Issues Regarding Security
Why is it that while Israel would be required to start withdrawals immediately [Article 5, Paragraph 7(b)], there is no time element associated with disbanding PLO terrorist infrastructure-“irregular forces or armed bands” [Article 5, Paragraph 1(b)iv]?
The Initiative will prohibit certain weapons in the PLO state. Why is there no provision for clearing out such weapons-smuggled in defiance of Oslo Accord stipulations-that currently exist in large numbers in areas under control of the PA?
Under the Initiative, the IDF will be barred from patrolling the airspace of parts of Jerusalem that will be under Israeli control [Article 4, Paragraph 1(a)].
How will Israel be able to adequately defend her capital under these conditions?
While the Initiative would detail the weapons the “non-militarized” PLO state’s Security Force could posses [to be spelled out in Appendix X, not yet written], this list can be changed at any time without Israel’s consent. [Any proposed changes to Annex X shall be considered by a trilateral committee composed of the two Parties and the Multinational Force. If no agreement is reached in the trilateral committee, the Implementation and Verification Group composed of the US, Russian Federation, EU, UN and others may make its own recommendations. — Article 5, Paragraph 3(b).]
How can Israel be asked to relinquish control in this fashion?
The PLO state can enter into defense pacts with even the most radical state as long as the stated objective of the pact does not explicitly include “launching aggression or other acts of hostility ” against Israel [Article 4, Paragraph 1(b)iii.]
How can Israel, which still faces hostility and belligerence on the part of several Middle East states, be asked to agree to such an arrangement?
Security Provisions are only short-lived:
Monitoring of international entry points into the PLO state can be terminated by the Implementation and Verification Group composed of the US, Russian Federation, EU, UN and others after 5 years. [Article 5, Paragraph 11 (d)].
Israel is limited to a “small military presence” in the Jordan Valley under the authority of the Multinational Force and that presence is only guaranteed for 5.5 years [Article 5, Paragraph 7(f]].
The two Early Warning Stations provided for Israel under the Initiative are guaranteed for only a period of ten years. [Article 5, Paragraph 8(f)].
In light of ten years of PA non-compliance with the Oslo Accords, how can Israel be asked to trust that security provisions would be required only for a few years?
Discrepancies Regarding the Refugee Issue
The Initiative recognizes “the right of states that have hosted Palestinian refugees to remuneration”[Article 7, Paragraph 3(b)], but there is no reference to the possibility of offsetting the value of Palestinian Arab property “at the time of displacement” against the value of lost Jewish property in Arab countries. And since “No further claims related to events prior to this Agreement may be raised by either Party.” [Article 1, Paragraph 2], the right to raise this issue of lost Jewish property will be forfeited.
Why should Israel be asked to agree to this inequity?
Israel is to pay a “lump sum” covering the aggregate value f “Palestinians’ property at the time of displacement”. This property is not identified as “Palestinian refugee property”, opening the possibility that land that Israeli Arabs may also claim would be included in the calculation. [Article 7, Paragraph 9].
Why has this not been clarified?
Religious Rights Forfeited
The Waqf may bar Jewish visitors to the Temple Mount on the grounds that it disrupts religious worship or decorum on the site [Article 6, Paragraph 5(b)iii].
The Oslo Interim Agreement refers to respecting “the ways of worship” and “religious rights of Jews… ” at religious sites [Annex III, Appendix 1, Article 32] but the “Initiative” only refers to “access” [Article 10]. It is the position of the PA appointed Mufti of Jerusalem as well as the other PA religious officials that, while Jews may have “access” to such holy sites as the Tomb of the Patriarchs in Hebron and Rachel’s Tomb in Bethlehem, it is blasphemy for Jews and other infidels to pray at these sites as they are also considered mosques.