Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas said on Thursday that no one is responsible for the traffic accident north of Jerusalem, which occurred due to bad weather conditions.
Kol Yisrael radio reported that Abbas made the comments during a visit with casualties from the accident at the hospital in Ramallah.
Nine PA school children and a teacher were killed in the accident, which occurred when a PA bus carrying children collided head-on with a truck driven by an Israeli Arab man. As a result, the bus overturned and caught fire.
Israeli first response teams worked alongside the PA to rescue as many victims as possible. Both MDA and Red Crescent ambulances brought some of the injured children to Israeli hospitals in Jerusalem.
Abbas, who announced after the accident that there would be three days of mourning for the victims, made his remarks after the PA’s Minister of Health accused Israel of being responsible for the deaths in the accident. The minister said Israel did not immediately provide assistance to the wounded.
Deputy Health Minister Ya'akov Litzman rejected the claim, and called the PA minister’s remarks “misplaced lies and incitement.”
“Medical and rescue teams rushed to the scene of the accident and administered the required assistance without hesitation,” said Litzman. “Some of the victims received and are still receiving the best medical care at our hospitals in Israel. Human life has no limits and no politics.”