Sunday, January 17, 2010

Reuters misleads (again) on the cause of suspended peace talks

In a previous post, we noted Reuters erroneous assertion that peace talks between the Palestinian Authority and Israel under former PM Ehud Olmert had broken down as a result of the Gaza War last January.  We linked to two previous Reuters articles and a Wall Street Journal story demonstrating that in fact, the PA led by its President, Mahmoud Abbas, had effectively terminated negotiations with Israel as early as the Fall of 2008 following Abbas' refusal to accept Olmert's offer of a Palestinian state on 97 percent of the West Bank (also, Judea and Samaria) and the PA's inability to persuade the Quartet to specify that a Palestinian state be established on all territory beyond the 1949 armistice lines with the eastern part of Jerusalem as its capital.

In a story appearing on its website today, Reuters' Allyn Fisher-Ilan repeats the canard:
Abbas suspended talks with Netanyahu's predecessor over the Gaza war. 
As demonstrated above, this is a false reading of the historical record; the Gaza War was not the precipitating factor leading to a collapse in talks between the parties.  Negotiations had failed well before the war and it is likely that Abbas even supported and cooperated with Israeli efforts to end Hamas rule in Gaza.

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