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Erekat says occupation behind Mideast chaos

Sept. 14, 2012 4:10 P.M. (Updated: Sept. 15, 2012 4:32 P.M.)
JERICHO (Ma’an) -- PLO negotiator Saeb Erekat met on Thursday with ambassadors from Europe, the US and Japan on the 19th anniversary of the signing of the Oslo Accords.

Erekat said Israel had been occupying Palestine since 1967, "and this is considered an offense to humanity. Israeli authorities have signed many agreements, and never committed to them."

In a statement, he called the occupation a main source of violence and chaos in the Mideast.

In separate meetings with the Japanese, US, British and French envoys to Jerusalem, Erekat called on their countries and the international community to stop letting Israel confiscate land and expand settlements.

Separately, Erekat addressed the growing outrage over an anti-Muslim video clip apparently produced in the United States.

"All abuses and attempts against Islam cannot be justified by freedom of expression. The real names for such abuses and attacks are 'racist,' 'terrorist,' and 'fascist,'" Erekat said.

Earlier he denounced the killing of the US ambassador to Libya who died late Tuesday when a mob stormed a compound in Benghazi.

The envoy, Christopher Stevens, was a close friend of Erekat's family, he said.

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