A Trump administration official condemned a Palestinian group for urging violence to protest the upcoming US-led economic peace conference in Bahrain.
US special envoy Jason Greenblatt accused the Fatah organization led by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas of urging a violent uprising in response to the two-day conference, which kicks off in Bahrain Tuesday morning.
“As the US gov’t works to improve Palestinian lives thru an exciting economic vision for the future, Fatah threatens an intifada, attacks & to ‘make the ground burn under the feet of tyrants.’ How sad for those Palestinians who do not support this ugliness,” Greenblatt tweeted Monday.
Greenblatt’s comments were based on a statement from the head of the Shabiba Fatah youth movement warning of violence in response to the rejected peace bid, translated by the Israel-based Palestinian Media Watch, a partisan organization which seeks to expose controversial content in Palestinian media.
“Shabiba… is prepared for every eventuality, and its members who ignited the first Intifada and the Al-Aqsa Intifada are still capable of making the ground burn under the feet of the tyrants,” the quote read, according to PMW.
As the US gov't works to improve Palestinian lives thru an exciting economic vision for the future, Fatah threatens an intifada, attacks & to “make the ground burn under the feet of tyrants.” How sad for those Palestinians who do not support this ugliness. https://t.co/Wsrzh9cf8C
— Jason D. Greenblatt (@jdgreenblatt45) June 24, 2019
The economic conference, to be held Tuesday and Wednesday in the Gulf Arab state of Bahrain, has been billed by the US as a potential opportunity for the Palestinians to access billions in investment in the event of peace with Israel. However, Palestinian leaders rejected the proposal saying that economic development would come after they achieved an independent state.
Israeli security officials have warned of the eventuality of violence in the West Bank and Gaza in response to the conference.
On Monday, hundreds of Palestinians protested against the US economic peace proposal in cities in the West Bank, including Ramallah, Nablus and Hebron.
In a protest near Hebron in the southern West Bank, protesters sat around a coffin with the words “No to the deal of the century” on it, a derogatory phrase for US President Donald Trump’s proposals.
Protesters also burned pictures of Trump and the King of Bahrain.
Protesters in Ramallah, the seat of the Palestinian Authority, carried a giant coffin labeled “Bahrain workshop,” and signs reading “The Deal of the Century is doomed.”
Dozens of youths in the southern city of Halhul set tires ablaze and slung stones at Israeli soldiers, who responded with tear gas and rubber bullets.
Major Palestinian factions say new protests in the West Bank and Gaza will be held on Tuesday, calling the demonstrations a “day of escalation on the ground at the points of friction.”
Agenices contributed to this report