Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman on Friday night took aim at Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas for his unilateral moves for statehood at the UN, accusing him of trying to divert attention from domestic policy failures.

Speaking at Saban Forum in Washington DC, Liberman said "Hamas is more effective and has more political will and determination than Abbas."

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Liberman also defended a new Israeli settlement expansion plan on Friday, saying "we're trying not to provoke" with construction by adding that it is "our right to define our capital."