Palestinian negotiators say they canceled meet with Israelis after deadly clashes 27Aug13 August 27, 2013

Haaretz    -    26 August 2013

3854726312The Palestinian envoys to the peace talks canceled a meeting with their Israeli counterparts on Monday, according to a senior Palestinian official. The development comes in the wake of the deaths of three Palestinians from Israeli gunfire during clashes at the Qalandiyah refugee camp earlier in the day.

A senior Palestinian official told Haaretz that the Palestinians decided against attending the meeting to protest the violence in Qalandiyah. The Palestinians will mull how to proceed with regard to the future of the talks, he said. 

No confirmation of the report could be obtained from Israeli officials.

Palestinian Foreign Ministry Riyad al-Malki commented on the matter during a press conference on Monday but did not state whether the meeting will be held as scheduled.

“We have made it clear on several occasions that the negotiations will be affected by policy and measures that undermine the process,” he said. “There is no doubt that what happened this morning will have an effect.”

Three Palestinians were shot and killed Monday morning during clashes with Israeli Border Police in a refugee camp near Jerusalem. Fifteen Palestinians were wounded and six of them are in serious condition, Palestinian sources say.

According to reports, a large force of the Border Police entered Qalandiyah early in the morning to arrest a terror susepct. The officers arrived in commercial, non-military vehicles.

According to the policemen, once the arrest was made and they began making their exit, they were attacked by some 1,500 Palestinians who threw stones and bricks. IDF Artillery Corps troops stationed in the area were called in to extract the Border Police force. A clash involving live fire ensued.

The men killed were identified as Rubin al-Abed, 28, and Yunis Jahjuh, 19, and Jihad Aslan, 19.

“During a nighttime incursion of security forces to arrest a suspect in Qalandiyah, southeast of Ramallah, they were met with violent and disorderly conduct by hundreds of Palestinians who attacked them,” an IDF statement said.

According to initial reports by the IDF, the military unit providing back up to the Border Police forces “worked to evacuate the officers, and when they felt immediate danger to their lives, they opened fire at the attackers,” the statement said.

A spokesman for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas warned of the incident’s implications.

“The continued criminal acts by the Israelis, alongside the continued settlement construction, expose the true intentions of Israel’s government, and the actions it takes to foil the peace talks,” said Nabil Abu Rudeineh. “I call on the U.S. administration to thwart the collapse of the negotiations.”

The meeting scheduled for Monday evening was meant to be the fourth since the process was renewed. After the last meeting, which was held last Tuesday, Abbas said that an agreement was possible if Israel kept an honest position.

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