At a meeting with leftist MKs Monday, Palestinian Authority chief Mahmoud Abbas expressed his desire to achieve “peace with Israel. We do not want bloodshed, we want peace,” Abbas told the MKs, members of a Knesset lobby seeking to set up a PA state in Judea and Samaria.
Weeks after they were killed, Abbas discussed murders of IDF soldiers Gabriel (Gal) Kobi and Tomer Hazan, as well as the shooting of nine year old Noam Glick on Saturday night. Abbas has not condemned the murders and attacks, much less sought to capture the terrorists who committed them, as is his obligation under the Oslo Accords. He did say, however, that he condemned “violence on both sides,” adding that he believed Israel and the PA could achieve an agreement in a matter of months.
Abbas said that security cooperation between Israel and the PA was “good,” but added that IDF entries into areas under PA control was “damaging.”
On Sunday, Arutz Sheva reported that Palestinian Authority police freely travel on roads in Area C, the areas of Judea and Samaria under Israeli civilian and military control. The Samaria Residents Council has logged dozens of witness accounts of drivers who have observed PA police cars traveling on roads used by Israeli civilians in Judea and Samaria. According to the Oslo Accords, such vehicles are supposed to be accompanied by IDF vehicles, but in almost all the cases, IDF vehicles were nowhere to be seen.
Abbas also condemned “attacks by settlers against Palestinian property, homes, churches and mosques,” and called on the Israeli government to prevent them. He also condemned unspecified “Jewish attacks on Palestinians on the Temple Mount,” and warned that such attacks “could lead to dangerous results that no one will be able to control.”
His ccomments about the Temple Mount may have been a reference to the peaceful ascent of Jewish pilgrims to Judaism's holiest site, which have increased in recent months in spite of fierce opposition by Muslim groups to any Jewish presence there. Despite the peaceable nature of such visits, they are regularly referred to as "attacks" by non-Muslims on the Islamic complex which is located at the site, atop the ruins of the two Jewish Temples which once stood there.
The delegation was led by MK Hilik Bar (Labor), who told Abbas that the majority of MKs agreed with the comments Abbas had made. Bar condemned the terror attack Saturday night, saying that “there are extremists on both sides.”