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Arab-Israeli committee calls for opposition to land transfer

Jan. 7, 2014 4:56 P.M. (Updated: Jan. 10, 2014 4:54 P.M.)
NAZARETH (Ma'an) -- A top committee representing the Palestinian community in Israel has called for opposition to a potential land and population transfer proposed by Israeli officials which could strip tens of thousands of their citizenship.

The Monitoring Committee of Arabs in Israel called on its members to rejection any peace resolution based on ethnic or racial transfer, and announced plans to prepare for protests against the idea.

A member of the committee told Ma'an that their next meeting will discuss forming a delegation to meet with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to make clear their rejection of any potential transfer plan.

The member added that the issue was discussed previously with Abbas, who promised not to support it in any way in the ongoing Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations.

The call comes two days after Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said that he would refuse any peace agreement with Palestinians that did not entail the transfer of Palestinian-Israeli citizens into the future Palestinian state.

This could potentially entail redrawing Israel's borders to exclude hundreds of thousands of Israeli citizens who are not Jewish, while annexing Jewish-only settlements built in the occupied West Bank on confiscated Palestinian land.

Although the majority of Palestinians were expelled or fled from their homes inside Israel during the 1948 conflict that led to the creation of the State of Israel, some Palestinians managed to remain in their villages and their descendants today make up around 20 percent of Israel's population.
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