Israel National News (Link) (September 6, 2009)
Arab League head Amr Moussa issued a warning Sunday to Arab countries to avoid normalizing ties with Israel until Israel gives in to the League's demands, which include a complete building freeze in Jewish communities in Judea, Samaria, and much of Jerusalem. Any country that warms its ties with Israel before Arab demands are met will face a “tough” response, Moussa said, speaking at a news conference in Egypt.
"If we discover that someone normalized ties with Israel, I believe the reaction across the Arab world would be very violent,” he clarified.
Moussa made it clear last Friday that the Arab League's demand for a building freeze includes all Jerusalem neighborhoods east of the 1949 armistice line. Among such neighborhoods are Pisgat Zeev, Ramat Eshkol, Neve Yaakov, Har Homa, French Hill and the Old City.
The League demands that Jews be forbidden to build in those areas, while Arab construction would be permitted throughout the city.
During Sunday's media briefing, Moussa accused Israel's government of being “stubborn.” Arab countries cannot be expected to recognize Israel without getting their demands met in return, he insisted.
Moussa issued his warning during a joint news conference with Khaled Mashaal, the Syrian-based leader of Hamas. Mashaal described Israel's proposal to temporarily freeze Jewish building as “dangerous,” and joined Moussa in telling Arabs not to “rush toward normalization.”
Mashaal also discussed the situation regarding talks for kidnapped IDF soldier Gilad Shalit. Negotiations have renewed with German mediation, he said, but there is “a long way to go, which requires patience.”