A comparison of the official Palestinian and official Israeli reports of the Netanyahu-Abbas conversation finds that the sanitized report issued by Israel puts Abbas in a far more favorable light than he deserves.

As the official PLO news agency WAFA notes, Abbas indicated that he considers Israel’s closure of the al-Aqsa mosque to be just as deserving of “strong condemnation” as the “fatal Jerusalem shootout”.

Please note that in the WAFA report, Abbas doesn’t actually even condemn the Arab attackers.  Instead he condemned “the fatal shootout” – leaving open that the Israelis engaged in the shootout somehow also bear responsibility for the incident.

In sharp contrast, the press release issued by the Prime Minister’s Media Adviser makes no mention of what Abbas said about Israel’s closure of the al-Aqsa mosque.

The Israeli press release also leaves the impression that Abbas relates to the incident as a  “terrorist attack” = the attackers are clearly to blame, rather than a “fatal Jerusalem shootout” which leaves open the possibility for Israel, in the eyes of Abbas, to share the blame.

#1  Official PLO New Agency Report
Abbas phones Netanyahu, condemns Jerusalem’s attack, closure of al-Aqsa

RAMALLAH, July 14, 2017 (WAFA) – Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas phoned
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and expressed his strong
condemnation over the fatal Jerusalem shootout and the Israeli closure of
the holy Islamic site of al-Aqsa mosque.

Abbas expressed his strong rejection and condemnation of the fatal shootout
that took place near Al Aqsa mosque, as well as his rejection of any violent
incidents from any side, especially in places of worship.

Abbas called on Netanyahu to end the closure imposed on the holy site,
warning of the consequences of such measures. Netanyahu assured Abbas the
status quo will not change at the compound, caling for all sides to stay


#2.  Official Israel Government press release

PM Netanyahu Speaks with Palestinian Authority Chairman Abu Mazen
(Communicated by the Prime Minister’s Media Adviser)

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, today (Friday, 14 July 2017), spoke by
telephone with Palestinian Authority Chairman Abu Mazen, who condemned the
terrorist attack on the Temple Mount. The Prime Minister made it clear that
Israel would take all necessary actions to maintain security on the Temple
Mount, without changing the status quo.


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