Israeli Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu slammed Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’ speech Wednesday to the UN General Assembly as dishonest and accused him of having no intention of making peace with Israel.
“[Abbas’s] speech is deceitful and encourages incitement and disaster in the Middle East,” Netanyahu said in a statement shortly after Abbas declared to the UN General Assembly that the PA was no longer committed to prior agreements with Israel.
Netanyahu rejected Abbas’s claims that the recent actions of Israeli security forces at Jerusalem’s Temple Mount constituted an attempt to change the delicate status quo of the site, revered by both Jews and Muslims.
In his speech, Abbas had warned that Israel was in danger of turning a political conflict into a religious one. He accused Israeli “occupying forces” and “extremists” of attempting to divide the compound and preventing Muslim worshipers from exercising their religious rights. Israeli policies, Abbas warned, could lead to an “implosion” in the region.
“Unlike the Palestinians, Israel strictly adheres to the status quo on the Temple Mount, and is committed to continuing to do so in accordance with the agreements between Israel and Jordan and the Waqf,” Netanyahu said in his response.
The prime minister urged Abbas to “act responsibly” and accept his offer from earlier in September to resume direct negotiations without preconditions. “The fact that he time and again has not responded is the best proof there is that he has no intention of reaching a peace agreement,” he claimed.
Read more at Times of Israel.