ARAFAT "NOT RULING OUT WAR ON ISRAEL" : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread


Arab world condemns violence against Palestinians

By Daniel Sobelman Ha'aretz Correspondent

The Palestinians are keeping the option of war against Israel viable, Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat declared in an interview with the Saudi daily Ukaz. "We're prepared for all possibilities which circumstances might create," Arafat said.

Arafat told the Saudi newspaper that while the PA wants peace, it won't hesitate to engage in warfare to defend itself. "The Palestinian people have many options at their disposal," Arafat said, "and they have survived many sacrifices in their history."

Arafat's defiant tone was supplemented by harsh condemnation of Israel by leaders and commentators in Arab countries. MK Ariel Sharon's visit to the Temple Mount has been singled out in these Arab responses as the provocation which triggered the conflagration.

In Tehran, Khaled Meshal, the head of Hamas' political division, called for armed resistance to Israel. The Jerusalem issue, Meshal said, is a "call to action for all Muslims and Palestinian forces, [as well as to] Hezbollah."

Meshal called for "strikes against Zionist interests around the world," and he said that PA policemen should continue confrontations with IDF soldiers and should shoot at them. Asked whether Hamas will renew terror strikes against Israel, Meshal declared "the Palestinian people have the right to respond with all measures against Zionist aggression."

A Hamas spokesman, Ibrahim Rusha, said that Palestinians have launched "a new jihad [holy war]."

Jordanian Prime Minister Ali Abu al-Ragheb said that violence in Jerusalem and the territories is a direct response to "provocations" perpetrated by opponents of the peace process. Al-Ragheb denounced the "ugly crime which Israeli soldiers carried out" against Muslim worshipers at Al-Aqsa.

Speaking yesterday with Arafat, Jordan's King Abdullah expressed his country's support for the Palestinians and their demands. Arafat will visit Amman today.

Lebanon's Prime Minister Salim Hoss described the recent events as "a new proof of Israeli aggression."

In Cairo, the state-affiliated newspaper Al-Aharam reported that Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak warned Ehud Barak that events of recent days will have "damaging consequences" for the peace process. Meanwhile, members of the Muslim Brotherhood demonstrated in Cairo and Alexandria in protest against the "Al-Aqsa massacre.

-- Carl Jenkins (, October 02, 2000


That's all we addition to the Iraq - Kuwait squabbling, this will make the Middle East a real powder keg.

-- R2D2 (, October 02, 2000.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ