The ZOA has condemned Palestinian Authority (PA) chief Mahmoud Abbas for the continuing glorification of Palestinian terrorism within the PA, following the PA official radio stations praise for Palestinians heroically martyred in yesterdays suicide bombing south of Tulkarm, near Shavei Shomron.
The suicide bomber, who was driven in a taxi to the area, blew himself up when Israel Defense Forces (IDF) soldiers inspected the vehicle and ordered him out of the car at which point he detonated his explosive belt, killing a soldier, three Palestinians in the car and himself. The terrorist group, Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) claimed responsibility for the attack. Israeli security officials said that the explosive device was a large one, and could have caused severe damage had the bomber reached his destination inside Israel (Jerusalem Post, December 29).
The PA official radio station, Voice of Palestine (VOP), praised the bomber, declaring, Three citizens were heroically martyred today in an explosive operation that targeted Israeli soldiers at a roadblock south of Tulkarm. The PA radio station did not condemn the attack, repeatedly referred to the suicide bomber as a martyr and also suggested that the attack was a response to Israeli aggression. VOP did not report any condemnation of the attack by the PA leadership, only a comment by PA spokesman Nabil Abu-Rudeina, a top advisor to Abbas, who considered todays attack as something that might be used to justify Israeli aggression. (IMRA, December 29).
ZOA National Chairman of the Board Dr. Michael Goldblatt said, This is simply another example of the PA showing its true face — a terrorist-supporting and praising entity that does not act on its obligations to fight terrorism or end the incitement to violence and glorification of murder that feeds it. It also underscores that Hamas is not the only terrorist problem within the PA. This attack and other recent ones were carried out by PIJ, often in collaboration with Mahmoud Abbas own Fatah party and the PA itself institutionally protects and supports these killers.
It is clear that only maximum pressure from the US has any chance of compelling Abbas and the PA to live up their obligations under signed agreements and the 2003 Roadmap peace plan to fight terrorism and end incitement. We strongly urge the Bush Administration to use its leverage to pressure Mahmoud Abbas and the PA into doing precisely that, failing which all negotiations with and financial aid to the PA should be discontinued.