Hamas responded on Wednesday to Israel’s sanctions on the Palestinian Authority (PA) by calling on Palestinian Arabs in Judea and Samaria to "give full rein" to “resistance against the Israeli occupation”, the Ma’an news agency reported.
The terror group which controls Gaza also called on the PA to end its security cooperation with Israel.
The call came hours after Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu ordered government officials to stop cooperation with PA officials as part of a round of sanctions on the PA, after it breached the conditions of the peace talks by unilaterally going to the United Nations.
Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoun said that PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas should take advantage of Netanyahu's decision and end all aspects of security coordination with Israel.
Abbas should let “resistance deter the Israeli occupation and defend our people, our land, and our holy places," Barhoun said in a statement quoted by Ma’an.
He said that Abbas should end negotiations and “recruit regional and international opposition to the occupation.”
The failure of the peace talks so far proves that Hamas was correct in its view that negotiations with Israel only have a negative impact on the Palestinian people, the statement said.
Barhoun also urged Arab countries to support regional and international divestment from Israel.
Last Thursday, Israel informed the PA of a series of punitive measures against it, following the PA’s request to join 15 international conventions.
The Arab League on Wednesday blamed Israel for the impasse in the peace talks, but called on the United States to keep up efforts to salvage the talks.
On Tuesday, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, who urged the sides to resume talks last July, blamed Israel for the breakdown of peace talks last week.
"Israel didn't release the Palestinian prisoners on the day they were supposed to be freed, and another day passed, and another day, and then another 700 settlement units were announced in Jerusalem, and 'poof'...that was sort of the moment," remarked Kerry before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee
Shortly after Kerry’s testimony was made public, State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki tried to do some damage control, and quickly stated Kerry did not intend to point the finger at the Jewish state.
Kerry on Wednesday met with Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman and reiterated that he had not blamed Israel for the failure of peace talks. Kerry claimed instead that he merely "described the sequence of events" and the "natural difficulties of discussing such a complex and difficult issue."