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PA president says Palestinians adhere to Arafat ‘principles’

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in New York, US on 15 January 2018 [Atılgan Özdil/Anadolu Agenc
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in New York, US on 15 January 2018 [Atılgan Özdil/Anadolu Agency]

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said yesterday that the Palestinian people adhere to the principles set out by the late leader, Yasser Arafat.

Speaking at a ceremony held in Ramallah to commemorate the 15th anniversary of Arafat’s death, Abbas said “no one will forget Arafat’s struggle and steadfastness”.

The Palestinian president rejected “any compromise proposals that did not include the establishment of an independent Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital under international resolutions.”

He added that the Palestinian leadership has decided to hold legislative elections followed by presidential polls including in Gaza and Jerusalem.

“The elections protect our existence and our cause, therefore those keen to protect them must agree to the elections.”

READ: Despite the hype, Palestinian elections are unlikely to be held

Hamas has recently agreed to hold the Palestinian general elections in response to a letter sent by Abbas to the Palestinian factions in this regard.

The last presidential elections were held in 2005, while the legislative elections were last held in 2006.

On Monday, the Palestinians commemorated the 15th anniversary of Arafat’s death throughout the West Bank cities and towns.

Arafat died in 2004 at the age of 75 at the Clamart military hospital in Paris following months of Israeli army siege imposed on his headquarters in Ramallah.

The Palestinians accuse Israel of assassinating Arafat, claims Tel Aviv denies.

READ: Palestinian factions shocked at Abbas conditions for elections. 

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