Fatah: All Money in World Won’t Make Us Surrender Jerusalem

Jan, 4 \NewNewss

Azzam Al-Ahmed, member of Fatah Central Committee, said on Wednesday that the Palestinian side is “fighting an open political battle with the US and will not accept, under any condition, the US as a partner in a peace process before it reverses its Jerusalem decision”, WAFA reported.

He added during a meeting with a visiting group of students from Princeton University in the US that Trump had threatened to cut aid money to the Palestinian National Authority and the Palestinian response came as “all the money of the world will not make us surrender”.

Ahmed underlined that “The US President has gone against international resolutions that recognize the two-state solution, by declaring Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.”

He explained that the US administration approved the Road Map plan in 2003 and contributed to its formulation, saying “It was approved by the United Nations Security Council in its resolution 1515, but Trump, through his recent announcement on Jerusalem, revealed that the US administration was abandoning it and thus abandoning the two-state solution.”

He reiterated that the Palestinian leadership will not give up Jerusalem, nor will it give up supporting Palestinian families and those wounded while resisting the Israeli occupation, and will not accept any interference in its decisions.

Ahmed added that “The central council, which will convene on the 14th of this month in Ramallah, will discuss the possibility of declaring the territories occupied in 1967, as the occupied State of Palestine, on the basis of UN General Assembly Resolution 194 of 29 November 2012.”

“Therefore, Palestine shall be a state under occupation, and the international community is required to intervene to end the Israeli occupation similar to intervening in other similar situations,” he underscored.

Ahmad said Fatah and President Mahmoud Abbas are determined to achieve it, despite the obstacles that stand in the way of empowering the national reconciliation government.

“Reconciliation is progressing step by step, and when we complete the empowerment of the government in the Gaza Strip we will start working on other files. We will not move to the second step as long as the first remains uncompleted,” he added.

The Hamas movement’s Spokesman Fawzi Barhoum also said Wednesday that the threats made by US President to cease assistance to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) are just “cheap political extortion”.

“The threats made by the US President to stop providing assistance to UNRWA and the Palestinian authorities until the Palestinians return to negotiations with the Israeli side are a cheap political extortion that reflects the US’ barbarous and immoral behavior toward justice and the rights of the Palestinian people,” Barhoum added in a statement.

He stressed that the actions of the US President required of the Palestinians “unity and strengthening positions against such pressure,” as well as “unification of a large number of Arab, Islamic and international positions to support Palestinians’ rights.”

The statement was made after Trump wrote on Twitter on Tuesday that Palestine was “no longer willing to talk peace” with Israel, and questioned the issue of giving “hundreds of millions” in aid payments to Palestine to force the warring parties to resume negotiations.

The Palestinian side has responded to the stance by saying that Jerusalem was “not for sale” and calling the disputed city the “eternal capital of the state of Palestine.”

According to them, the United States can no longer be a mediator in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, explaining that they are ready to start talks on the basis of “international laws and resolutions that have recognized an independent Palestinian state with east Jerusalem as its capital.”

US President announced early December 2017 that Washington would be recognizing Jerusalem al-Quds as Israel’s capital, stressing that the United States would relocate the embassy in the occupied lands from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem al-Quds.

The move was hailed by Israel but condemned by the rest of the international community as one which undermines the peace talks.

Washington’s al-Quds move has raised a chorus of outcry across the international community. The Muslim world, the UN, world leaders from Europe to the Middle East to Australia, and even US allies in the West have criticized the bid, saying it would plunge the already tumultuous region into new upheaval.

Heavy clashes also broke out between Israeli troops and Palestinian protesters after Washington’s decision in Jerusalem al-Qud’s Old City, Hebron (al-Khalil), Bethlehem and Nablus in the West Bank as well as the besieged Gaza Strip.

People in different countries have also hit the streets to denounce Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem al-Quds as Israel’s capital.

The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), in a statement issued following an extraordinary summit in Turkey’s Istanbul, declared East Jerusalem the capital of Palestine “under occupation” and urged the US to withdraw from the peace process and back down from its Jerusalem decision.

The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) overwhelmingly passed a non-binding resolution condemning US President’s decision and called on states not to move their diplomatic missions to the sacred city. The UNGA vote followed the US veto of a UN Security Council (UNSC) resolution.

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