The Palestinians were “deeply pained” to see an Israeli aircraft land in the UAE
, Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh said.
The aircraft carried the name of the “colony of Kiryat Gat, which was built on the lands of the village of Faluja, where Gamal Abdel Nasser was besieged,” he said.
Shtayyeh was apparently referring to the military confrontation between the IDF and the Egyptian army during the 1948 War of Independence. Palestinians say Kiryat Gat was built on land that belonged to the villages of Faluja and Iraq al-Manshiya.
The Egyptian army occupied the area in May 1948, but was defeated by the IDF in a counteroffensive. The Egyptian troops included a young officer, Gamal Abdel Nasser, who later became president of Egypt.
The arrival of the Israeli aircraft in the UAE was a “clear and blatant violation of the Arab position regarding the Arab-Israeli conflict,” Shtayyeh said.
The Palestinians “were hoping to see an Emirati aircraft land in the liberated city of Jerusalem,” he said. “But we are living in the difficult Arab era.”
Shtayyeh praised Arab states that have refused to emulate the UAE and normalize relations with Israel.
“On this occasion, we salute the Arab positions rejecting free normalization
with Israel,” he said. “The Arabs foiled the recent trip of US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo despite the pressure exerted on some Arab countries.”
The PA has not received financial aid from Arab countries since the beginning of this year, Shtayyeh said.
“All the American financial aid to us and the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees has stopped,” he said. “In addition, Israel is trying to blackmail us regarding the tax-revenue funds. We will have to take a $350 million loan from the banks to pay half of the salaries to our employees.”
Senior Fatah official Monir al-Jaghoub said the Palestinians were very disappointed with the UAE for signing the normalization agreement with Israel.
“The rulers of the United Arab Emirates have registered their names in the black pages of Arab history,” he said. “Anyone who betrays Palestine and forges an alliance with the occupation will end up in the dustbin of history.”
Samer Anabtawi, a political analyst from Nablus, called on the Emiratis to receive the visiting Israeli delegation with shoes.
“The plane that landed in your country brought down with it all the principles and taboos,” he said.
In Ramallah, the National and Islamic Forces, an alliance of various Palestinian factions, condemned the visit of the Israeli delegation to the UAE, dubbing it a “betrayal of the Palestinian cause.”
Hamas also condemned the visit of the Israeli delegation to the UAE.
“The rulers of Abu Dhabi insist on continuing the sin of normalization by signing a disgraceful agreement with the Zionist entity,” Hamas said in a statement.
Referring to the first El Al flight from Israel to Abu Dhabi, Hamas said the “trip comes in light of the escalation of Zionist crimes targeting the city of Jerusalem and the blessed al-Aqsa Mosque and in light of the strengthening of settlements and the theft of land.”
Hamas, like many other Palestinian factions, denounced the visit of the Israeli delegation as a “stab in the back of the Palestinian people, a betrayal of the people’s resistance and a conspiracy against their struggle.” It called on the Arabs to take practical measures to confront the “conspiracy.”
Iranian-backed Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), the second-largest group in the Gaza Strip after Hamas, strongly condemned the Israeli delegation’s visit to the UAE, saying it “reflects a state of political and moral downfall and a setback in the history of the United Arab Emirates.”
The Israel-UAE accord was a “stab in the back” of the Palestinian people, PIJ said in a statement, adding: “It is shameful for the United Arab Emirates to receive a Zionist delegation while the Gaza Strip and Jerusalem is being devoured by the Jews.”
Other Palestinian factions in the Gaza Strip described the Israeli delegation’s visit to the UAE as a “disgrace,” a “stab in the chest of the Palestinian people” and a “blow for the Arabs and Muslims and their history and the pure blood of their martyrs.”
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