Middle East

Palestinian leaks: Views from Gaza

TV network al-Jazeera has released documents purporting to show offers of major concessions to Israel by the main Palestinian negotiators.

The documents suggest the Palestinians agreed to concede large parts of occupied East Jerusalem and to limit the number of refugees allowed to return to their homes in what is now Israel.

Here Palestinians in Gaza reflect on the release of the documents and their possible impact.

Yousef Al-Helou, Gaza City

Image caption Yousef says the leaks will send shockwaves through the Muslim world

The question is not only how al-Jazeera obtained these documents, but why they were released now, as it is clear these documents genuine.

If it is true that such big concessions were made by the PA, then what would this lead to - a revolution or a popular uprising? How could the PA save its reputation and regain the trust of Palestinians, especially refugees?

Personally I do not rule out the possibly that it is Israel that has sparked this scandal - which many have slammed as a national crime - in order to punish [Palestinian leader Mahmoud] Abbas for his stance. Maybe for his refusal to make another final concession!

Concessions on the part of the PA are not something new. But Israel has always been trying to blackmail and weaken the Palestinian leadership and create divisions among Palestinians.

The concessions implied in the leaks will send shockwaves through the Palestinian people inside the occupied territories and in the diaspora, and also through the wider Arab and Muslim worlds, because the holy city of Jerusalem - al-Quds - houses the al-Aqsa mosque and the Dome of the Rock mosque, which belong to all Muslims.

The revelation of the secret documents might lead to the collapse of the PA in the West Bank. It would surely give a bad name to the Palestinian leadership as some call it the "big scandal".

But then what would Israel do if Hamas took over the West Bank? I really wonder what kind of peace and peace partner Israel wants.

Life is too short. I wonder if my children, after another 20 years of peace talks, will live in peace. God Knows.

Abdal Rahman Shaath, Gaza City

Do I believe in the veracity of these documents? Why not, these dirty games have always been played behind closed doors when it comes to negotiations. Palestinians have always been the weak side.

The people around me are not asking whether these documents are real. They are asking why they were published at this time, and who leaked such documents. Who is gaining from all this?

Was it an Israeli leak designed to achieve the withdrawal of the Palestinians in the last round of negotiations? Or could it have been an act of revenge by a senior Palestinian intelligence personnel?

These leaks will only pull Gaza and the West Bank further apart. They seem to prove that the Palestinian Authority is giving away what we have a right to. Some red lines have been crossed - even religious issues.

As for the negotiations with the Israelis, the documents give them even less credibility. One positive consequence would be that if negotiations do go ahead in the future, no deal could credibly be signed before a referendum of the Palestinian people.

I would not agree to Israel keeping large parts of occupied East Jerusalem. The Palestinian side should work on the 1967 borders with a state of Palestine with East Jerusalem as its capital.

The news regarding the number of refugees allowed to return does not surprise me. It has always been known that there were huge sacrifices given in order to give some movement. That whole issue should be looked at differently - we should have the recognition of the right to return and then look into who is actually willing to return in reality.

Motasem A Dalloul, Gaza

Image caption Motasem says Palestinians don't trust the negotiators

Most of these documents are new for Palestinians, but the content is not new.

The group which takes the role of speaking on behalf of the Palestinians isn't trustworthy.

We may not have had the details, as we hadn't seen the documents al-Jazeera discovered, but we do have a general idea about their views on the conflict.

When they say that we don't want to resume negotiations because the Israelis don't want to freeze settlement, we know that they are lying and we know that they keep meeting the Israelis secretly to pave the way for a big, sudden meeting that ends with an agreement about a bundle of concessions.

This has happened in Oslo, Taba, Sharm el-Sheikh and recently in Annapolis.

They will hide some of the truth about the agreement and then reveal it, step by step.

Palestinians still have a very patriotic point of view about the late PLO President, Yasser Arafat... and they used to trust Mr Arafat. Today, Palestinians don't trust any of Arafat's successors or any of the other political figures related to Fatah.

When they do make any agreements with the Israelis and tell the media about it, the Israelis then tell the truth, which always embarrasses them.

Omar Mussa Soleiman, Rafah, Gaza

Image caption Omar says he is not surprised by the revelations

We are not surprised or in shock - we know what type of people the negotiators are and we know what happens behind closed doors during the talks.

I don't know about the veracity of the documents - I think al-Jazeera is trying to dramatise things.

[But] if the documents are true, then the negotiators are wrong. They cannot just leave the capital of Jerusalem and forget about the right of return for the refugees spread all over the Arab world.

Any agreement should be consulted with the people, they should hold a referendum. We will not let them sign any negotiation without them asking if it's OK to withdraw these rights.

But we have no Palestinian parliament, the negotiators don't represent us and even the government - Fatah and Hamas - don't really represent us.

Yes, here in Gaza Hamas takes care of us and our security, but we need to elect representatives and vote.

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites