Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas said Saturday the Palestinian people would not be displaced, in an address at a peace summit in Cairo aimed at preventing the Israel-Gaza crisis from escalating into a regional war.
“We warn of the danger of [the] displacement of our civilians from their houses or their displacement from the West Bank or from Jerusalem,” said Abbas, who leads the PA, which is in charge of semi-autonomous parts of the Israeli-occupied West Bank.
“We will never accept this forcible displacement and will stand tall on our land,” Abbas added.
The West Bank has seen a surge in violence since the Hamas militant group’s surprise attack on Israel near the Gaza Strip on October 7, which killed more than 1,400 people. At least 83 people have been killed in clashes with Israeli settlers and police in the West Bank, Agence France-Presse reported Friday.
In retaliation for Hamas’ attack, Israel declared a siege of Gaza, launching thousands of airstrikes on the Hamas-controlled Palestinian enclave which have killed more than 4,100 people. Israeli authorities have also ordered about 1.1 million civilians to evacuate Gaza City and move to the southern part of the enclave — which borders Egypt — amid reports it is preparing to launch a ground assault on Gaza.
At the summit in Cairo on Saturday, Egypt’s leader Abdel Fattah el-Sisi said he opposed the displacement of Palestinians into his country. “Egypt says the solution to the Palestinian issue is not displacement, its only solution is justice and the Palestinians’ access to legitimate rights and living in an independent state,” el-Sisi said, according to Reuters.