Srinagar: Iran and Turkey have joined the Palestinian leadership across the divide in lashing out at the United Arab Emirates over its decision to normalize diplomatic relations with Israel, accusing it of betraying the Palestinian cause.
Iran’s Foreign Ministry called the US-brokered deal a “dagger that was unjustly struck by the UAE in the backs of the Palestinian people and all Muslims.” The ministry called it an act of “strategic stupidity” from Abu Dhabi and Tel Aviv that will only strengthen the Tehran-backed “axis of resistance”.
“The oppressed people of Palestine and all the free nations of the world will never forgive the normalising of relations with the criminal Israeli occupation regime and the complicity in its crimes,” a ministry statement said.
“This is stabbing the Palestinians in the back and will strengthen the regional unity against the Zionist regime,” it added.
Iran’s Tasnim news agency, affiliated to the country’s elite Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, said the deal was “shameful”.
Turkey said the UAE had no authority to negotiate with Israel on behalf of the Palestinians or “to make concessions on matters vital to Palestine.”
The Turkish Foreign Ministry in a statement said “History and the conscience of the region’s peoples will not forget and never forgive this hypocritical behaviour of the UAE, betraying the Palestinian cause for the sake of its narrow interests.”
The Palestinian people and administration were right to react strongly against the agreement, the ministry said.
“It is extremely worrying that the UAE should, with a unilateral action, try and do away with the  Arab Peace Plan developed by the Arab League. It is not in the slightest credible that this three-way declaration should be presented as supporting the Palestinian cause.”
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has also told the Foreign Ministry to evaluate the possibility of recalling Ambassador from Abu Dhabi and suspending diplomatic ties with the UAE.
Ras Mubarak, a parliamentarian in Ghana, called the UAE’s move “a betrayal” of the Palestinian people, comparing their plight to that of Black South Africans during the apartheid era.
In a statement, Mubarak said: “During the South African people’s struggle against apartheid, African states formed the frontline of resistance against Pretoria’s brutal regime. From Zambia to Tanzania, to Ghana and Algeria, countries across the African continent provided logistical, political and economic support to South Africa’s liberation struggle.”
“All Arab states must treat The apartheid state of Israel in the same way that African states treated apartheid South Africa. There can be no normalization of ties with Israel while the Palestinian people are still occupied; there can be no normalization of ties while Israel still practices apartheid, colonialism and siege against the Palestinians,” the statement added.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas denounced the accord in a statement issued by his spokesman.
“The Palestinian leadership rejects and denounces the UAE, Israeli and US trilateral, surprising announcement,” said Nabil Abu Rudeineh, a senior adviser to Abbas.
Abu Rudeineh, reading from a statement outside Abbas’s headquarters in Ramallah in the occupied West Bank, said the deal was a “betrayal of Jerusalem, Al-Aqsa and the Palestinian cause.”
Hanan Ashrawi, an outspoken member of the Palestinian Liberation Organization’s executive committee who has served in various leadership positions in Palestine, said the UAE’s announcement was the equivalent of being “sold out” by “friends”.
Hamas rejected the deal saying it did not serve the cause of the Palestinians.
Hamas spokesman, Hazem Qassem, said in a statement that “This agreement does absolutely not serve the Palestinian cause, it rather serves the Zionist narrative. This agreement encourages the occupation [by Israel] to continue its denial of the rights of our Palestinian people, and even to continue its crimes against our people.”
“What is required is to support the legitimate struggle of our people against the occupation and not to establish agreements with this occupier, and any annexation we will face by a Palestinian confrontation that is supported by the Arabs and internationally, and not by signing normalisation agreements with them [Israel],” the statement added.
The so called” Abraham agreement” announced by United States President Donald Trump on Thursday makes the UAE the first Gulf Arab state — and the third Arab country after Egypt and Jordan — to have full diplomatic ties with Israel.
The deal secures an Israeli commitment to halt further annexation of Palestinian lands in the occupied West Bank, which the Palestinians view as the heartland of their future state. The UAE, which has never fought Israel and has quietly been improving ties for years, has justified the move by the same argument.
However, addressing reporters in Tel Aviv, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he agreed to “delay” the annexation as part of the deal with the UAE but the plans remain “on the table”.
With inputs from Associated Press and Al Jazeera
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