Hamas authorizes Abbas to negotiate, Turkish FM says
Palestinian youths inspect destruction at a mosque in Gaza City, on July 30, 2014 after it was hit in an overnight Israeli strike. AFP PhotoHamas have authorized the Palestinian National Authority to negotiate on behalf of the group, Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu has said, underlining the presence of a growing relationship between Mahmoud Abbas and Khaled Mashaal.
“Israel rejected a 24-hour cease-fire and only agreed to a 12-hour respite,” Davutoğlu said late July 29 in a televised interview, adding he had participated in a teleconference with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Qatari Foreign Minister Khalid bin Mohammed al-Atiya.
“All religions are sacred. Religious days are sacred, too” the foreign minister said, asking why Israel only declared a 12-hour cease-fire.
“Saturday is Sabbath. Their religious day is sacred, but ours is not? Why don’t they declare a 24-hour cease-fire?” the Davutoğlu asked.
He also criticized the call by the American Jewish Congress for Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to return his 2004 Courage Award.
“Erdoğan had never changed his stance on the Gaza conflict and would not remain silent because of the award,” Davutoğlu said, adding “no award is more important than the lives of our Palestinian brothers. This has become a matter of abuse and it is wrong. It attempts to create a misperception about our prime minister.”