The Palestinian leadership on Saturday rejected Israeli assertions that it was responsible for the well being of three Jewish youth who were abducted by Palestinian terrorists late Thursday night.
“We see [Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas] and the Palestinian Authority as responsible for every attack on Israel emanating from their territory, whether it is from Judaea and Samaria, or from the Gaza Strip,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told reporters Saturday evening.
As such, Netanyahu demanded that “the Palestinian Authority…do whatever necessary to help the hostages get home safely. That is the Palestinian Authority’s responsibility.”
The Israeli leader said arguments that the abduction took place in an area of Judea under Israeli security control are irrelevant.
“The authority which controls the area from which those terrorists came is responsible. That is exactly the situation in this case. The terrorists came from the Palestinian Authority’s area, and the Palestinian Authority is responsible for this,” Netanyahu insisted.
Gen. Adnan Damiri, a spokesman for the Palestinian Authority police, dismissed Netanyahu’s statement, and himself insisted that Israel was to blame for “illegally bringing settlers into the territories of the State of Palestine.”
At the same time, Damiri confirmed that Abbas had ordered Palestinian police to assist Israel in finding the abducted boys. It is believed American pressure had a hand to play in that development.
Still, Abbas was very conspicuously not going out of his way to condemn the abduction and work to bring about a peaceful resolution to the crisis.
As a media commentator on Israel’s Channel 2 News noted, Abbas has for years been publicly preaching a policy of non-violence, but when some of his people perpetrate a clearly unacceptable act of violence, he is oddly silent.