Israeli Premier Benjamin Netanyahu has attacked the acting Palestinian Authority chief for his refusal to resume peace talks over demands for settlement freeze in the occupied Palestinian territories.
"The Palestinians are piling demand upon demand upon demand," said Netanyahu on Wednesday adding that "The Palestinians have climbed up a tree …and they like it up there".
He scorned Mahmoud Abbas for his refusal to end a year-old suspension of peace talks as US President Barack Obama’s envoy George Mitchell prepared for new talks in the region, Reuters reported.
"People bring ladders to them. We bring ladders to them. The higher the ladder, the higher they climb," Netanyahu said.
The negations have been halted due to Israel’s refusal to freeze settlement construction in the occupied territories.
The Palestinians have repeatedly called for a clear framework for the talks and a timetable for the establishment of an independent Palestinian state in the West Bank and East Jerusalem al-Quds, which was occupied by Israel in 1967.
Abbas says he won’t return to the negotiation table without a complete Israeli settlement freeze which Israel has so far refused to do.
Citing a Palestinian official, Haaretz reported on Wednesday that Abbas had proposed that the Obama administration negotiate the final borders of a Palestinian state with Tel Aviv.
The state would have to be established in the territories Israel occupied in the 1967 Mideast War, namely the West Bank, Gaza and east Jerusalem al-Quds, according to the official.
He, however, said "the Palestinians would agree to swap up to 3 percent of the territory to accommodate some Israeli settlements".