PA President Abbas Misses Opportunity to Make Key Statement

Posted on September 21, 2010 In Press Releases

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Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas may be engaged in direct negotiations with Israel over the creation of a Palestinian state, but his views on the historical Jewish connection to Jerusalem and the Temple Mount continue to fall regrettably short.

At a dinner with American Jewish leaders earlier this evening, OU President Stephen J. Savitsky pointedly asked Mr. Abbas if he would recognize the special historical ties that Jews have with Jerusalem and the Temple Mount. Unfortunately, President Abbas chose to dismiss the question and miss an opportunity to engender good will with the Jewish community on one of the most pressing of final status issues: Jerusalem.

“President Abbas missed an opportunity this evening to make a key statement that would have created goodwill in the Jewish community,” Savitsky said.

“The fact and importance of Jerusalem and the Temple Mount to the Jewish People is paramount in Israel and the Jewish community at large, and our historic ties must be acknowledged – irrespective of whatever final arrangement President Abbas seeks to secure in negotiations.”

Ed. Note: The dinner meeting was hosted by the S. Daniel Abraham Center for Middle East Peace.