‘Martyrs on their way to Heaven’ – Abbas consoles terrorists’ families

“May God bless all martyrs,” Abbas tells families of men who carried out repeated shooting attacks on Israelis and IDF troops.

By Lauren Marcus, World Israel News

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas phoned the families of terrorists who were killed during a firefight with IDF troops in Shechem (Nablus) on Sunday, praising the men’s actions and calling them heroes.

“We are all mourning,” Abbas is heard telling the fathers of the two slain men, in a video circulating on social media. “That is our destiny and we can’t escape it. We must make sacrifices for the homeland.”

“Your son will reach heaven together with the other martyrs,” Abbas said during the condolence call, speaking to one of the men’s fathers. “May God bless all martyrs.”

While Abbas remained in his Ramallah compound and spoke to the men over the phone, he sent Hussein Al-Sheikh, prominent PA official rumored to have been handpicked by Abbas as his successor, to visit the families in person.

Abood Sobah and Muhammad al-Azizi, the two men killed in the shootout with the IDF, were “terrorists who recently carried out a string of shooting attacks,” Prime Minister Yair Lapid said in a press statement.

Notably, Abbas’ praise for the terrorists comes on the heels of recent meetings with U.S. President Joe Biden and French President Emmanuel Macron, both of whom have publicly pressured Israel to resume peace talks with the PA.

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Embattled octogenarian Abbas is wildly unpopular with his constituents. Opinion polls have found that the majority of Palestinians would like him to resign as well as expressing a preference to be ruled by the Hamas terror group.

Originally elected to a four-year term in 2006, Abbas cancelled long-delayed Palestinian elections in 2016, with no sign of a rescheduled polling day on the horizon.

Arab affairs analyst Khaled Abu Toameh recently wrote in The Jerusalem Post that Abbas has largely surrendered control in a number of PA-controlled cities in Judea and Samaria, in a bid to remain in power.

Abbas is acutely aware that PA’s oppressive crackdown on its critics and collaboration with the Israeli security forces have provided poor optics for the current administration, so he has allowed various terror groups to carry out attacks against Israelis and the IDF.

Intervening to stop the violence would further tarnish the PA’s image as being beholden to Israel, and therefore Abbas has essentially granted free rein to numerous armed groups in the PA-run territories.