The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today denounced a speech by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to the U.N. Human Rights Council, saying that instead of using a presentation to the international community as an opportunity to reduce tensions and send a message of reconciliation, he used it to grandstand his “litany of accusations, incitement and half-truths.”
Jonathan A. Greenblatt, ADL CEO, who is currently traveling in Israel on a solidarity mission, issued the following statement:
President Abbas again purposefully missed an opportunity to condemn the ongoing wave of Palestinian violence and urge reconciliation and moderation, and instead, laid out his much-repeated litany of accusations, incitement and half-truths. This is unfortunately yet another example of the Palestinian strategy of delivering dramatic speeches which distort realities on the ground and further inflame tensions all while avoiding reconciliation and direct negotiations.
During the past week, the U.S. government has worked closely with the Israelis, Palestinians and Jordanians to ease the tensions across Israel and the West Bank through constructive solutions aimed at ending the violence. Israel has agreed to take a number of steps, including the installation of surveillance cameras on the Temple Mount/Noble Sanctuary.
This speech flies in the face of such efforts and raises questions as to President Abbas’ commitment to toning down the rhetoric and ending the violence.
In order for the tensions to subside, a sincere public commitment is needed from both sides. As long as Palestinian leaders continue refusing to denounce the violence and insist on distorting realities on the ground, we fear the conflict will persist.