Will Abu Mazen Condemn the Holocaust today?
In the shadow of the continuing political crisis, the Palestinian Authority chairman is expected today to make a precedent-making statement that expresses solidarity with the suffering of the families that had fallen victim to the Nazi genocide. Abu Mazen, who denied the Holocaust in his PHD thesis, will state that the Palestinian people are sens-itive to crimes committed against other peoples.
Will Abu Mazen condemn the Holocaust? Photo Credit: AP
In the background of the failure in peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians, and a few hours before Israel marks the eve of Holocaust Memorial Day, Palestinian Authority Chairman Abu Mazen is expected to make an announcement that will call the Holocaust the most heinous crime against humanity in the modern age while identifying with the suffering of Holocaust victims, the New York Times reported.
Already in 2011, Abu Mazen withdrew some of the things that he wrote and claimed that he does not deny the Holocaust. The statements are expected to be published today by the Palestinian Wafa News Agency that are even more far-reaching and are said to describe the Holocaust as “the reflection of a discriminatory concept and racism, concepts that the Palestinians refuse to agree with and will work against.”
According to the initial draft of his speech that was received by the New York Times, Abu Mazen is expected to state that “the Palestinian people, who suffered from injustice, oppression and were deprived of the right to have freedom and peace, are the first to come out against similar injustices and crimes that have befallen other nations. We call upon the Israeli government to take advantage of this current opportunity to come to a just peace based on the vision of two states.”
The timing of Abu Mazen’s conciliatory statement, the evening of Israel’s Holocaust Memorial Day and two days before the deadline expires for the peace talks, now seems particularly unfortunate, especially in Israeli eyes. A senior level Israeli official who declined to identify himself because the declaration has not been published yet, related to the internal reconciliation between the Palestinian Authority and Hamas. He defined the Gaza-based movement as an anti-semitic terrorist organization. “Many leaders in Hamas deny the Holocaust,” the senior level Israeli official stressed.
“For Abu Mazen, publishing such a declaration after embracing Hamas is a serious problem,” the Israeli official stated. According to him, the Palestinian Authority chairman’s remarks shake himself of responsibility for the Mufti of Jerusalem during WWII, who supported the extermination of the Jews by the Nazis. “Abbas’s announcement would be more honest if they were looking at their past and their attitude towards the destruction of the Jews at that time,” he stated.