Longtime PA spokesperson and member of the PLO’s executive committee Saeb Erekat ridiculed U.S. State Department Spokeperson Jennifer Psaki in a statement, according to Wafa, the ‘Palestine’ news agency.
Erekat said that Psaki’s criticism of the speech made to the United Nations General Assembly by Palestinian Authority’s acting leader Mahmoud Abbas was “irresponsible, indecent and rejected.”
Psaki’s statement, made on Friday, Sept.26, and reported by an AP correspondent, criticized Abbas’s speech, in which he claimed Israel was guilty of “genocide” during this summer’s Operation Protective Edge, as including “offensive characterizations” which “the United States rejects.”
“This last war against Gaza was a series of absolute war crimes carried out before the eyes and ears of the entire world, moment by moment,” Abbas told the UNGA in New York.
Abbas also asserted that it was senseless for the Palestinian Arabs to enter into negotiations with Israel unless “the agreed objective” is “ending the Israeli occupation and achieving the independence of the State of Palestine with East Jerusalem as its capital on the entire Palestinian Territory occupied in the 1967 war.”
Psaki stated that Abbas’s speech was “provocative and counterproductive” and that it will “undermine efforts to create a positive atmosphere and restore trust between the parties.”
Erekat countered that the statements made by Abbas were welcomed by the entire international community other than Israel and the U.S., and urged the state department to reconsider its positions and to support the draft resolution which will be submitted to the U.N. Security Council.
Another PLO executive committee member, Nabil Shaath, also slammed the state department’s criticism of Abbas as a “comprehensive diplomatic attack.”