RAMALLAH (Ma’an) – Recognition of Palestine as a non-member state in the UN General Assembly is a historic accomplishment for the Palestinian people, President Mahmoud Abbas said Saturday.
He called it a major turning point in the struggle against occupation because the Palestinian land has become "a property of a state under occupation," annulling Israel’s claim that it is a contested land.
Abbas’ remarks came as he inaugurated the fifth session of his party Fatah’s consultative council. The session was given the banner of “statehood and international legitimacy”.
The president added, according to the official Palestinian Authority news agency Wafa, that his leadership insisted on going to the UN despite huge international pressure. The main motive was to protect the inalienable Palestinian national rights, and to save the peace process and the two-state from the Israeli plans to thwart them, he said.
“We went to the UN supported with a united Arab position which came via the Arab follow-up committee, and we obtained unprecedented international voting in favor of the mighty Palestinian people, which was a confirmation that this people have the right to self determination and an independent state.”
Abbas reiterated that Israeli settlement activities of all kinds on the Palestinian land are illegal and completely rejected. The newly announced Israeli projects in area E1, added Abbas, “is a red line which we will not allow, and for that end we are having contacts at all levels.”
With regard to reconciliation between Palestinian rivals, Abbas asserted that elections would be the right path to achieve reconciliation. He reminded that Fatah and Hamas had agreed in meetings in Doha and Cairo to carry out elections.
“Thus, Hamas should allow the Central Elections Commission to resume its operations in the Gaza Strip so as to complete preparation for both presidential and legislative elections as well as Palestinian National Council elections.”
In his speech, Abbas also addressed the rumors about confederation between Palestine and Jordan, yet without giving any details. “We are now focusing on achieving complete independence and sovereignty of the Palestinian state on the pre-1967 territory with East Jerusalem as its capital.”