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Abbas and PLO side with Hamas in desperate attempt to be relevant
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Abbas and PLO side with Hamas 
in desperate attempt to be relevant

By Maurice Hirsch and Nan Jacques Zilberdik

Starting on May 4th through the early hours of May 6th, the Palestinian terrorists from Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad fired close to 700 rockets from the Gaza Strip at Israel, targeting civilian population centers. To defend its population, the Israeli Air Force responded by targeting the terrorist groups’ infrastructure and a number of their members.

Instead of condemning the Palestinian terrorists who committed war crimes by firing hundreds of rockets, mortars, and missiles targeting Israel’s civilian population, PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas decided to give them full support. Similar support was also given by officials in the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), also headed by Abbas. At the same time, Abbas’ Fatah party referred to all of Israel as “occupied” and all Israelis as “settlers.”

Completely ignoring the actions of the terrorists, Abbas condemned only the “Israeli aggression.” He also lied claiming that the Israeli response to the barrage of terrorist missiles had claimed the life of a pregnant Palestinian and her 14 month old baby. In fact, the mother and baby were killed by a Hamas rocket that fell short.

“President Mahmoud Abbas strongly condemned today the Israeli aggression on the Gaza Strip which so far claimed the lives of seven Palestinians, including a toddler and her pregnant mother.”
[WAFA, official PA news agency, May 4, 2019]

Abbas even instructed the PA’s permanent representative to the UN “to consider calling for a meeting of the UN Security Council to bring a halt to the Israeli aggression.” [WAFA, official PA news agency, May 5, 2019]

Similarly ignoring reality, PLO Executive Committee member Hanan Ashrawi failed to even acknowledge any of the terrorist missile attacks, and paradoxically referred to Israel’s defensive measures as “war crimes.” She likewise lied accusing Israel of “indiscriminately bombarding heavily populated civilian areas.” In fact, Israel’s defensive strikes deliberately only targeted known terrorist targets. She too repeated the false claim that Israel was responsible for the death of the mother and baby.

“We grieve for 13 Palestinians lost since this brutal assault started on Friday, including Falasteen, a pregnant mother, her unborn child, and Saba her 14 month-old baby.”
[WAFA, official PA news agency, May 5, 2019]

Saeb Erakat, Secretary General and Chief Negotiator of the PLO, similarly ignored the hundreds of missiles fired by the Palestinian terrorist groups and condemned only the “Israel aggression”:

“We hold the Israeli government fully responsible for this aggression and call upon Egypt the UN and others in the international community to continue exerting every possible effort to restore calm.”
[WAFA, official PA news agency, May 5, 2019]

Erekat also falsely blamed Israel for the death of the mother and her baby.
The Israeli army announced that the death of the mother and her child was caused by a Hamas rocket and this was echoed by the Gaza News Agency:

[Gaza News Agency Twitter account, May 4, 2019]

Exposing their true sentiments, which sees all Israeli towns and cities as “settlements,” and all Jews living in Israel as “settlers,” Abbas’ Fatah party reported that the terrorist missiles raining down on Israel’s south were shot at “settlements” and referred to Israel as “southern occupied Palestine.” The man from the Israeli city Ashekelon who was killed was called a “settler.” 

 
Posted text: “News flash | news sources: The Israeli occupation decides to stop the daily routine tomorrow [May 5, 2019] in all of the educational institutions in southern occupied Palestine (i.e., southern Israel).”
Posted text: “Report of a rocket falling on the settlement of ‘Ofakim’ (sic., an Israeli town west of Be’er Sheva) after being fired from the Gaza Strip.”
Part of posted text:
“[Fatah Revolutionary Council Secretary Majed] Al-Fatiani emphasized that the time has come for Israel and its settlers to deal with the fact that our people will not succumb.”
Posted text: “#News_flash
The death of the Israeli settler due to a rocket that fell in Ashkelon has been officially acknowledged. The aforementioned person was 60 (sic., 58).”
 
[Official Fatah Facebook page, May 4-5, 2019]
The statements by Abbas, his Fatah party, and the PLO officials are significant for a number of reasons.

For many months, as part of the internal Palestinian power struggle, Abbas has been denying funds to the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip. These actions have considerably contributed to the Gaza financial crisis. Now, when the Gazan terrorist organizations are attacking Israel, suddenly Abbas choses to ignore the terrorist actions and comes to the defense of the Gazan Palestinians - to gain popularity as a supporter of aggression against Israel.

The statements by Abbas and the PLO officials are reflective of a desperate attempt by Abbas and the PLO to remain relevant as regards the Hamas-controlled Gaza. While the Abbas-led PLO still insists that it is the “sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people,” Hamas which is not at present a member of the PLO, has the support of not only many Palestinians in Gaza but also many of the Palestinians in the West Bank. By supporting the aggression of Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad, Abbas and the PLO are attempting to stamp their fading influence as THE representative of the Palestinians.

Seen in their entirety, the events of the last few days raise another question: When considering the parties to the US as of yet undisclosed peace plan, the identities of the US and Israeli counterparts - US President Donald Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu - are very clear. But who will represent the Palestinians? The PLO or Hamas?

The following are the articles from WAFA:

President Abbas condemns Israel’s aggression on Gaza

RAMALLAH, Saturday, May 04, 2019 (WAFA) - President Mahmoud Abbas strongly condemned today the Israeli aggression on the Gaza Strip which so far claimed the lives of seven Palestinians, including a toddler and her pregnant mother.
“The silence towards Israel's crimes and violations of international law encourages it to continue committing more crimes against our Palestinian people,” the president said in a press statement.

Palestine pondering asking Security Council to convene over Gaza situation

RAMALLAH, Sunday, May 05, 2019 (WAFA) - President Mahmoud Abbas instructed Palestine's permanent representative to the United Nations, Riyad Mansour, to consider calling for a meeting of the UN Security Council to bring a halt to the Israeli aggression on the Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip, said Nabil Abu Rudeineh, spokesman for President Abbas.
He said "the horrific silence of the international community is what encourages Israel to continue with its crimes against our people."
He said President Abbas is making calls to different parties to bring a halt to the ongoing Israeli attacks and secure international protection for the Palestinian people.

Ashrawi of PLO: Israel's attacks are criminal and morally reprehensible

RAMALLAH, Sunday, May 05, 2019 (WAFA) - Hanan Ashrawi, member of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), said the ongoing Israeli escalation against the captive Palestinian population in the Gaza Strip is a continuation of the war crimes Israel has been committing against the Palestinian people for the past half a century.
“ Israel has turned Gaza into the largest open-air prison in the world, choking life and hope out of the besieged and occupied territory while indiscriminately bombarding heavily populated civilian areas, including seven residential buildings that were completely destroyed, four houses, three media offices and a mosque, said Ashrawi in a statement.
She added that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's assault campaign is a cynical attempt to inflict pain on and terrorize the captive Palestinians of Gaza for political gains during his coalition negotiations. “Targeting defenseless civilians is criminal and morally reprehensible and must be condemned unequivocally.”
We grieve for 13 Palestinians lost since this brutal assault started on Friday, including Falasteen, a pregnant mother, her unborn child, and Saba her 14 month-old baby, said Ashrawi.
“ It is an inexcusable affront to global legal and political order as well as Israel's obligations under international law. The blind and amoral support of the Trump administration for the Israeli brutality and Impunity has emboldened such extreme and ruthless military assaults and collective victimization.”
The international community has the responsibility to end this escalation and to protect the rights and lives of two million Palestinians who are under siege and indiscriminate bombardment, without any access to safety or any form of protection, the statement concluded.

Palestine pondering asking Security Council to convene over Gaza situation

RAMALLAH, Sunday, May 05, 2019 (WAFA) - President Mahmoud Abbas instructed Palestine's permanent representative to the United Nations, Riyad Mansour, to consider calling for a meeting of the UN Security Council to bring a halt to the Israeli aggression on the Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip, said Nabil Abu Rudeineh, spokesman for President Abbas.
He said "the horrific silence of the international community is what encourages Israel to continue with its crimes against our people."
He said President Abbas is making calls to different parties to bring a halt to the ongoing Israeli attacks and secure international protection for the Palestinian people.


PLO Erekat blames Israel for escalation in Gaza

RAMALLAH, Sunday, May 05, 2019 (WAFA) - Saeb Erakat, Secretary General of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PlO) condemned yesterday the Israeli aggression on Gaza which so far claimed the lives of 10 Palestinians.
“5 Palestinians, including Saba Abu Arar (14 months infant) were killed by the Israeli occupying power,” he said in a statement.
“We hold the Israeli government fully responsible for this aggression and call upon Egypt the UN and others in the international community to continue exerting every possible effort to restore calm.”


 


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