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Civil war warning from Palestinian leader Abbas

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Civil war warning from Palestinian leader Abbas


Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas has delivered a stark warning to his people, exactly 40 years since the start of the Six-Day War.

It is a painful anniversary for Palestinians who gathered in Ramallah but their president told them that the dangers of infighting could be worse than Israeli occupation.

In a televised speech from the city, he said internal violence had brought Palestinians to the brink of civil war.

Yet, speaking after the fiercest clashes between Fatah and Hamas forces in two weeks, Abbas also assured Palestinians that statehood was within reach. He said this would help erase the memory of the defeat inflicted by Israel on the Arabs.

Anniversary protests have also been held by Israelis.

Peace activists gathered in Hebron. Security forces separated them from a demonstration by Jewish settlers who live in the divided West Bank city in heavily-guarded enclaves, vastly outnumbered by Palestinians.

As far as the settlers are concernced, however, there is no question of leaving. They defend their presence in Hebron as a biblical right.

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