Palestinian Authority says it holds Israel ‘fully responsible’ for escalation

Emanuel (Mannie) Fabian is The Times of Israel's military correspondent

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, center, attends a Christmas midnight Mass in the Church of the Nativity in the West Bank town of Bethlehem, December 25, 2022. (Ahmad Gharabli/Pool Photo via AP)
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, center, attends a Christmas midnight Mass in the Church of the Nativity in the West Bank town of Bethlehem, December 25, 2022. (Ahmad Gharabli/Pool Photo via AP)

The Palestinian Authority says it holds Israel “fully responsible for the dangerous escalation” in violence, after two terror shooting attacks in Jerusalem and a deadly Israeli military raid in the West Bank earlier this week

“The Palestinian leadership holds the Israeli occupation government fully responsible for the dangerous escalation that the situation has reached due to its crimes, which amounted to 31 martyrs during the current month,” the PA’s Security Council says in a statement carried by the official WAFA news agency.

On Friday night, a Palestinian gunman from East Jerusalem killed seven and injured three more in the Neve Yaakov neighborhood. On Saturday morning, a 13-year-old Palestinian shot and wounded two Israeli men near the Old City.

Tensions have increased dramatically since Thursday morning, when an Israel Defense Forces raid in the West Bank city of Jenin against a terrorist cell left nine Palestinians dead — most of them gunmen and members of the cell, though at least one civilian was also killed. The IDF said Thursday’s operation in the Jenin refugee camp was necessary to foil imminent attack plans by a local Islamic Jihad terror cell. The group had primed explosives and firearms, according to the IDF.

The IDF says the majority of the Palestinians killed this month were carrying out attacks or were killed during clashes with security forces. Some were uninvolved civilians.

PA President Mahmoud Abbas met with senior officials today to discuss the developments.

The PA says it warns Israel over the “continuation of its colonial settlement practices, land annexation, house demolitions, arrests, policies of ethnic cleansing and apartheid, and the desecration of Islamic, Christian holy sites, and storming of Al-Aqsa Mosque,” saying it will “lead to further deterioration, threatening security and stability in the entire region.”

“The Palestinian leadership salutes our Palestinian people in all places of their presence for their steadfastness, peaceful popular resistance, and their adherence to their legitimate national rights and to the Palestine Liberation Organization as the sole legitimate representative of our Palestinian people, the leader of our struggle for freedom and independence,” the statement adds.

After the Jenin raid, the PA said it was cutting security ties with Israel.

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