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.


6 + = 15

The Free Zone | Blog

  • March 2, 2015

    Benjamin Netanyahu's Long History of Crying Wolf About Iran's Nuclear Weapons

    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is expectedtoaddressthe U.S. Congress tomorrow about the perils of striking anuclear deal with Iran. Netanyahu, not generally known for his measured rhetoric, has been vociferous in his public statements about the dangers of such compromise, warning that itwill allow Iran to “rush to the bomb” and that it amounts togiving the country “a license” to develop nuclearweapons. - It isworth remembering, however, that... More →
  • March 2, 2015

    Pro-Israel Group Publicly Breaks With White House Over Iran

    The leadership of the most powerful pro-Israel lobby in the U.S. publicly broke Sunday from the White House over the issue of Iran policy during the first of a three-day policy conference in Washington attended by 16,000 of its members. - Leaders of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, or Aipac, outlined a strategy moving forward of working through Congress to disrupt any nuclear agreement with Tehran that is deemed too weak in denying the country a... More →
  • March 2, 2015

    Satire: Netanyahu Assures Critics He Still Has Utmost Respect For U.S. Money

    In a concerted effort to ease growing tensions between the two nations, Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu assured his critics Monday that he still has the utmost respect for U.S. money. “Relations between our two countries have at times been strained, but I promise you all that the entire Israeli government, myself included, still holds a high opinion of the United States’ cash,” said Netanyahu, emphasizing that his speech to Congress was not intended... More →
  • March 2, 2015

    The Case against Netanyahu's Speech to Congress

    "The person who has caused the greatest strategic damage to Israel on the Iranian issue is the prime minister," argues Meir Dagan, former head of Mossad, Israel's top intelligence agency. Dagan has become one of Netanyahu'smore outspoken critics from withinIsrael's security establishment. The ex-spy chiefis no dove, but in comments Friday, he insisted that Netanyahu was alienating his country's most important ally at exactly the wrong time. - Dagan'sargument was... More →
  • March 2, 2015

    Noam Chomsky: Why Israel's Netanyahu Is So Desperate to Prevent Peace with Iran

    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has arrived in the United States as part of his bid to stop a nuclear deal with Iran during a controversial speech before the U.S. Congress on Tuesday. Dozens of Democrats are threatening to boycott the address, which was arranged by House Speaker John Boehner without consulting the White House. Netanyahu’s visit comes just as Iran and six world powers, including the United States, are set to resume talks in a bid to meet... 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.
Enter your email address to subscribe to our mailing list.
Email:
Chief Complaint
Case for Sanctions against Israel
Idea of Israel
Disclaimer RSS Feed Contact us Donation Popup
© Copyright 1999-2015 PalestineChronicle.com. All rights reserved
Powered By MediaSeniors