Saudi stance on Palestine issue hailed by top official

Saudi Arabia’s King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud meets with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia November 7, 2017. Saudi Press Agency/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS – THIS PICTURE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVE.

AMMAN (RAHNUMA): Palestinian officials have begun a wide-ranging campaign to oppose Israeli attempts to annex parts of the occupied Palestinian territories.

Nabil Shaath, political adviser to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, told Arab News: “While the Israeli annexation attempts will put an end to the Oslo process and will be a clear theft of Palestinian lands, there has been strong positions coming out of Arab and European capitals,” he said.

Shaath, a former foreign minister, noted that actions and not words are needed to put a stop to the Netanyahu/Trump alliance: “I call on my friend King Salman, who has always stood with the Palestinian cause, to make known to everyone the simple fact that Palestine is and will continue to be in the heart of every Arab.”

Shaath said that Palestinians will always remember with great pride the historic positions of every Saudi leader.

Shaath spoke about the important unity talks that were triggered by a letter smuggled from jail by Ahmad Saadat, the jailed leader of the left-wing Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.

In his letter, Saadat wrote, “I assure the president and our brothers in Fatah that the atmosphere within the leadership of the Front [PFLP] is ready for a positive dialogue that can overcome financial difficulties, which we see as small in comparison with the national challenges facing our people.”

Usama Qawasmeh, a Fatah spokesman, said that the Saadat’s letter was well received. “We see a positive atmosphere [for unity] and the letter from Ahmad Saadat has had a very big effect and has moved the still waters toward dialogue and unity.”

The letter and the positive reaction from the president and his Fatah movement has, however, failed to convince many skeptics about the chances for true reconciliation.

Suheir Ismael, the general director of Women Media and Development/TAM organization who lives in the Dheisheh refugee camp outside Bethlehem, told Al-Monitor that the PFLP letter will do little to break up the major division between Fatah and Hamas. “There is no political will among those two groups for reconciliation as leaders of both major groups prefer the status quo to any change.”

Dimitri Diliani, a former member of the Fatah revolutionary council, said that what is needed is for Fatah to “resolve internal differences and then work with all the people to put strong pressure on Hamas to end the division that was created as a result of their 2007 coup so that we can regain our true national unity.”



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