President Mahmoud Abbas said yesterday that Israel’s continuous measures against the Palestinian people, especially in occupied Jerusalem, the most recent of which was the arrest of journalists working for Palestine TV, violates signed agreements.
Speaking at the start of a meeting of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) at the presidential headquarters in Ramallah, Abbas said that “there are agreements between us and the Israelis that all of these institutions, including the Orient House, are to continue to function in Jerusalem and carry out their work normally, just as any Palestinian institution operating anywhere in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Yet Israel prevents everyone from working,” stressing that this situation will not be allowed to continue.
He also made reference to the American hospital in the Gaza Strip with the arrival of equipment and personnel at the site to start establishing it, in addition to other economic projects planned for Gaza, including an artificial port island and an airport, along with Israeli plans to build a new settlement in the heart of the southern West Bank city of Hebron, which he stressed “are things that cannot be tolerated.”
He stressed that “if these things continue to be implemented, then all of our written and agreed upon agreements between us and Israel and the United States will be null, and we will all work and prepare ourselves from now for this moment, because we cannot bear to see them annex the land piece by piece as we watch.”
On the issue of the elections, President Abbas said, “There are talks with Hamas so that we can stand on solid ground, which is full approval by Hamas, and after there is an agreement, there remains another important issue which is holding elections in Jerusalem, because elections must take place in the West Bank, in Jerusalem and in Gaza, and if we cannot do that, we will come back to this table to decide what we can do. The elections are essential, necessary, and have to be done, but not at any price. They must be in the right way that guarantees the full representation of our people everywhere on the Palestinian land, particularly in Jerusalem.”