PA issues weak condemnation of Bethlehem incident

Abbas's bureau condemns attack on American vehicle in Bethlehem but does not promise to find the perpetrators.

Dalit Halevi ,

Mahmoud Abbas
Mahmoud Abbas
Flash 90

Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas's bureau in Ramallah on Tuesday issued a short statement condemning the attack on an American diplomatic vehicle outside the United States consulate in Bethlehem.

The statement said, "The presidency emphasized its absolute opposition to such behavior that deviates from the Palestinian values and roots."

The PA's announcement made no mention of any commitment to arrest and/or prosecute the perpetrators. The PA is fuming at U.S. President Donald Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital and has declared it would "no longer accept" any peace plan proposed by the United States.

Video footage from Tuesday's incident in Bethlehem showed Palestinian Arabs attacking and throwing objects at a car with American consulate personnel.

The incident came after PA activists, led by representatives of Abbas’s Fatah party, on Saturday held a mock trial for Trump and Vice President Mike Pence in Bethlehem.

The public event included the reading of a faux verdict, followed by the execution by hanging of Trump and Pence in effigy.