Harsh criticism: Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas says Barack Obama led him on, slamming the American president's handling of the peace process in unusually blunt remarks.
Talking to Newsweek, the Palestinian leader said that President Obama was the one to suggest a full Israeli settlement freeze in the West BAnk, but later failed to pressure officials in Jerusalem to maintain the construction moratorium.
"It was Obama who suggested a full settlement freeze,” Abbas was quoted as saying. “I said ok, I accept. We both went up the tree. After that, he came down with a ladder and he removed the ladder and said to me, jump. Three times he did it.”
In other comments referring to faltering peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians, Abbas slammed US Special Envoy George Mitchell's mediation efforts and said he failed to convey Palestinian ideas to Israel.
“Every visit by Mitchell, we talked to him and gave him some ideas. At the end we discovered that he didn’t convey any of these ideas to the Israelis. What does it mean?” Abbas said.
The Palestinian leader also had unkind words for the US Administration's handling of the Egypt crisis and its attitude towards ousted Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak. Abbas told Newsweek Obama's tough approach vis-à-vis Mubarak was "impolite" and unwise.
“From day one, when it started with Mubarak, I had a telephone call with Madame Clinton. I told her, ‘Do you know what are the consequences? Either chaos, or Muslim Brotherhood or both,’?” Obama was quoted as saying. “Now they have both.”