Malaysian PM in Solidarity Visit to Gaza

Jan 24 2013 / 8:48 pm

Malaysia’s prime minister has defied Israel’s blockade of the Gaza Strip to visit the Palestinian enclave, a move that has earned the ire of West Bank leaders, despite Najib’s pledge of solidarity with the Palestinian people.

Najib Razak, along with a group of Malaysian ministers, crossed into Gaza on Tuesday via its land border with Egypt for what he described as a humanitarian visit.

He told a joint news conference in Gaza City with Hamas leader Ismail Haniya that he came “to express my solidarity with the Palestinian people.”

“This is a humanitarian visit to express our deep concerns for what happens to the Palestinian people in Gaza and to express our opposition to the aggression on Gaza,” he added.

But the visit drew criticism from the office of Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian president, who also heads the Fatah movement.

“The Palestinian presidency announces its rejection and condemnation of the Malaysian prime minister’s visit to Gaza,” a statement carried on the official WAFA news agency said.

“It undermines Palestinian representation and reinforces the division and does not serve Palestinian interests,” it continued, saying Abbas’ bureau would ask Kuala Lumpur “for clarification.”

Call for Reconciliation

Najib said his visit was intended “to show solidarity” and called for renewed reconciliation efforts between the Hamas and the rival Fatah party, including attempts to form a consensus government to pave the way for new elections.

“We believe in this unity government and we pray to Allah that the talks will be successful and a united government will become a reality in the near future,” Najib said.

Najib visited a Gaza university and government offices, as well as the family of top Hamas military chief Ahmed Al-Jaabari, whose assassination by Israel in November started an eight-day war in which more than 160 Palestinians and six Israelis died.

Before leaving for Egypt, he laid the first stone at a Malaysian-funded school.

Najib was the second world leader in recent months to defy the five-year blockade and accept an invitation from Hamas, which Western states regard as a terrorist group.

Qatar’s emir, Sheik Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, made a brief visit to Gaza in October and promised $400 million in aid for infrastructure.

On February 9, Moncef Marzouki, Tunisian president, is scheduled to make his first trip to the coastal strip, according to Hamas officials.

The visits have been made possible in part by Egypt’s decision to loosen some of the restrictions on travel through its Rafah border crossing with Gaza, the only entry point to bypass Israel.

(Agencies via Al Jazeera – www.aljazeera.com)

image_pdfimage_print
Posted by on Jan 24 2013 . Filed under News . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 . You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

Leave a Comment

Please insert the correct number.


2 + = 6

The Free Zone | Blog

  • August 1, 2015

    PA Calls for Blacklisting of Israeli Settlers

    The Palestinian Authority has rejected Israel's condemnation of the killing of a Palestinian infant in the West Bank city of Nablus by Jewish settlers as insufficient. The PA is insisting that the illegal settlers must be blacklisted as terrorists, Quds Press reported on Friday. - A group of Jewish settlers threw firebombs and burning material inside a Palestinian house in Nablus on Friday morning, burning an 18-month... More →
  • July 31, 2015

    Hamas: 'Settlers, Soldiers' Legitimate Targets after Infant Killing

    Palestinian political factions strongly condemned an arson attack carried out by settlers which killed a Palestinian infant on Friday, holding the Israeli leadership fully responsible for the brutal attack and calling for revenge. - Hamas said that the killing of 18-month-old Ali Saad Dawabsha in the Nablus village of Duma makes all "Israeli soldiers and settlers legitimate targets for resistance." - A spokesperson for... More →
  • July 31, 2015

    EU Calls on Israel to Halt Settlement Expansion

    In the wake of the Israeli government's announcement that it is going to build more than 800 new housing units in settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories, the EU has called on Israel to halt all such expansion. The Europeans believe that an increase in the size of the illegal settlements, reported Qudsnet, undermines the prospects for an end to the conflict based on a two-state solution. - "The latest... More →
  • July 31, 2015

    Ultra-Orthodox Jew Stabs at Least 6 at Jerusalem Gay Pride Parade

    At least six people were stabbed at an LGBT pride parade in Jerusalem on Thursday, local media reported, citing Israeli police and paramedics. The suspected attacker, an ultra-Orthodox Jew, has been arrested. - Police said that six people have been injured, adding that two of them were in serious condition. - "We were prepared for every scenario, but our perimeter was breached. This is a severe, hard incident, which... More →
  • July 30, 2015

    Israel Moves to Legalize Gitmo-style Force-feeding of Hunger Strikers

    The Israeli parliament has passed a bill that allows the force-feeding of Palestinian prisoners who resort to hunger strikes to protest their administrative detention without charge. The national medical association said the procedure amounts to torture. - The 120-seat Knesset approved the controversial bill, with 46 legislators in favor and 40 against it. Called “Law to prevent harm caused by hunger strikes,” it... More →
Support Palestine Chronicle
Support Palestine Chronicle
"The Palestine Chronicle is a beacon. History, witness, analysis and ways forward are here, written with authority and humanity. Long may it publish." — John Pilger.
Subscribe to Newsletter
Enter your email address to subscribe to our mailing list.
Email:
separator
Chief Complaint
Return: A Palestinian Memoir
Idea of Israel
Disclaimer RSS Feed Contact us Donation Popup
© Copyright 1999-2015 PalestineChronicle.com. All rights reserved
Powered By MediaSeniors