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Abbas opposes boycott of Israel infurating BDS leaders
A Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) protest against Israel. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.
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ALRAY & Agencies - Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said he rejected a boycott of (Israel) on December, 9, infuriating Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) leaders, The Star reported.

“No, we do not support the boycott of Israel,” Abbas told South African reporters.

“But we ask everyone to boycott the products of the settlements. Because the settlements are in our territories. It is illegal,” Abbas added.

“But we ask everyone to boycott the products of the settlements. Because the settlements are in our territories. It is illegal. … But we don’t ask anyone to boycott Israel itself. We have relations with Israel, we have mutual recognition of Israel,” Abbas added.

According to Ali Abunima, a co-founder of Electronic Intifada, a Palestinian US-based platform committed to combating the pro-Israeli, and pro-American spin, "it is unclear what Abbas meant by 'mutual recognition'"

"While Abbas and the Palestine Liberation Organization have recognized Israel, Israel does not recognize a Palestinian state or indeed any Palestinian rights whatsoever and continues to aggressively steal Palestinian land," Abunima said. 

Abbas’s comments conflict “with the Palestinian national consensus that has strongly supported BDS against Israel since 2005,” BDS movement co-founder Omar Barghouti told Electronic Intifada.

Barghouti said Abbas does not speak for the Palestinian people.

“There is no Palestinian political party, trade union, NGO network or mass organization that does not strongly support BDS,” he said.

“Any Palestinian official who lacks a democratic mandate and any real public support, therefore, cannot claim to speak on behalf of the Palestinian people when it comes to deciding our strategies of resistance to Israel’s regime of occupation, colonization and apartheid.” Barghouti stressed. 

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