PA fears Islamic State threat taking world's attention away from Palestinian issue

Erekat says reason behind the extremism in the region is the continuation of the "Israeli occupation," the suffering of the Palestinian people and the "terror" carried out by Israel and settlers.

September 14, 2014 09:04
1 minute read.
cairo talks

Palestinian chief negotiator Saeb Erekat (L) talks with Arab League Chief Nabil el-Araby during their meeting at the Arab League in Cairo August 11, 2014.. (photo credit: REUTERS)

The Palestinian Authority has expressed concern that the international coalition against Islamic State would divert attention from the Palestinian issue.

PA President Mahmoud Abbas chaired a meeting of the Palestinian leadership in Ramallah over the weekend to discuss the US efforts to form a coalition to fight Islamic State terrorists in Iraq and Syria.

Following the meeting, the Palestinian leaders said the “international campaign against terrorism was currently lacking a political dimension that would address the issues of the region.”

They also warned that the campaign did not deal with the “core and central issue, which is the Palestinian cause, so that it would be able to dry up the sources that feed terrorism and extremism.”

The Palestinian leaders called on Arab, regional and international parties to insist on linking their anti-terrorism campaign to a political dimension and not to focus solely on military and security aspects.

Nabil Abu Rudaineh, spokesman for the PA presidency, said that without solving the Palestinian issue “there would be no solutions for the problems of the region.”

Abu Rudaineh added that any regional alliances should lead to “ending the occupation and preserving the national rights of the Palestinians.

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