Adnan Abu Al-Hija, the Palestinian Ambassador to India, refused to condemn Hamas’ recent attack on Israel during an exclusive interview with a media agency. Instead, he questioned world leaders for not condemning Israeli militia actions in the West Bank.
When asked if he condemned the Hamas attack, he responded, “No, sure not. Hamas is part of the Palestinian people, and I condemn the occupation. If there is no occupation, there is no Hamas. Israel has its militias, right? What they are doing is similar to what Hamas is doing. The scale of Hamas’ operation may be larger, but no one condemns the daily actions of Israeli settlers, those militias in the West Bank.”
During the interview, Al-Hija claimed that 260 Palestinians were killed in 2023, with more than 5,000 people in Israeli prisons and about 300 people held in administrative detention in Israel. He questioned why world attention was not focused on Israel’s actions.
He noted that any conflict is regrettable, but it is essential to understand why Hamas carried out the attack and questioned the world’s silence on Israeli actions.
Al-Hija accused Israel of killing more than 260 people in Palestine since the beginning of the year, and he criticized the lack of condemnation for Israel’s actions. He pointed out that Israel confiscates land, builds settlements, arrests and kills people daily, and settlers act similarly to the Israeli occupying forces.
He expressed hope for Palestinian independence and emphasized that Israel cannot have both peace and land at the same time. He reiterated the Palestinian desire for peaceful coexistence and referenced the Oslo agreement.
Regarding the ongoing conflict, Al-Hija stated, “I hope there is no war ever. I hope the Palestinians will get their independent state. The Israelis at that time, were destroying these agreements and destroying the two-state solution. They want peace and land at the same time, and they will never get it. Why? Because we have the right, like any other people in the world, to live in peace.”
“We want to live with the Israelis in peace, and because of that, we went into the Oslo agreement. Because of that, we accepted 22 percent of our historical land to establish the independent state of Palestine,” he added.
The conflict between Israel and Hamas escalated on October 7, with Hamas launching a surprise attack on Israel, firing rockets into southern and central parts of the country. According to Israeli reports, more than 700 Israelis have died in the attack, with over 2,000 people injured. The conflict continues to intensify, with ongoing attacks in various regions, including the southern city of Sderot.
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