Abu Mazen’s Demand That Israel Free Imprisoned Terrorists Shows He’s Not Serious About Fighting Terrorism
May 2, 2003

Mazen: “This Government
is Arafat’s Government”

NEW YORK- The statement by Palestinian Authority prime minister Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen) demanding that Israel release all imprisoned Arab terrorists shows that he is not serious about fighting terrorism, the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) points out.

In a telegram to President Bush, ZOA national president Morton A. Klein, chairman of the board Dr. Alan Mazurek, and National Executive Committee chairman Dr. Michael Goldblatt wrote:

“In his very first speech as prime minister of the PA, on April 28, 2003, Abu Mazen demanded that Israel release all terrorists. Yet according to your June 2002 speech and your “Road Map” plan, the PA is supposed to be putting terrorists in jail, not trying to get them out of jail.

“It is also troubling to note that in his first speech, Mazen turned to PA chairman Yasir Arafat and said, ‘This government, Mr. President, is your government.’ Clearly this conflicts with the claims that Arafat is no longer in power and that Mazen is independent of Arafat. Perhaps this is no surprise, since Mazen has been Arafat’s top deputy for nearly 40 years.

“President Bush, you have said repeatedly that the PA leadership must actively combat terrorist groups. We therefore would have thought that upon taking office, Mazen would have immediately taken steps to outlaw and disarm terrorist groups, shut down their training camps, and extradite terrorists to Israel (as the Oslo accords require). Yet he has not done so.

“President Bush, you pledged to end terrorist states, and you put an end to the Iraqi terrorist state. Yet your Road Map will lead to the creation of a new terrorist state: Since the PA shelters, glorifies, and sponsors terrorists; and since it actively promotes of culture of anti-Jewish and anti-American hatred and violence (in its media, schools, summer camps, religious sermons, and speeches), a Palestinian Arab state will inevitably be a terrorist state. No wonder a recent McLaughlin poll found that by a margin of 71% to 13%, Americans oppose creating a Palestinian Arab state because they believe such a state would seek to destroy Israel.

“Mr. President, the Road Map is a recipe for war, not peace. It will reduce Israel virtually to the indefensible 1967 borders that will leave Israel just nine miles wide. This will encourage the Arabs to believe that Israel can be destroyed, just as the territorial concessions Israel made during the past ten years convinced the Arabs that Israel is weak and demoralized, encouraging the PA to launch the terrorist war that began in October 2000 and continues to this day.

“In view of Abu Mazen’s refusal to serious fight the terrorists, we urge you to refrain from inviting him to the White House.”

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