Abbas condemns Israeli violence in W. Bank, Gaza

10:59, April 04, 2010      

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Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Saturday condemned the recent Israeli escalation of violence in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, the Palestinian official news agency Wafa reported.

Abbas was quoted by the official news agency as saying that " such escalation of Israeli violence against the Palestinians is aiming at obstructing the international efforts to push forward the peace process."

Abbas condemnation was made as he chaired a meeting of his Fatah party's central committee in the West Bank city of Ramallah, where he stressed in the meeting on the complete cessation of Jewish settlement.

"Halting all Jewish settlement in the West Bank and east Jerusalem is the real introduction for resuming the peace process in the Middle East," Abbas was quoted by Wafa as saying.

Abbas, who was receiving medical treatment in Amman and attend the 22nd Arab Summit held in the Libyan City of Sirte last week, briefed Fatah committee on the latest political developments.

The peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians stopped in December 2008, after the Palestinians insisted that halting Jewish settlement construction is an unchangeable condition for the resumption of the talks.

The Administration of U.S. President Barack Obama has been exerting intensive efforts to bridge the gaps between the two sides and resume the peace talks. However, the efforts were obstructed after Israel's decision to continue expansion of settlements.

Meanwhile, Islamic Hamas movement, which rules the Gaza Strip on Saturday, slammed the United States' call on Israel and the Palestinians for end of violence and self-restraint.

Ahmed Bahar, deputy speaker of Hamas-dominated parliament and a Gaza-based Hamas leader said in a press statement sent to reporters that Washington's call equals the executioner with the victim.

He warned that the current U.S. attitude "would encourage Israel and gives it the green light to target Hamas movement and keep striking on the Gaza Strip."



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