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UN Security Council calls for 'immediate and unconditional' ceasefire
Abbas: Israel trying to undermine Palestinian UN move
Published Friday 16/11/2012 (updated) 20/11/2012 00:50
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RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- President Mahmoud Abbas on Friday accused Israel of launching an deadly assault on the Gaza Strip to undermine his efforts to secure a diplomatic upgrade at the United Nations.

Israel started an air offensive on Wednesday with the assassination of a Hamas commander. Medics say 28 Palestinians have been killed, and three Israelis died from rocket fire from Gaza.

"Everything that is happening is in order to block our endeavors to reach the United Nations," Abbas told journalists in Ramallah.

He pledged to continue with his plan for a vote in the UN General Assembly on Palestine joining as a non-member state.

Nothing will deter us from going to the UN, Abbas insisted.

The upgrade would enhance Palestinians' legal rights at a time when peace negotiations with Israel have hit a wall over Israel's refusal to halt settlement building in territory where the Palestinians want their state.

"Israel should realize that without peace, no one will feel safe," Abbas said in his address. The president has offered to return to peace talks with Israel after the UN bid is submitted.

Abbas, whose forces were chased out of Gaza by Hamas in 2007, accused Israel of instigating a "blood bath," and said the attacks were against all Palestinians.

"All of us are Palestinians, and all of us should work to implement national reconciliation. The time is right," he said.

Abbas said he has asked Arab League chief Nabil al-Arabi to visit the enclave on Saturday and Sunday. He called on the regional body to send a delegation of foreign ministers, including the Palestinian Authority minister, to visit Gaza.

Egyptian Prime Minister Hisham Kandil visited Gaza on Friday in a demonstration of solidarity with Gaza. Abbas said he welcome the visit in conversations with the Egyptian president.

Reuters contributed to this report
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1 ) Outlier / USA
16/11/2012 23:30
Misplaced blame. Hamas should be the party accused, for its policy of launching terrorist rockets.

2 ) Fadel / Somewere
16/11/2012 23:31
Mahmoud Abbas is israel's palestinian leader, not the palestinian leader.

3 ) ian / australia
18/11/2012 01:23
' "Everything that is happening is in order to block our endeavors to reach the United Nations," Abbas told journalists in Ramallah.' Abu Mazen is right. I'd call it Reason No. 2 for attacking Gaza (out of five). 1. Gets Bibi solidly re-elected, 2. Disrupts UN upgrade (like Pres. Abbas says), 3. Derails US/Iran breakthrough deal on nuclear program (recently announced, now off.) 4. Shows Obama who's still running things, 5. Generally traumatises, undermines and demoralises Palestinians, to break

4 ) ian / australia
18/11/2012 01:24
(contd.) their spirit and resolve and compel them to either (a) leave or (b) placidly accept whatever Israel decides to impose.

5 ) Paul / USA
22/11/2012 15:35
"Nothing will deter us from going to the UN." Ok,... we hear you Mr Abbas Be sure to look Secretary of State Clinton in the eye and tell her that. I can not help but believe that somewhere in the mix of this cease fire between Hamas and Israel there is a postponment on the Novemeber 29, vote in the UN. I will be pleasantly surprised if there is not. In fact, I think it is already agreed upon, just not annouced because Pals would riot,... and may yet when it is announced. Hope I am wrong.....

6 ) Paul / USA
22/11/2012 21:33
Thank you Maan for posting my comment #5 like I said I hope I am wrong. but I think alot of people were thinking and are thinking much similar to me,.. and I am sure it needed to be said for me and all of them ,... thanks again.
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