Mahmoud Abbas.

Abbas Denies Intent to Cancel Oslo Accords

(JTA) — Mahmoud Abbas assured Dutch Jews that he neither intends to abandon the Oslo Accords nor insist on the absorption of millions of Palestinians into Israel.

“We never said we were going to cancel the Oslo Accords,” Abbas said Friday during a meeting near The Hague with members of the Center for Information and Documentation on Israel, or CIDI, Dutch Jewry’s main pro-Israel advocacy organ and watchdog on anti-Semitism.

“We are not going to cancel, we will not cancel anything,” he added, as long as “Israel respects its obligations.”

On Sept. 30, at U.N. headquarters in New York, Abbas said: “We cannot continue to be bound by these signed agreements with Israel” because “the status quo cannot continue.”

At the meeting, Abbas also said he and the Palestinian Authority “never asked anyone to boycott Israel,” only products produced in the settlements. Asked about what Ramallah calls the “right of return” of several million Palestinians to what is today Israel proper, he said: “I am not asking for a right of return for six million Palestinians; I want a solution for them.”

CIDI Director Hanna Luden told Abbas of “serious concern about incitement, including by yourself, in saying that Israel wants to build a third temple on the Temple Mount.”

Abbas answered that he was willing to address incitement “both by Israel and by Palestinians” under U.S. brokerage, but that Israel was unwilling to.

Saeb Erekat, a Palestinian negotiator who also attended the meeting, said, “Judaism is for us not a threat; it’s an asset.”

Abbas said Israel has been “violating the status quo” on the Temple Mount “since 2000, when [former prime minister Ariel] Sharon invaded it.” Abbas was referring to Sharon’s visit to the Temple Mount with a group of Likud Knesset members shortly before the outbreak of the second intifada.

Abbas also said that Israel and Hamas were conducting “direct negotiations here in Europe, in a country which I will not name,” as well as indirect talks up until last month , through Tony Blair, a former prime minister of Britain.

In the Netherlands, Abbas is scheduled to meet King Willem-Alexander and speak with International Criminal Court Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda about “grave Israeli escalation in occupied Palestine,” Palestinian officials said.

Author

Your Comments

The Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. All readers can browse the comments, and all Forward subscribers can add to the conversation. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Forward requires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not and will be deleted. Egregious commenters or repeat offenders will be banned from commenting. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and the Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.

Recommend this article

Abbas Denies Intent to Cancel Oslo Accords

Thank you!

This article has been sent!

Close