Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas on Wednesday accused Israel of “committing genocide” in Gaza during its military campaign there.
"It's genocide - the killing of entire families is genocide by Israel against our Palestinian people," AFP quoted Abbas as having told a crisis meeting of the PA leadership in Ramallah.
"What's happening now is a war against the Palestinian people as a whole and not against the (militant) factions,” he charged.
"We know that Israel is not defending itself, it is defending settlements, its main project," added Abbas.
The PA Chairman said that he was "moving in several ways to stop the Israeli aggression and spilling of Palestinian blood, including talking to Egyptian President (Abdel Fattah) al-Sisi and UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon."
Abbas’s accusations come one day after he threatened to turn to the international community if Israel does not stop its airstrikes on Gaza.
"The Palestinian Authority will go to all international organizations to seek protection for the Palestinian people," he said in a televised statement late Tuesday night.
That threat from Abbas was the latest in several verbal attacks he has launched against the Jewish state in recent days. On Monday night, Abbas demanded that Israel stop the airstrikes on Gaza and called them a “dangerous Israeli escalation”, but failed to condemn the rocket attacks from Gaza on southern Israel.
Wednesday’s statement on the so-called “genocide” in Gaza was made on the same day that Abbas compared the murder of Arab teen Mohammed Abu Khder to the Nazi extermination of millions at Auschwitz.
In a television interview, he said, “What shall we say about Abu Khder? Shall we mention Auschwitz again?”
Abbas's doctoral thesis infamously claimed that the number of Jews murdered in the Holocaust is much lower than historians say. It downgraded the number of Holocaust victims to “[possibly] below one million,” and accused Zionist leaders of encouraging the persecution of Jews.
It also denied that the gas chambers were used to murder Jews, quoting a "scientific study" to that effect by French Holocaust-denier Robert Faurisson.