The Palestinian Authority on Sunday accused Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman of leading a “frenzied campaign of incitement” against PA President Mahmoud Abbas.
Responding to Liberman’s assertion that Abbas was trying to push Israel into a war with the Hamas terrorist group, the PA accused the defense minister of “promoting extremism, racism and terror.”
The PA also lashed out at US Ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, who reportedly wants to punish countries that vote against US policies.
In an interview with Hadashot news on Saturday, Liberman said: “What particularly stands out is the attempt by Abu Mazen (Abbas) to bring about a deterioration in the [security] situation and bring Israel into conflict with Hamas.”
Liberman said that Abbas had decided to use the bombing of the convoy of PA Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah in the Gaza Strip last week as an excuse to cut off all funding to Hamas.
“We see Abu Mazen’s efforts to bring about a conflict,” Liberman said. “He’s trying to cause a deterioration from the moment he stops all the payments, and the humanitarian services like water and health.”
The PA Ministry of Information said Liberman was seeking to avoid “political dues and the national rights of our people.” It referred to Liberman as the “minister of the occupation army.”
Liberman does not “waste any opportunity to air his racism and express his hatred to all that’s Palestinian,” the Palestinian ministry said in a statement.
Fayez Abu Aitah, acting information minister, accused Liberman of “lying and putting on a cheap show.” Liberman, he charged, stands behind “black racist laws, and promotes extremism, racism and terror in a country that claims to be the only democracy in the Middle East.”
In a separate development, the PA Foreign Ministry condemned Nikki Haley for her reported proposal to punish countries that vote against US policies.
According to a Foreign Policy report, a confidential internal memo drafted by Haley’s staff proposes a “sweeping reassessment of US foreign assistance with a view to punishing dozens of poor countries that vote against US policies” at the UN.
“It is the opinion of the US mission to the UN that all US foreign assistance should be reevaluated to ensure that taxpayers dollars are spent to advance US interests, not to fund foreign legacy programs that provide little or no return on investment,” according to the memo, which was reviewed by Foreign Policy.
“This proposal is a dangerous escalation of the assaults by the state of occupation and its allies in the US administration on the legitimate national rights of the Palestinians,” the PA Foreign Ministry charged.
The proposal will have “dangerous repercussions on the political, diplomatic, and humanitarian relations between countries,” it cautioned.
The PA ministry also warned that “unlimited American bias in favor of the occupation and its policies will destroy any chance of achieving peace,” and called on all countries to reject the US policies of “blackmail, sanctions and dictates.”