Advertisement

Palestinians will never recognize Israel as Jewish state, Abbas says

Palestinian Authority president accuses Israel of setting up an apartheid state; threatens to halt security cooperation.

By
UPI Staff
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas (L) and members of the PLO swear in the new Palestinian unity government in the Presidential compound in Ramallah, West Bank, June 2, 2014. It is the first time in seven years that Hamas and Fatah have joined together in unity to have one government in charge of the West Bank and Gaza. Israel denied three ministers from Hamas in Gaza to enter the West Bank for the ceremony. UPI/Debbie Hill
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas (L) and members of the PLO swear in the new Palestinian unity government in the Presidential compound in Ramallah, West Bank, June 2, 2014. It is the first time in seven years that Hamas and Fatah have joined together in unity to have one government in charge of the West Bank and Gaza. Israel denied three ministers from Hamas in Gaza to enter the West Bank for the ceremony. UPI/Debbie Hill | License Photo

CAIRO, Nov. 29 (UPI) -- If the United Nations fails to adopt a resolution affirming Palestinian statehood, the Palestinian Authority will reassess its security cooperation with Israel and seek membership in the International Criminal Court, President Mahmoud Abbas said on Saturday.

Speaking to Arab League foreign ministers at a meeting in Cairo, Abbas also accused Israel of harboring an apartheid government instead of working to advance the peace process.

Advertisement

"We will never recognize the Jewishness of the state of Israel," Abbas was quoted as saying by Israel's Channel 10, an apparent reference to Israel's proposed Nationality Law.

During the meeting, Arab League foreign ministers agreed to present a draft resolution to the United Nations Security Council setting a time frame for the creation of a Palestinian state but did not indicate when the resolution would be presented.

RELATED Mahmoud Abbas asks U.N. for timetable for Israeli withdrawal

Abbas told the gathering that Palestinians were unable to continue waiting while "Israel creates facts on the ground through the continued building of settlements."

If the U.N. resolution fails and negotiations are not renewed based on the 1967 borders and an end to the Israeli occupation, Abbas said the Palestinians will seek membership in certain international organizations including the International Criminal Court in the Hague.

"We will also reassess our ties with Israel, including ending the security cooperation between us," Abbas said.

RELATED Kerry holds trilateral meeting with Jordan and Israel leaders over Jerusalem tensions

Political relations between Abbas and the Israeli leadership are at a low point and Abbas has been a frequent target of criticism from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, accusing him of "terrorism and murder" following a string of recent attacks against Israelis.

U.S. efforts to broker negotiations between Jerusalem and Ramallah ended in April after being pursued for about a year by Secretary of State John Kerry.

"We have given the Americans every possible opportunity and we have repeatedly postponed taking action until we turned into a laughing stock," Abbas said in asking the foreign ministers to support the resolution to the Security Council.

RELATED Abbas: Closure of holy site in Jerusalem 'declaration of war'

Latest Headlines