Abbas to focus on Jerusalem in speech to UN Security Council

Hamas preparing for 'post-Abbas era': Senior member

Abbas had angrily rejected a leading US role in brokering peace talks after Trump's December 6 recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital, but in his United Nations speech he called for convening a peace conference in mid-2018 with "broad global participation" but one in which the "foremost" conveners were the five permanent members of the Security Council and the members of the Quartet, the four entities guiding Middle Eastern peacemaking.

Hamdan went on to assert that Abbas' Fatah movement, which leads the Ramallah-based Palestinian government, "does not suffer what we suffer in Gaza" - a reference to a decade-long Israeli/Egyptian blockade that has effectively destroyed Gaza's economy. The Palestinians claim east Jerusalem as the capital of a future state, a position backed by most of the worldwide community but Israel considers the entire city, including the eastern sector, to be its undivided capital.

Last month demonstrators disrupted a meeting between US diplomats and the chamber of commerce in the Palestinian city of Bethlehem.

"A new phase has begun in the struggle to preserve the overall goal of our Palestinian people, the Arab nation and the world as a whole, and this is the issue of Al-Quds, with its holy sites to Islam and Christianity, its heritage and history, which some are trying to counterfeit by contradicting all worldwide laws which have always established that Al-Quds is Palestinian and Arab", Abu Rudeina said.

"It has become impossible today for one country or state alone to solve a regional or global conflict", Abbas said.

During a rare UN Security Council address, Abbas instead called for an worldwide conference to be held by mid-2018 to kick-start the stalled peace process with Israel and create a "multilateral mechanism" to oversee it. The Arab states have a crucial role to play, both in incentivizing the Israelis to make sacrifices for peace, and in supporting the Palestinians in concluding a conflict-ending agreement with Israel.

"To solve the Palestine question, it is essential to establish a multilateral global mechanism emanating from an worldwide conference", Abbas said.

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Netanyahu's office issued a statement saying: "Abbas didn't say anything new". There is the path of absolutist demands, hateful rhetoric, and incitement to violence.

However, Abbas did not see Haley's wrath as he left the chamber after he addressed the Security Council. "You are the problem".

"You can choose to denounce the United States, reject the USA role in peace talks and pursue punitive measures against Israel in global forums like the UN", Haley said.

Haley minced no words in responding to the Palestinian leader.

Trump's declaration, which would move the USA embassy to Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, was met with wide protests in Palestine and many parts of the world.

Haley said about the USA recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital: "You don't have to like that decision, you don't have to praise it, you don't even have to accept it, but know this - that decision will not change".

France's U.N. Ambassador Francois Delattre said his government received Abbas' proposal with interest and will study his call for an worldwide conference, but US participation in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process "is indispensable".

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