By Ruthie Blum, Algemeiner—
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas speaks in “two languages” when articulating his policies on Israel, a Jerusalem-based research institute reported on Wednesday.
According to the Palestinian Media Watch report, when Abbas addresses Palestinians – and through his PA-controlled media — he consistently refers to the entire state of Israel as “occupied” territory. When talking to foreign audiences, however, PMW said, “Abbas implies acceptance of Israel’s legitimacy, pledging that he is in favor of the two-state solution, with Israelis and Palestinians living side by side in peace.”
The most recent example cited by PMW to illustrate what it regularly documents, is this month’s cover of the PA-funded youth magazine, Zayzafuna, showing a cartoon of a boy — wearing a sweatshirt with the word “Palestinian” on it – surrounded by several colorful images, among them the PA map of “Palestine” covering the entire state of Israel, a slingshot, a stone and a key symbolizing the “return of Palestinian refugees.” (The magazine’s March cover, a photo of which is provided by PMW, as well, shows a map of the entire state of Israel as “Palestine.”)
On Sunday, meanwhile, according to PMW, a report in the PA official daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, quoted Abbas speaking to a group of Israeli Druze as saying: “We must hurry building peace here, and find the ideal solution, which is simple — the Palestinians and the Israelis will live in two states that will exist side by side in peace and stability, because we want our children and grandchildren to live a good, normal, and prosperous life.”
In the same publication at the end of last month, Abbas was quoted as telling a delegation of Jews: “We strive for peace through the establishment of the Palestinian state, which will live in peace and stability alongside Israel…We are experiencing difficult days, and despite all that is happening, we still hold our hand out to you, in order to establish peace and put an end to the loathing and of blood between us. Therefore, we are trying to hold dialogue with all groups of the Israeli society.”
According to PMW, the latter contradicts what Abbas said earlier in March on official PA TV: “We have been under occupation for 67 or 68 years (i.e., since Israel’s establishment in 1948). Others would have sunk into despair and frustration. However, we are determined to reach our goal because our people stands behind us.”
Watch the interview below: