The Palestinian Authority announced on Sunday that it was unilaterally canceling the division of Judea and Samaria into Areas A, B and C, which has been in effect since the Oslo Accords were signed.

The P.A.’s local authorities minister, acting under instructions from P.A. Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh, instructed heads of Palestinian local authorities in Judea and Samaria to prepare long-term development plans for their areas, regardless of whether the lands in question fall under Palestinian or Israeli civil and security control, or whether they are open public lands or currently populated.

According to the Oslo Accords, Area A includes all Palestinian cities in Judea and Samaria, and is under full P.A. civil and security control. Area B is under P.A. civil control but Israeli security control, while in Area C, which includes most Israeli cities and towns in Judea and Samaria, Israel is in charge of all civil and security matters.

A senior official in Ramallah discussed the P.A.’s decision to disregard the Oslo-mandated division of Judea and Samaria, telling Israel Hayom that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s remarks in Elkana on Sunday, when the prime minister reiterated his earlier promise that Israel would annex more of the West Bank, “had nothing to do with the decision. This is a decision of principle that [P.A. leader Mahmoud] Abbas made as part of the process of detaching [the P.A.] from Israel.”

This article first appeared in Israel Hayom.

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