The Palestinian Authority’s aging president, Mahmoud Abbas, praised Jenin’s terror-infested refugee camp during a rare visit on Wednesday to an increasingly lawless city where Ramallah’s influence is limited and waning. It was the PA leader’s first visit to the Jenin area in more than a decade.
“We planted these olives, and we are taking care of them. If they (Israel) uproot one tree, we will plant 1,000 instead of it. This is Palestine, and this is the Palestinian people,” stated Abbas.
At least 10 terrorists and one IDF soldier died during the intense battle in the Jenin camp earlier this month. Palestinian terrorism in the West Bank, a dangerous development, is fueled by financial backing from Iran. Since the Palestinian Authority is incapable or unwilling to restore order in Jenin, Israel sent its own troops to confront the growing terror threat emanating from Jenin.
Instead of dealing with the harsh reality on the ground, which threatens his own rule, Abbas praised Jenin as “a heroic icon of struggle, steadfastness and defiance.”
In addition, the PA chief described Jerusalem as “the eternal capital of Palestine,” even though the city has historically only been the capital of the Jewish nation.
“We will build an independent Palestinian state, and, I repeat, its capital will be Jerusalem, not Abu Dis,” vowed Abbas with a reference to the Jerusalem suburb previously offered as a potential capital of a future Arab state, next to the Jewish state.
While Abbas condemns Israel’s “aggression,” he also criticized his rival Hamas by promising to “cut the hand of those who tamper with the unity and security of the Palestinian people.”
The Islamist terrorist organization Hamas, which rules the Gaza Strip with an iron fist, has systematically tried to undermine the PA’s influence in the West Bank.