(JTA) – An aide for Mahmoud Abbas, the president of the Palestinian Authority, said that Abbas opposed the slaying of three Israelis by a terrorist near Jerusalem on Tuesday.
Nabil Abu Rudeinah, Abbas’ chief of staff, told the Voice of Palastine radio station on Thursday of Abbas’ disapproval of the killing, when he was asked about the subject during an interview.
Rudeinah said that Abbas’ “longstanding position” is to “condemn all acts of violence, including this one, and all those who perpetrate them.”
Haaretz, the left-leaning Israeli daily, called this statement “an indirect condemnation by Abbas.” The right-leaning Israeli radio station Arutz 7 labeled the condemnation “faint.”
Israeli Prime Minister Benajmin Netanyahu on Tuesday urged Abbas to condemn the attack.
Abbas rarely supports violence against Israelis explicitly. He occasionally issues direct condemnations of attacks, especially when they involve the slaying of civilians. The security forces loyal to Abbas cooperate regularly with Israeli counterparts to foil terrorist attacks.
However, media under Abbas’ control in the West Bank regularly lionizes Palestinian murderers who killed Israelis and disseminates anti-Semitic propaganda and glorification of the murder of Israelis.
“The murderous attack” Tuesday, in which Nimr Mahmoud Ahmed Jamal, 37, shot and killed a Border Police officer and two Israeli security guards near the Israeli settlement of Har Adar, “Is a direct result of systematic incitement by the Palestinian Authority and others,” Netanyahu said. “I expect Abbas to condemn the attack and to not try to justify it.” Jamal, the father of four whose wife recently left him because he beat her, was killed by soldiers during the incident.
Separately, Jason Greenblatt, U.S. President Donald Trump’s envoy for promoting a peace plan between Israel and the Palestinians, visited Thursday three families of the Israelis whom Jamal killed.
“I visited with the loved ones of THREE families whose sons were murdered by a terrorist at Har Adar. Despicable. Please pray for them,” Greenblatt wrote on Twitter Thursday. “It has been a very difficult & sad evening.”