Abu Mazen Again Encourages Violence Against Israelis
June 11, 2003

NEW YORK- Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen) has again encouraged Palestinian Arabs to murder Jews.

The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) points out that in his first press conference, broadcast on the Arabic-language Doha Al-Jazirah Satellite Channel Television on June 3, 2003 (Text courtesy of the U.S. government’s FBIS, distributed by IMRA), Mazen was asked about his previous statements suggesting a temporary halt to some types of terrorist attacks. He replied: “We called for ending the militarization of the intifadah. Nobody can prevent people from expressing the popular stand through peaceful means, as was the case in the first intifada.”

Some examples of Abu Mazen’s “peaceful intifada”:

* Thousands of firebomb attacks, stabbings, and stonings—including the mass stoning of Jews at the Western Wall, injuring more than 40 (Oct. 1990), and the stoning attacks that killed Benny Meisner (Feb. 1989), Haim Sharabani (Sept.1989), and a 4 year-old Arab boy who was killed when the attackers mistook his family’s car for an Israeli car (Nov. 1990).

* Steering a bus into a ravine off the Jerusalem-Tel Aviv highway, murdering 16 people (including an American woman, attorney Rita Levine of Philadelphia).[July 1989]

* Hijacking a Beersheba bus and murdering 3 passengers. [March 1988]

* A grenade attack on the Haifa mall, wounding 25 people. [August 1988]

By hearkening back to the “first intifada” and urging Arabs to repeat the actions of those days, Abu Mazen is again encouraging violence against Jews.

The ZOA notes that Abu Mazen has not yet taken any steps to fulfill the requirements of the Bush administration’s Road Map, which stipulates that the Palestinian Authority must “arrest, disrupt and restrain individuals and groups conducting and planning violent attacks on Israelis anywhere”; “commence confiscation of illegal weapons”; undertake the “dismantlement of terrorist capabilities and infrastructure”; issue a statement calling on Palestinian Arabs “to end armed activity and all acts of violence against Israelis anywhere”; and “all official Palestinian institutions end incitement against Israel.”

Other highlights of Abu Mazen’s remarks:

* Refuses to Fight Terrorists: Abu Mazen said he would deal with Hamas through “dialogue.” Asked by a reporter “What is the alternative to dialogue?” —i.e., what will he do if the dialogue fails to persuade Hamas to changes its policies— Abu Mazen replied: “The alternative to dialogue is dialogue. Dialogue and contacts should continue. Our people want this. We are not ready and we refuse to wage a confrontation with our people.” Speaking about the Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorists with the utmost sympathy and understanding, Abu Mazen added: “I do not want to place on our brothers in the factions more burdens than they can take.”

* Demands Freedom for Imprisoned Terrorists: “The issue of prisoners has been, and still is, our chief concern. It tops our priorities. It is also in our minds and hearts. We will do our utmost to end this issue and secure the release of prisoners. But certainly, this needs negotiations and political work. Leaving the issue of prisoners for the coming generations is also unacceptable. I hope that we would think carefully about this. Therefore, we have no other way except hard and serious efforts to secure their freedom and their return to their families and homeland in the foreseeable future. There are no less than 10,000 prisoners. Those people need all our efforts so that the prisons will be empty of our brothers and people. No one can claim to be more concerned about this issue because this issue is at the top of our priorities.”

Abu Mazen then warmly introduced and praised Amhad Jibarah, the Palestinian Arab mass-murderer who was released from an Israeli prison last week despite having murdered 15 people, including an American woman. Mazen called him “brother” and asked him to “say a few words about the prisoners.” Jibarah then proceeded to explain that none of the prisoners are terrorists because “we never killed anybody outside of Palestine.”

* Praises Arafat: “We will continue our political efforts to end the abnormal situation imposed on our elected President Yasir Arafat, who won a Nobel Prize. President Yasir Arafat will remain with us and will remain at the head of the PA to pursue our struggle and establish an independent Palestinian state, with holy Jerusalem as its capital.”

* Every Jew Beyond the 1967 Borders is Illegal: “The fate of settlement activity will be decided in the final stage. They speak about legal and illegal settlements. Our position is clear: There are no legal settlements in our 1967 land.” That means that every Jew in Judea, Samaria, Gaza, and many neighborhoods of Jerusalem is defined as an “illegal settler” and thus a legitimate target for Arab violence. A Jew praying at the Western Wall or attending classes at the Hebrew University’s Mount Scopus Campus is automatically defined as an “illegal settler.”

Abbas told the Arab newspaper Alsharq Al-Awsat on March 3, 2003: “It is our right to resist. The Intifada must continue and it is the right of the Palestinian People to resist and use all possible means…” The interviewer then asked: “Including using arms?” Abbas replied: “All means and arms … The restriction applies only to ‘Shahada -Seeking’ [suicide] operations and going out to attack in Tel Aviv or Jerusalem. There is no justification to go out [of the territories] to fight the army.”

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