|PA President Mahmoud Abbas at the UN 370 (R).(Photo by: Lucas Jackson / Reuters)|
Abbas vows to continue UN bid for status upgrade
By KHALED ABU TOAMEH
PA president claims Pillar of Defense was aimed at thwarting Palestinian effort.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas claimed Friday that the IDF
military offensive against the Gaza Strip was aimed at thwarting his plan to ask
the UN General Assembly to upgrade the status of a Palestinian state to
Abbas and other senior PA officials have thus far refrained
from holding Hamas responsible for the latest round of violence, as they had
done in the past. Instead, the PA leadership has directed all its criticism
“All what Israel is doing is aimed at hindering our effort
at the UN,” Abbas said in a televised speech. He was speaking shortly after
returning to Ramallah from Switzerland.
“But we are going on November 29
to the UN to obtain the status of non-member and no one could stop under any
Abbas also accused Israel of pursuing a scheme to
“destroy the Palestinian national project.”
Abbas said that the current
Israeli “aggression against the Palestinian people and the ongoing settlement
construction show that Israel continues to deny the rights of our
Israel, he added, must understand that without peace no one
would be able to live in security. Abbas also warned Israel against
“perpetrating more massacres against the Palestinians.”
Abbas said that
he has asked the Arab League to dispatch a ministerial delegation to the Gaza
Strip to express solidarity with the Palestinians there.
that he had tried several times to phone Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh to
talk to him about the situation in the Gaza Strip, but to no
Abbas, meanwhile, met in Ramallah Saturday with Egyptian envoy
Yasser Othman and discussed with him the latest developments.
meeting, Abbas praised Egyptian Prime Minister Hisham Kandil for visiting the
Gaza Strip on Friday and urged Cairo to pursue its efforts to achieve a
cease-fire with Israel.
Ahmed Assaf, a Fatah spokesman in the West Bank,
said that Abbas’s insistence on pursuing the statehood bid was a “victory for
the blood of the Palestinian martyrs.”
Assaf said that the application to
the UN later this month was also designed to foil Israel’s plot to “Judaize our
land, eliminate our presence in Jerusalem and destroy our national
In a separate development, Abbas’s Fatah militiamen announced
Saturday that they would participate in the fighting alongside Hamas and other
armed groups if the IDF invades the Gaza Strip.
Abu Ahed, spokesman for
Fatah’s armed wing, Aksa Martyrs Brigades, called on the Israeli public to
“topple” the government of Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu.
spokesman claimed that Netanyahu was waging war on the Gaza Strip to improve his
chances of winning the upcoming general election in Israel. The Fatah spokesman
threatened to turn the Gaza Strip into a “cemetery for Israeli soldiers.”