Abbas tells UN there can be no Mideast peace without his people enjoying full rights

The PA leader’s hostile speech largely resembled those he has delivered in the past.

By Associated Press and World Israel News Staff

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas told the U.N. General Assembly on Thursday that there can be no peace in the Middle East without his people enjoying their “full and legitimate national rights.”

It was the closest he came in a nearly 25-minute address to acknowledging U.S.-led negotiations aimed at getting Saudi Arabia to normalize relations with Israel. The Saudis have said such a deal must include major progress toward the creation of a Palestinian state.

“Those who think that peace can prevail in the Middle East without the Palestinian people enjoying their full and legitimate national rights are mistaken,” Abbas said at the start of his address to the U.N.

The 87-year-old Palestinian leader’s speech largely resembled those he has delivered in past sessions. He accused Israel of a litany of violations against Palestinian rights and called for an international conference to revive the peace process.

He said the Israeli occupation of lands the Palestinians want for a future state “challenges more than a thousand resolutions, violates the principles of international law and international legitimacy, while racing to change the historical, geographical and demographic reality on the ground.”

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The Israeli delegation walked out of the hall early in his address, when he spoke about Israel’s practice of holding the remains of alleged Palestinian attackers.

Abbas made continuous accusations against the Jewish state, saying it was trampling on the rights of the Palestinians and bemoaning the “Nakba,” while ignoring the thousands of Palestinian terror attacks against Israelis. In fact, 2023 has been noted as the deadliest since the Second Intifada.

“We will continue our peaceful popular resistance,” he stated.

Israel’s UN Ambassador Gilad Erdan said, in response to the PA leader’s address, “Mere weeks ago, President Abbas defended Hitler and blamed the Jews for being massacred during the Holocaust. Today, he stood at this podium and called the vicious Palestinian terror attacks ‘peaceful resistance.’ Let me be clear: terror is terror is terror. President Abbas just proved today that he is no partner for peace and that he is totally detached from reality and irrelevant.”

There have been no serious or substantive peace talks in over a decade. Abbas is deeply unpopular among Palestinians, many of whom view his Palestinian Authority as a corrupt pillar of the status quo.