In lighting the third candle for Hanukkah at his Jerusalem office on Thursday, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu responded to the Palestinian Authority's (PA) unilateral move the day before to submit a UN Security Council resolution calling for Israel to withdraw from Judea, Samaria and eastern Jerusalem by 2017.
Referring to PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas by his kunya name, Netanyahu said "Abu Mazen thinks he can threaten us with unilateral steps. He does not understand that they will result in a Hamas takeover in Judea and Samaria, just as previously occurred in Gaza."
The statement refers to how Hamas expelled the PA in 2007; Hamas already tried to stage a coup against the PA in Judea and Samaria earlier this year which was foiled by the IDF.
"We will not allow this to happen. We will never agree to unilateral diktat. We will always safeguard our security. This is our lesson both from the days of the Maccabees and in our day," said Netanyahu.
Meanwhile the Arab League said Thursday it hopes the unilateral resolution goes through and that the US doesn't block it with a veto. Jordan presented the resolution, which sets a 12-month deadline for "peace" negotiations, and an Israeli withdrawal by the end of 2017.
"We hope that the United States will not use its veto," said the Arab League's deputy secretary general for Palestinian affairs, Mohammed Sobeih, reports AFP.
"The use of the American veto will harm the Palestinian cause and will be used by extremists as an instrument to pursue settlement and ruin the peace process," he said, blaming Jewish construction in the Biblical heartland of Israel as "ruining" the chances of peace and not the PA's intransigence, support of terrorism, and refusal to recognize the Jewish state of Israel's right to exist.
US Secretary of State John Kerry reportedly on Tuesday finally promised to use the veto.
However, on Wednesday, he said "we don't have any problem with them filing some resolution, providing it's done in the spirit of working with people to see how we could proceed forward in a thoughtful way that solves the problem, doesn't make it worse."
The US remained ambivalent according to statements made by a UN Security Council diplomat on Thursday, who said the US opposes unilateral moves as it traditionally has.
"There is not the basis for consensus on the text as drafted and that is why we need to do some work," the diplomat told AFP. "The issue now is how do we get something that really does command consensus. The objective that we have is to achieve consensus, which means we want to have a text that everybody can agree."