The Guardian

Gershon Baskin and the Palestinian Negotiation Support Unit (NSU) Documents

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Gershon Baskin is 100 percent sure that a former disgruntled employed member of the Negotiations Support Unit headed by Palestinian chief negotiator Saeb Erekat leaked the documents. In the NSU document leaked about Gershon Baskin he advocates imposing the two-state solution in the United Nations, as once Palestine gets full membership at the United Nations,the situation on the ground would be of one member-state (Israel) occupying another member-state (Palestine).

The Palestine Papers is a collection of confidential documents about the Israeli–Palestinian peace process leaked by Al Jazeera between 23 and 26 January 2011. Nearly 1,700 of documents from the office of the main PLO negotiator, Sa’eb Erekat, and his team have been published, dating from 1999 to 2010.

Al Jazeera and The Guardian say they have authenticated the documents, and a media adviser to Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert also affirmed their authenticity. Leaders of the Palestinian Authority have complained about the way the documents were presented by al-Jazeera.

Most of the documents are from the Palestinian negotiation support unit (NSU). The NSU was the PLO’s main technical and legal advice organ for the Palestinian side in the peace negotiations, set up in 1999 and headed by Saeb Erekat.

Gershon Baskin, codirector of Israel Palestinian Center for Research, said “I’m 100 percent sure that it’s a former disgruntled employed” member of the Negotiations Support Unit headed by Palestinian chief negotiator Saeb Erekat. Israel’s Channel 10 news show also named the source of the leak as a former member of the NSU.

The 1,600 or so documents in the Palestine papers were obtained by al-Jazeera and shared in advance of publication with the Guardian in an effort to ensure the wider availability of their content.

The Guardian has authenticated the bulk of the papers independently, but we have not sought or been given access to the sources of the documents.

Al-Jazeera, who are publishing the papers in full on their website, aljazeera.net, has redacted minimal parts of the papers in order to protect their sources’ identity.

As part of the agreement The Guardian publishing up to eight documents a day in full on guardian.co.uk.

In the course of working with the documents over several weeks, the Guardian has formed its own judgments about specific stories and retained full editorial control of its coverage.

Co-operation between The Guardian and al-Jazeera has been restricted to discussions of the stories and agreeing dates on which we would release the information contained in specific documents.

In the NSU document leaked about Gershon Baskin advocates imposing the two-state solution in the United Nations:

• Baskin calls for the Palestinian leadership to send a letter to the President of the Security Council asking the UNSC to recommend to the GA full UN membership for the State of Palestine based UN resolutions 181, 242, 338.

• If the UNSC votes in favor of recommending to the GA UN membership for the State of Palestine, the GA will follow suit. The UNSC can set the borders of Palestine on the Green line, as it set numerous borders in history, such as the 33rd parallel between the two Koreas, and recently the “blue line” between Lebanon and Israel. Palestine has very strong support in the GA. If the US votes in favor, or even abstains in the SC, the vote in the GA could be possible to reach 185 in favor and 7 against/abstaining, the usual suspects are US, Israel, Marshall Islands, Palau, Micronesia, Nauru and Tonga. Palestine needs two-thirds vote in favor, which currently is 128 votes.

• Once Palestine gets full membership at the United Nations, Baskin argues at that point, the situation on the ground would be of one member-state (Israel) occupying another member-state (Palestine).

Click here to read the document about Gershon Baskin leaked from the Palestinian negotiation support unit (NSU)

The Guardian

The Guardian is a British national daily newspaper.