US Permanent Representative to the United Nations Nikki Haley launched an unprecedented attack against Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, accusing him before a Security Council session of insulting US President Donald Trump and lacking the courage to forge a peace deal with Israel.
In remarks on Thursday during a Security Council open debate on the Middle East, Haley said the US “remains deeply committed to helping the Israelis and the Palestinians reach a historic peace agreement that brings a better future to both peoples. But we will not chase after a Palestinian leadership that lacks what is needed to achieve peace.”
She went on to say: “To get historic results, we need courageous leaders. History has provided such leaders in the past. For the sake of the Palestinian and Israeli people, we pray it does so again.”
“I ask here today, where is the Palestinian King Hussein? Where is the Palestinian Anwar Sadat? If President Abbas demonstrates he can be that type of leader, we would welcome it. His recent actions demonstrate the total opposite,” the US ambassador to the UN stated.
Haley harshly criticized a speech delivered by Abbas before the PLO Central Council earlier this month, accusing him of insulting Trump by announcing that the US was no longer a fair and appropriate broker for the peace process.
“In his speech, President Abbas declared the landmark Oslo Peace Accords dead. He rejected any American role in peace talks. He insulted the American President. He called for suspending recognition of Israel. He invoked an ugly and fictional past, reaching back to the 17th century to paint Israel as a colonialist project engineered by European powers,” she said.
In response to Haley’s remarks, Permanent Observer of Palestine to the UN Riyad Mansour said that Abbas “worked throughout his life” in pursuit of peace.
“They are again attempting to distract the international community and evade responsibility for the political deadlock and deplorable situation on the ground by making such false, shameful claims,” he stated.
He stressed that the Palestinian rejection of the US decision on Jerusalem “is not meant to insult Trump,” but rather “a position emanating from the full respect for the law and for the foundations of justice and equality.”
Permanent Representative of Kuwait to the UN Mansour Al-Otaibi reiterated Kuwait’s solidarity with the brotherly Palestinian people in defending their just cause and legitimate rights, stressing that East Jerusalem was the capital of Palestine.
Saudi Envoy to the UN Abdullah al-Muallami emphasized that Jerusalem was the “historical and eternal capital of Palestine”, adding that international resolutions could not be changed with unilateral decisions.