Itongadol.- Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu sought to present Israel\’s case to the world in a special press conference to the foreign press on Thursday, in which he and his senior aides detailed the direct link between Palestinian incitement and the current wave of stabbing attacks which has been plaguing the country for the last two weeks.
Netanyahu said that he sought to refute the "two lies" being presented by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas: that Israel is attempting to change the status quo at the Temple Mount and that Israel is carrying out "field executions" against Palestinians.
The prime minister and his aides spoke in particular about the case of Ahmed Manashra, the 13-year-old boy who Abbas said in a speech on Wednesday was executed in cold blood by Israel.
"First of all, he isn\’t dead, he\’s alive, and he isn\’t innocent, he tried to kill a 13-year-old riding a bike, who was the true innocent," Netanyahu said of the attack the boy carried out earlier this week in Pisgat Ze\’ev.
"He\’s now being treated at Hadassah hospital in Israel," Netanyahu said. "We must tell the truth, that\’s the only way to fight this. We ask our friends to look at these facts, see the truth and not draw false symmetry between Israeli victims and Palestinian terrorists," he added.
Mark Regev, the Prime Minister\’s spokesman then took the stage refuting claims that Israel was changing the status quo on the Temple Mount. He recounted the rules for Temple Mount prayers, that only Muslims were allowed to pray on the Temple Mount.
Ofir Gendelman, Netanyahu\’s spokesman for the Arabic world then gave a presentation on Palestinian incitement. He started by pointing out Abbas\’s comments that Jews were defiling the Temple Mount with their "filthy feet."
He then showed examples of Fatah propaganda calling for stabbing attacks in order to protect al-Aksa mosque.
"Thousands and thousands of posters and memes have called on Palestinians to perpetrate stabbing attacks," he said.
Hamas has played its role in the incitement as well, Gendelman said, showing a "gruesome video instructing Palestinians how to stab Israelis to death."
The director of Haddasah Medical Center then took the stage, describing the treatment being given to the boy.
Micky Rosenfeld, the National Police Spokesman, then described police efforts to prevent the onslaught of attacks. Rosenfeld showed the video from the Pisgat Ze\’ev attack, describing that the boys were armed and "hunting for a next victim."
Netanyahu said that he was talking with US Secretary of State John Kerry and other leaders about setting up a meeting with the Palestinian leadership. "It could be useful to stop this incitement," he said, when asked if he was open to a diplomatic initiative.
"I have no problem of meeting with Abbas, Kerry, Jordan\’s King Abdullah and others," Netanyahu said. He added, however that Abbas had to stop his incitement and lies. "The international community has given Abbas a pass. When someone gives him a pass to incite violence he will continue to incite to violence," he said.
When asked if Abbas was a partner for peace, Netanyahu said that first he must work to calm the current violence rather than inflaming it before peace could be addressed.
Netanyahu rejected a State Department spokesman\’s comments Wednesday that Israel may be using excessive force against Palestinian attackers, saying that such violence would not be accepted on the streets of New York, and any country would respond in the same way.
He called the allegations of excessive force unfair and false. "We expect fair minded observers to see that use of force is justified, given that knife and ax wielders are on streets."
Netanyahu rejected the notion that expanded settlements were to blame for the terror attack, because "there is no massive wave of settlement construction."
"The wave of violence is not about Palestinian frustration, except the frustration that Israel exists, we plan to continue to exist," he stated.