ISRAEL AT WAR - DAY 149

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Abbas says PA to request full UN membership, cites ‘battle raging over Jerusalem’

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas speaks during the Arab League's "Summit for Jerusalem" in Cairo, on February 12, 2023. (Ahmad Hassan/AFP)
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas speaks during the Arab League's "Summit for Jerusalem" in Cairo, on February 12, 2023. (Ahmad Hassan/AFP)

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas says the PA will ask the United Nations this week to grant full membership to the “State of Palestine.”

The comments, which Abbas makes during a meeting a meeting on Jerusalem held at the Arab League’s headquarters in Cairo, come as the US has urged both Israel and the Palestinians to refrain from unilateral moves amid a recent spike in violence that has included a number of deadly terror attacks on Israelis and gun battles between IDF troops and Palestinian gunmen in the West Bank.

Abbas says the Palestinians will urge the UN to call on Israel to halt unilateral actions, specifically citing settlement construction, and to “adhere to the signed agreements and resolutions of international legitimacy,” according to a statement carried by the PA’s official Wafa news agency.

“Supporting Jerusalem and strengthening the steadfastness of those staying there and in its environs is a religious duty and a humanitarian and national imperative,” he is quoted as saying.

He continues: “The battle raging over Jerusalem did not only begin on the day of its occupation in 1967, but several decades prior to that, and even before the Balfour Declaration which was issued by the colonial powers, led by Britain and America.”

Abbas claims the 1917 declaration, in which Britain’s government backed the establishment of a national home for the Jewish people in the Land of Israel, was aimed at “getting rid of the Jews in Europe and establishing the so-called Jewish national home in Palestine, to be an outpost to safeguard the interests of these colonial countries.”

“Just as our people rejected the Balfour Declaration and its results, we also rejected all attempts to liquidate our cause or falsify the facts about it,” he says.

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