White House Responds to Abbas Curses

Abbas Friedman
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas attending a meeting of the Fatah Revolutionary Council in Ramallah, earlier this month. (AP Photo/Majdi Mohammed)

The White House has responded to offensive remarks made by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas targeting ambassador to Israel David Friedman.

“The time has come for President Abbas to choose between hateful rhetoric and concrete and practical efforts to improve the quality of life of his people and lead them to peace and prosperity,” said Jason Greenblatt, the president’s special representative for international negotiations.

“Notwithstanding his highly inappropriate insults against members of the Trump administration, the latest iteration being his insult of my good friend and colleague Ambassador Friedman, we are committed to the Palestinian people and to the changes that must be implemented for peaceful coexistence.”

“We are finalizing our plan for peace,” he added, “and we will advance it when circumstances are right.”

Heather Nauert, acting undersecretary for public diplomacy, called Abbas’ comments “outrageous and unhelpful.”

“We urge the Palestinian Authority to focus its efforts on improving the lives of the Palestinian people and advancing the cause of peace,” Nauert said. “The administration remains fully committed to those goals.”

Abbas on Monday cursed Friedman in an unusually abusive tirade.

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