Abbas: Israel's actions leading the region to a devastating religious war

PA president speaks at memorial marking ten years since Arafat's death; slams Hamas for hurting reconciliation and efforts to rebuild Gaza.

Mahmoud Abbas (photo credit: REUTERS)
Mahmoud Abbas
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said Tuesday that Israel's actions were leading the region to a devastating religious war, Bethlehem-based Ma'an News Agency reported.
The PA president's comments came amid tensions at the Temple Mount in Jerusalem and Arab fears that Israel was seeking to change the status quo at the site which is holy to both Jews and Muslims.
Abbas was speaking at a Ramallah event marking the 10-year anniversary of the death of former Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat.
He reiterated his intention to go to the UN Security Council this month with a resolution that would recognize a Palestinian state on the pre-1967 lines. He said that, should his efforts at the UN fail, he would apply to join a number of international conventions and organizations, including the International Criminal Court to pursue war crimes charges against Israel.
"The Palestinian territories are no longer in all of the 67 disputed land because Israel is constantly trying to impose its illegal settlements," he said.
Abbas also attacked Hamas for causing the cancellation of a planned memorial for Arafat in Gaza.
He blamed Hamas for a series of bomb attacks against Fatah officials, which included an attack on the site where the Arafat memorial was scheduled to take place. 
He said that Hamas was acting against "reconciliation and national unity."
Abbas blamed Hamas for hampering efforts to rebuild Gaza following Operation Protective Edge.