Liberman: The world has stopped paying attention to Abbas

Before leaving for the UN General Assembly in NY, FM tells Army Radio that he cannot recall a time at the forum when the Palestinian conflict has taken a back seat to such an extent as now.

Avigdor Liberman (photo credit: REUTERS)
Avigdor Liberman
(photo credit: REUTERS)
The world has stopped paying attention to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman told Army Radio on Sunday before leaving Israel for New York to attend the opening session of the United Nations 69th General Assembly.
“The man is not a partner for anything, certainly not a diplomatic one. He has exhausted everyone, not just the Israelis, but the entire international community. Even the Arab world has tired of Abu Mazen (Abbas),” Liberman said.
“I cannot recall a time when the Palestinian conflict has taken a back seat to such an extent as it has at these opening sessions. They are talking about everything, Ebola, Iraq, ISIS, the Ukraine. But the Palestinian issue is almost nonexistent. We have to understand that to talk about a breakthrough or a new diplomatic horizon, you can’t do it alone,” Liberman said.
“You need a trusted partner, a serious partner, one who can deliver on the goods,” Liberman said.
He spoke in reaction to Abbas’s speech before the UN General Assembly on Friday in which the Palestinian leader accused Israel of committing genocide against the Palestinian people. He also spoke of a plan to push for a UN Security Council resolution that would set a time-table for a two-state solution at the pre-1967 line.
Liberman said years before such a speech in which Abbas accused Israel of war crimes, he understood that Abbas was harmful to the peace process.
“I came to my conclusions many years ago. I am sorry that it took others such a long time to get there,” Liberman said.
“If we had not wasted time with Abu Mazen we would have gotten to better results. But we should not dictate to the Palestinians who should be their leaders,” Liberman said.
While in New York Liberman will meet with his counterparts from India, Canada, New Zealand, Uganda, Austria, the Czech Republic, Malta and Rwanda. He will also meet with the new UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Prince Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein of Jordan.
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu also headed to New York on Sunday. He will address the UN General Assembly on Monday and meet with its Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. The prime minister will travel to Washington on Wednesday for a meeting with US President Barack Obama.