze any building Israel should them=n annex Judea and Samaria, Jerusalem etc

  • Would Abbas renouncing Oslo at the United Nations give Israel the ‘green light’ to annex Judea and Samaria?

  • Michael OConnor

    I must confess Abbas is a standing JOKE anyway let him get on with his 2 pence life that he lives, one thing for sure he will never have a Palestinian state that will be recognized.