Abbas. Raising funds
Photo: AP

Abbas: Jews spending billions on Jerusalem lands

Palestinian president warns against Jewish takeover of all parts of capital, asks Arabs to donate money. 'We want action and this requires a real effort,' he says. Meanwhile, Arab newspaper reports Hamas thwarted firing of rockets in response to Temple Mount events

On the backdrop of recent riots in the Old City of Jerusalem, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has warned against a Jewish takeover of all parts of the capital.


According to Abbas, the holy city requires much more effort, attention and dedication from the Arabs in order to deal with the Israeli attempt to change the reality in the city.


In an interview aired Tuesday on Yemeni television, the Palestinian president accused Israel of trying to change the reality in Jerusalem and Judaize the city on a daily basis by expanding settlements, on the one hand, and by preventing Palestinians from building in the city and attacking the al-Aqsa Mosque, on the other hand.


Abbas said the Palestinian people were fighting the current situation constantly, but that the greater efforts were needed, particularly in terms of financial support from the Arab world.


"While Israel and the world's Zionism are spending billions in order to buy lands in Jerusalem, the Arab effort in dealing with the situation is poor," he stated.


The Palestinian president called for funds to be raised for the struggle. "We don't want only voices to support us; we want concrete tools on the ground. The protests are a good thing, but the result is that the land continues to be under Israeli control. We want action, and this requires a real effort in order to prevent the Israeli attempt to change the city and prevent the Zionist march towards Jerusalem."


'Don't talk – act'

Abbas added that it is not enough to say that the Palestinians must act. "The Palestinians are acting and getting killed. The second intifada broke out because of (former Prime Minister Ariel) Sharon's visit to Jerusalem and the mosque's desecration, and lasted seven years.


"This is why the Jerusalem issue requires a much greater and practical effort this time. It's not enough to talk about Jerusalem in books. We must also work for it. And the speeches and sermons at the mosques are insufficient as well."


The Palestinian president believes that Palestinian history is filled with uprisings and revolutions, the last one being the al-Aqsa Intifada.


"We presented the Arab world with the three solutions: The war, the no-peace situation and the negotiations situation. We have experienced war, the second situation has brought no benefit, and the negotiations generated the Arab initiative which we want to see implemented. If there is another solution, I am unaware of it."


Meanwhile, the Hamas government in the Gaza Strip is attempting to maintain calm despite the recent events in Jerusalem. London-based Arabic-language al-Sharq al-Awsat newspaper reported that Hamas men had arrested and released two gunmen seeking to fire rockets at Israel.


Sources in the Strip confirmed to Ynet that Hamas was exerting efforts to continue maintaining the truce and that the organization's security officers were boosting their patrols along the border.


One of the sources said that Hamas was focusing its efforts on PR, with the movement's media stations calling for international and Arab action against the Jerusalem events, but that contrary to previous years, Hamas is not firing rockets at Israel.


פרסום ראשון: 10.06.09, 11:44
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