Palestinian Presidents, Mahmoud Abbas, delivered Thursday a speech at the United Nations in New York calling on the International Community to act and help the Palestinians establish their independent state. Abbas said that attacks carried out by extremist Israeli settlers against the Palestinians, their property and their holy sites are witnessing a serious escalation, and added that these escalated attacks are “the natural outcome of the ongoing Israeli occupation of Palestine”.
He also stated that Israel’s ongoing settlement construction and expansion activities are serious threats to stability and peace in the region, and called on the International Community to act on ensuring that Israel respects, and abides by, International Law and the Fourth Geneva Convention.
As for the thousands of Palestinians imprisoned by Israel, Abbas stated that the detainees are freedom fighters, and must be released.
The president said that he represents the Palestinian people and is speaking on their behalf, adding that “the Palestinians are angry, they adopted and are engaged in nonviolent resistance against the occupation, but are still suffering under occupation and facing constant attacks by the soldiers and the settlers”.
He added that Israel is acting on keeping East Jerusalem under its occupation, is annexing large areas on the occupied West Bank, and refuses to hold talks on core issues, including the issue of Palestinian refugees. “Yet, Israel is being rewarded for its ongoing occupation, for its ongoing settlement policies”, Abbas said.
Abbas also warned that the current Israeli political rhetoric is leading the region into the deadly paths of religious conflicts, and added that Israel is ethnically cleansing the Palestinians from their lands.
The President further stated that Israel’s current policy is aimed at sabotaging the work of the Palestinian National Authority, in order to weaken and topple it.
He said that the Israeli policy and the stances of the current government of Benjamin Netanyahu reject the two-state solution, while Israel is ongoing with the illegal construction of settlements and the illegal confiscation of Palestinian lands in order to build and expand settlements.
Abbas also said that the Palestinian Authority is committed to the peace process, and all international legitimacy resolutions, but added that “what Israel is doing right now is creating a new Nakba (catastrophe) to the entire nation of Palestine”.
The president stated that heading to the United Nations seeking international recognition and a full UN membership is not a unilateral act, and that the P.A. will continue to file applications at different UN institutions despite Israel and American pressures.
“We are committed to the peace process”, the President elaborated, “But we cannot hold talks that are not based on solid and clear foundations, the Security Council must take action and issue a resolution that determines the core issues of the conflict”.
“We are not trying to isolate Israel, or delegitimize it, but Tel Aviv is trying to isolate and choke us”, Abbas said, “We will continue our efforts; establishing an independent state is a sacred right, a right that should have been achieved decades ago”.
Referring to nonviolent, popular, resistance against the occupation, settlements and the Apartheid Wall Abbas said that this resistance will continue, and the Palestinian people will remain steadfast in their own homeland.
He also warned that the International Community must support the establishment of a stable, sovereign and independent Palestinian State “before it is too late”.
“Israel is refusing to end its occupation, and refusing to grant the Palestinians their legitimate rights”, the President said, “The Security Council must act fast, and issue a resolution that will be the foundation, the guide, and the core of the two-state solution, this is the only way to achieve a lasting and comprehensive peace in the land of peace”.
He also denounced Israel for violating the Fourth Geneva Convention in its violations against the Palestinian people and the Palestinian political prisoners.
The president concluded by stating that peace in the Middle East is still possible, but fading away, and urged the International Community to save it, and to ensure that real peace talks are conducted as Israel used peace talks to continue its violations, to build and expand settlements on the expense of the Palestinian people and their lands.
The Hamas movement said that the speech of Abbas is a repetition of the same rhetoric adopted by the Palestinian Liberation Organization, and is based on the two-state solution despite the fact that this speech admitted to the failure of the entire political process that failed to achieve any positive results to the Palestinian people.
Hamas said that the speech managed to describe the suffering of the Palestinian people living under illegal Israeli occupation, and the suffering inflicted on them by Israel’s settlement construction and expansion policies, but added that Abbas “is still betting on the two-state solution and the recognition of Israel”.
Hamas spokesperson, Dr. Sami Abu Zuhri, stated that Abbas’s UN Application regarding recognizing Palestine as a nonmember State is a unilateral move that was not coordinated with the Palestinian factions despite the fact that such an issue affects the destiny and the future of the Palestinian people.
Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, also delivered a speech at the UN mainly focusing on what he called “the Iranian Threat” and “Iran’s Nuclear Agenda”, and said that the United States and Israel share the same interests and threats.
Netanyahu presented a diagram allegedly showing the progress that Iran managed to achieve in enriching Uranium and “how close Tehran is to developing nuclear weapons”.
He said that “the International Community must act before it is too late”, and refrained from addressing Israel’s illegal occupation of Palestine and its illegal settlement activities.
Netanyahu claimed that Iran is now %70 towards the development of nuclear weapons, and added that by next summer “Iran will be concluding the second stage and will be moving towards the final state”.
“In a few weeks from now, Iran will have enough enriched Uranium to build a nuclear bomb”, the Israeli Prime Minister claimed, “The International Community does not have enough time to stop the Islamic Republic, and we must seriously consider the threat of force against the country”.
Netanyahu added that he believes Iran will stop if faced with a clear Red Line, and added that “this Red Line will grant the International Community the needed time to impose sanctions and to engage in diplomacy”.