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Abbas Threatens to Pursue Israel Over 'Gaza Crimes'

PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas slams Israel, vows to make an effort to "stop the aggression on Gaza".
By Elad Benari
First Publish: 7/23/2014, 4:13 AM

Mahmoud Abbas
Mahmoud Abbas
Flash 90

Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas launched a scathing attack on Israel on Tuesday night, and vowed to pursue the Jewish state over its self-defense operation in Gaza.

Speaking at a meeting of the PA’s leadership in Ramallah, Abbas declared, "The leadership will make an effort to stop the aggression on Gaza.”

He went on to claim that Israel has violated all the international laws in its operation in Gaza, stressing that "we will pursue the perpetrators of the crimes against our people, until they are punished."

Abbas claimed that Israel's goal was to "undermine the internal unity and reconciliation, but we will continue in this way."

"We have no aircraft and artillery, but we have justice," he said. “No one will feel security in the entire world, until the Palestinian people will feel it.”

Abbas’s sharp attack comes as efforts continue to secure a ceasefire in Gaza. On Monday, Abbas met with Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal in Qatar, and the two issued a joint appeal for an end to "Israeli aggression" in Gaza

Hamas categorically rejected attempts for a ceasefire in multiple statements, insisting that the terms of the agreement 'did not apply' to them.

Later, Hamas officials reportedly set a series of unprecedented demands on Israel to accompany a ten-year truce - before threatening Israelis if the government refused to accept.

Last week, Abbas encouraged Hamas to accept internationally-brokered ceasefire efforts - if not in the name of Palestinian Arab unity, then at least specifically to hurt Israel

"Israel accepted the ceasefire proposal. We (the Palestinians) must also accept it so that we can put the Israeli side at unease," Abbas told a news conference with Turkish President Abdullah Gul in Istanbul in comments translated from Arabic into Turkish.