Mahmoud Abbas: Global terror will stop once occupation ends

Mahmoud Abbas: Global terror will stop once occupation ends
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas appealed to the EU on Thursday to help Palestine against Israel's 'provocations' and 'fascist policies', arguing that terrorism would end with the end of occupation.
2 min read
24 June, 2016
Abbas urged European lawmakers to put an end to Israeli provocations [Getty]
Global terror will end once Israel's presence in the West Bank ends, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas told the European Union on Thursday.

In his address to members of the European Parliament, Abbas also affirmed Ramallah's support for a two-state solution as outlined in the current Paris peace plan and the 2002 Arab Peace Initiative.

Abbas urged the lawmakers to put an end to Israeli "provocations", claiming that Rabbis, among others, had joined in on these excesses by asking for water sources to be poisoned.

"We are against terrorism, in whatever form it may take, and whoever carries it out," the Fatah leader told EU parliament members.

"Once the occupation ends, terrorism will disappear, there will be no more terrorism in the Middle East, or anywhere else in the world," he continued.

The leader of the PA also blasted Israel's "fascist policies", and slammed the country for having started three wars and killing thousands of people.

Abbas also condemned Israel for having imprisoned over 1 million Palestinians since 1967.

"Israel has turned our country into an open-air prison," he told EU legislators. "You are our friends, help us."

In addition, Abbas used the opportunity to state his willingness to re-start the Tripartite Committee on Incitement, the watchdog group to monitor violations by both sides – something Israel has persistently rebuffed.

The PA president also called for the EU to join the joint US-Israeli-Palestinian commission.

Paris peace effort
 Foreign ministers met earlier this month in Paris to kick off the recent Middle East peace plan [Getty]

The words of the Palestinian leader greatly contrasted that of his Israeli counterpart Reuven Rivlin, who met the parliament a day earlier and expressed his scepticism of the French peace effort.

Rivline told the legislators that the French initiative was suffering from "very fundamental flaws" and was thus doomed to fail.

He criticised Abbas' "all or nothing" approach and said that such an approach to the two-state solution does not acknowledge the huge mistrust between the two sides.

Abbas and Rivline's visits came after EU foreign ministers backed a French initiative on Monday to call for an international conference on the Middle East to restart Israeli-Palestinian talks.

The two sides have not met directly for negotiations since 2014, when talks stalled over continued Israeli settlement constructions.

While Washington has traditionally played a central role in Middle East peace talks, a recent lack of initiative from the White House has meant that the baton has effectively been passed to European nations.