Abbas warns he may dismantle Palestinian Authority if US-backed peace talks fail

The Palestinian president is warning that if peace talks with Israel fail he may dismantle the Palestinian Authority and hand over responsibility for 2.5 million of his people to Israel.

Mahmoud Abbas told a group of visiting Israeli reporters Tuesday that Israeli policies have left his West Bank government powerless. He said if Israel continues its path "let it come and run this authority."

The nine-month period outlined by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry to reach the outlines of a peace accord ends in a week. The sides remain locked in dispute over the terms of extending talks and have made no apparent progress on major issues.

Abbas said contacts could continue even after the April 29 deadline. For talks to resume, he said Israel must freeze settlement construction.