On 23 January 2011, as U.S. efforts to revive Israeli-Palestinian peace talks floundered, the Qatar-based al-Jazeera satellite TV channel and Britain's Guardian newspaper released a set of documents, written mostly by Palestinian officials (the “Palestine Papers”), claimed to be “the confidential record of ten years of efforts to seek a peace agreement with Israel.” The more than 1,600 pages of documents dating from September 1999 to September 2010 came mostly from the PLO Negotiation Affairs Department (PLONAD) and its successor body, the Negotiations Support Unit (NSU) headed by chief negotiator Saeb Erakat, and included memos, emails, maps, minutes of private meetings, accounts of high-level exchanges, strategy papers, and Power Point presentations. The papers were leaked (apparently by several PLONAD/NSU staff) to al-Jazeera. Timed with the release, al-Jazeera launched a series (1/23–26) of hour-long programs to discuss the contents of the leaked material thematically: Jerusalem, settlements, and borders; refugees and right of return; PA security coordination with Israel; and the negotiations process.

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