WEST BANK/ TEHRAN/ANKARA : Palestinian leadership, Hamas, Tehran and Ankara have blasted the Israel-UAE agreement to establish diplomatic ties. In a statement issued by his spokesman, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas denounced the accord. “The Palestinian leadership rejects and denounces the UAE, Israeli and US trilateral, surprising announcement,” said Nabil Abu Rudeineh, a senior adviser to Abbas. Abu Rudeineh, reading from a statement outside Abbas’s headquarters in Ramallah in the occupied West Bank, said the deal was a “betrayal of Jerusalem, Al-Aqsa and the Palestinian cause.”
Hanan Ashrawi, an outspoken member of the Palestinian Liberation Organization’s executive committee who has served in various leadership positions in Palestine, said the UAE’s announcement is the equivalent of being “sold out” by “friends”.Hamas rejected the US-brokered deal establishing formal ties between Israel and the UAE in exchange for Israel dropping its plans to annex land in the occupied West Bank, saying it did not serve the cause of the Palestinians. “This agreement does absolutely not serve the Palestinian cause, it rather serves the Zionist narrative. This agreement encourages the occupation [by Israel] to continue its denial of the rights of our Palestinian people, and even to continue its crimes against our people,” Hamas spokesman Hazem Qassem said in a statement.
“What is required is to support the legitimate struggle of our people against the occupation and not to establish agreements with this occupier, and any annexation we will face by a Palestinian confrontation that is supported by the Arabs and internationally, and not by signing normalisation agreements with them [Israel].” Terhan termed the Israel-UAE agreement as a “dangerous” step, and warned that it would only bolster the Palestinian resistance against Israeli occupation. Iran’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs described the deal as a “dangerous step” and “strategic stupidity” by both sides.
The ministry stated that “the oppressed people of Palestine and all free nations of the world will never normalize relations with the occupier and the criminal government of Israel.” The UAE and other countries that will support the deal must “accept responsibility for all of the consequences of this action,” the ministry warned. Turkey’s Foreign Ministry said in a scolding statement that the UAE has betrayed Palestinians in pursuit of selfish interests when it decided to establish diplomatic ties with Israel. Ankara said the Palestinian people were right in strongly rejecting the deal announced by the UAE, Israel and the US, under which the Emirati side would normalize its relationship with Israel.
Through its selfish machinations Abu Dhabi has undermined the Middle East peace talks and betrayed the Palestinians, the statement said. “The history and conscience of the nations in the region will not forget and will never forgive this hypocritical act by the UAE, which betrayed the Palestinian cause for the sake of their narrow interests and is now trying to present it as a selfless step,” the Turkish Foreign Ministry said. The trilateral declaration, which was announced by US President Donald Trump on Thursday, proclaims the establishment of diplomatic ties between Israel and the UAE, making the Emirates the first Gulf state to do so. A number of deals on bilateral cooperation are expected to be signed by the two nations soon. It also states that Israel would “suspend” the proposed annexation of part of occupied Palestinian territories, though Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu dismissed that part, saying there was “no change” in his government’s plans. By signing a deal with Israel, the UAE became the first Gulf State and the third Arab nation after Egypt and Jordan to agree on establishing formal diplomatic ties with Tel Aviv. The deal was praised by Israel and the US. President Donald Trump hailed it as a “huge breakthrough” for both countries. Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, meanwhile, confirmed that he had only agreed to delay the annexation of the West Bank, which still remains “on the table.” He said that his government would “never give up our rights to our land.”