PA gives no indication of calling for West Bank calm

February 24, 2013 16:58

A senior aide to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas gave no indication the Authority, which exercises limited self-rule in the occupied West Bank, would issue any call for calm, and blamed Israel for the spike in unrest.

Yasser Abed Rabbo, a senior Abbas aide, said Israel's treatment of prisoners and anti-Palestinian violence by Jewish settlers were "the cause of the deterioration".

Amos Gilad, a senior Israeli Defense Ministry official, questioned whether the protests were just a tactical move by the Palestinians to draw international attention before Obama's visit to Israel, the West Bank and Jordan. But he added, in an Israel Radio interview: "Things can get out of control."

The death in an Israeli jail of a Palestinian detainee on Saturday and an on-going hunger strike by four inmates have fueled tensions in the West Bank, where stone-throwing protesters clashed again with Israeli soldiers on Sunday.

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