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Abbas: Israel rejects 'two-state solution'

Mahmoud Abbas, chairman of the Palestinian Liberation Organization and president of the Palestinian Authority, addresses the 67th session of the General Assembly at the United Nations in New York, Sept. 27, 2012. UPI/Monika Graff
Mahmoud Abbas, chairman of the Palestinian Liberation Organization and president of the Palestinian Authority, addresses the 67th session of the General Assembly at the United Nations in New York, Sept. 27, 2012. UPI/Monika Graff | License Photo

UNITED NATIONS, Sept. 27 (UPI) -- Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas told the United Nations Thursday Israel "rejects the two-state solution" for peace.

The Palestinian president said there "can only be one reading of the Israeli government's actions in our homeland (the West Bank). ... That one understanding leads to one conclusion: That the Israeli government rejects the two-state solution."

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Abbas spoke to the U.N. General Assembly before an address by Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.

The Palestinian Authority is seeking recognition as an independent nation by the United Nations. The United States has blocked U.N. consideration of the two-state solution.

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Abbas cited what he called an aggressive Israeli position on West Bank settlements and settlers on land claimed by Palestinians, saying the position "is the inherent byproduct of the racist climate fueled by a culture of incitement in the Israeli curriculum, and extremist opinions which are rife with hatred and are rooted in a series of discriminatory laws created and enacted over the years against the Palestinian people, as well as by the security apparatus and courts, which provide excuse after excuse for settlers' crimes and for their accelerated release should one of them happen to be arrested, and by official and military commissions of inquiry which fabricate excuses for soldiers who have committed what are clearly considered war crimes and perpetrated acts of murder, torture and abuse of peaceful civilians."

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Abbas said the settlement campaign, "focusing on Jerusalem and its environs ... is a campaign clearly and deliberately aimed at altering the city's historic character and glorious image of the Holy City etched in the minds of mankind. It is a campaign of ethnic cleansing. ... "

Abbas said: "We are confident that the vast majority of the countries of the world support our endeavor aimed at salvaging the chances for a just peace. In our endeavor, we do not seek to delegitimize an existing state -- that is Israel -- but rather to assert the state that must be realized -- that is Palestine.

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"We are not attempting to delegitimize them. They are trying to delegitimize us."

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