Kerry Treats Bibi, Abbas as Equally Responsible

US Secretary of State gives same message of condemning violence and need for calm to both Israelis and Palestinians.

Arutz Sheva Staff,

Secretary of State John Kerry
Secretary of State John Kerry

US Secretary of State John Kerry shared his "deep concern" Saturday over the recent wave of terror in Israel, though he made efforts to treat the two sides as equally culpable, AFP reports.

Kerry called Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and PA President Abbas separately "to express his deep concern over the recent wave of violence and offer his support for efforts to restore calm as soon as possible," a State Department statement said.

"He reiterated the importance of strongly condemning violence and combating incitement, and taking affirmative steps to reduce tensions."

Separately, the two leaders each pointed the finger at the other for the escalating violence.

Netanyahu said he told Kerry he expected the Palestinian Authority to stop its "wild and mendacious incitement, which is causing the current wave of terrorism."

And Abbas blamed "settler provocations" for the stabbings in Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, Afula, Kiryat Gat, and numerous other locations.

Kerry "stressed the importance of upholding the status quo in word and deed at the al-Haram al-Sharif/Temple Mount and of preventing inflammatory rhetoric and actions that will increase tensions," the State Department said, referring to the site revered by both Muslims and Jews.

The United States "will remain engaged in efforts to restore calm," it added, noting Kerry was monitoring the situation "closely."