Palestinian television on Saturday aired a video of Palestinians carrying out a mock-execution of US President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence.
Effigies of the US leaders were hanged and then burned in a street in the Aida refugee camp north of Bethlehem.
Palestinians froze their ties with Washington following Trump’s December 6 recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. The US has reacted to the boycott by freezing payments worth $100 million to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) earlier this month, and the White House and Congress are threatening to further cut aid to the Palestinians.
Wattan TV said the action was intended as a “rejection” by protesters of US cuts to UNRWA. Wattan is an independent TV station based in Ramallah.
Before the “execution” protesters held up Palestinian flags and various placards, including one with pictures of Trump, Pence and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, all with ‘X’ marks on them. Above them was written: “Zionism = Nazism = fascism. USA = ISIS = terror.”
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A poll released last week showed support for armed struggle has almost doubled among Palestinians in the last six months: Only 26 percent of Palestinians said they supported a peace deal, a staggering decline from 45% last June. Thirty-eight percent supported armed struggle, up from just 21% in the previous survey.
The same poll, by the Tami Steinmetz Center for Peace Research at Tel Aviv University and the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research in Ramallah, found that Israeli backing for a decisive military offensive to end the conflict increased during the same period by almost 60 percent.
The rise in militancy was believed to be tied to Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital on December 6.
The declaration saw a spike in violent protests in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. There has also been a surge in rocket attacks from Gaza, and Hamas, the terror group which rules Gaza and seeks to destroy Israel, has called for a new intifada to liberate Jerusalem and urged Palestinians to confront soldiers and settlers.
The Central Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PCC) — the second-highest decision-making body for Palestinians — recently voted to officially declare the US no longer fit to be the sole sponsor of peace talks.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas told Meretz party leader Zehava Galon Friday that “the Oslo Accords are dead,” Channel 10 news reported.