“The Palestinian Authority is once again trying to divert attention from its problems
at home, and the best way to do this is [by] escalating tensions with Israel - the
Palestinian Authority’s policy since its inception after signing the Oslo Peace Accords in 1993.
“To distract attention from charges of financial corruption and embarrassing sexual
scandals, the Palestinian leadership in the West Bank has stepped up its anti-Israel
rhetoric. Allegations of ‘ethnic cleansing,’ ‘destruction and desecration of Islamic
religious sites,’ ‘apartheid,’ ‘racism,’ ‘land theft’ and ‘conducting medical experiments on Palestinian prisoners’ are directed every day toward Israel by Abbas and his top officials and spokesmen.
“These charges are often backed up by threats to launch a ‘third intifada’ or to resume suicide bombings against Israel.
“Given Abbas’s growing predicament, the likelihood of a new wave of violence in the
West Bank or the Gaza Strip seems to be more realistic than ever.”1
On February 26, 2010, PA Prime Minister Salam Fayyad stated that the Al-Ibrahimi
mosque site in Hebron [the Machpelah] is “an inseparable part of Palestinian lands
occupied in 1967, as is the Gaza strip and eastern Jerusalem.”2
According to NAM News Network:
“After performing Friday prayers (which were held at the Al-Ibrahmi mosque3),
Fayyad said that the Palestinian people stand together in facing the Israeli
decision to list Al-Ibrahimi mosque and Rachel Tomb (sic) – a mosque – both on
Palestinian land, as Israeli UNESCO (sic) heritage sites.
“He stressed that Israel by this, breaches international law, having no claim over
the land, which the Palestinians have full rights to.”4
He further warned of an increased risk of violence as a result of the Israeli government decision on the sites, adding "we are all united against the decision of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and against the terror of the settlers.”5
Several sources reported that Fayyad accused Israel of having “annexed” the site.
On February 23, 2010, PA President Mahmoud Abbas referred to the decision of the
Netanyahu government to add the Machpelah in Hebron and Kever Rachel outside of
Bethlehem to the list of national Heritage sites as a “severe provocation” that could
lead to a “war of religions” and possibly a new intifada.7
The Palestinian Authority daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, reported on February 20, 2010,
that Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad praised the popular resistance in the
village of Bil'in at a rally marking six years of struggle against the separation fence.8
See the full report at Israel Behind the News