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Mideast peace talk leaks destabilising: Blair

Last Updated: Friday, January 28, 2011 - 21:21

London: Middle East envoy Tony Blair said
on Friday he believed the leak of hundreds of documents on the
Israel-Palestinian peace negotiations was "destabilising".

"I think it is hard to tell right now but its
intention was to be extremely damaging," Blair told the BBC
from the world economic forum in Davos, after being asked
about the leaks to the Al-Jazeera television station.

Citing one of his successes when he was Britain`s
prime minister, he said: "We couldn`t have done the Northern
Ireland peace process if the entire time everything was being
put out there, with frankly a pretty severe spin on it.

"So I think it is destabilising for the Palestinians.
"However, I think we have just got to be big enough
and strong enough to say `OK, look, whatever Al-Jazeera is
putting out, we are just going to get on with making peace`."

The leak of more than 1,600 documents has shaken the
Palestinian Authority, revealing that it offered Israel
far-reaching concessions on the sensitive subjects of
Jerusalem and refugees during peace talks.

In the West Bank, demonstrators have offered their
support for Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas, but in the
Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip, protests have been held criticising
Abbas for "collaborating" with Israel.

Blair was Britain`s prime minister between 1997 and
2007 and is currently envoy for the Middle East diplomatic
Quartet of the European Union, Russia, the United Nations and
the United States.


First Published: Friday, January 28, 2011 - 21:21
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