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Abbas backtracks from '50 holocausts' remark

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas addresses a statement with German Chancellor Angela Merkel (not seen) before talks at the Chancellery in Berlin, Germany on 29 August, 2019 [Abdülhamid Hoşbaş/Anadolu Agency]
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas addresses a statement with German Chancellor Angela Merkel (not seen) before talks at the Chancellery in Berlin, Germany on 29 August, 2019 [Abdülhamid Hoşbaş/Anadolu Agency]

Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas backtracked from accusing Israel of carrying out "50 holocausts" against Palestinians.

Following uproar by Israel after he told a German journalist that the Israeli occupation has committed "50 massacres" against the Palestinians.

The German journalist asked him whether he is ready to apologise to Israel over Munich attack on the Israeli sport team in 1972, Abbas said: "If we want to dig further into the past, yes, please, I have 50 massacres that were committed by Israel."

While standing beside German Chancellor Olaf Schols, Abbas added: "Fifty massacres, 50 Holocausts, and to this day, every day, we have dead people killed by the Israeli army."

READ: Abbas Holocaust remarks in Berlin create storm of protest

Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid tweeted: "Mahmoud Abbas accusing Israel of having committed '50 Holocausts' while standing on German soil is not only a moral disgrace, but a monstrous lie. History will not forgive him."

Along with Lapid and German Chancellor Olaf Schols, many other Israeli officials slammed Abbas' remarks.

In a statement issued by his office, Abbas reaffirmed that the Holocaust "is the most heinous crime in modern human history."

He added that his answer "was not intended to deny the singularity of the Holocaust that occurred in the last century."

The statement stated: "What is meant by the crimes that President Mahmoud Abbas spoke about are the crimes and massacres committed against the Palestinian people since the Nakba at the hands of the Israeli forces. These crimes have not stopped to this day."

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