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Netanyahu confronting not only Palestinians but entire world by Rafah invasion: Official

Mustafa Barghouti, head of the Palestinian National Initiative party, makes an exclusive interview with Press TV on Tuesday.

A senior Palestinian official has underscored the Israeli regime’s failure in its months-long war in the besieged Gaza Strip, saying Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is confronting not only Palestinians but the whole world by initiating the invasion of the southern city of Rafah.

In an exclusive interview with Press TV on Tuesday, Mustafa Barghouti - head of the Palestinian National Initiative party - discussed Hamas' acceptance of an Egyptian-brokered ceasefire and Israel's move to press ahead with a full-scale offensive in Rafah.

Barghouti said that Israel had initially accepted the ceasefire proposal, but it subsequently rejected the same agreement after Hamas approved its terms without making any changes.

“Hamas embarrassed both Israel and the US by accepting the ceasefire as they had claimed that the resistance movement was an obstacle to the agreement,” he said.

“Netanyahu is in a very difficult position because his whole attack on Gaza has failed, all the goals declared for his war and genocide on the Palestinians have failed, he could not bring back Israeli prisoners by force, he could not impose his security control on Gaza, he could not extract and destroy resistance as he had promised, and the most important thing, he could not achieve the main goal of Israeli operation which is the ethnic cleansing of all Palestinian from Gaza.”

Barghouti said the Israeli prime minister is now trying to cover up the failure by invading Rafah and its only crossing to Gaza, which is in violation of international law.

“The proposal that Hamas agreed to was about ending the Israeli war and the regime’s complete withdrawal from Gaza but this act in Rafah goes completely in a different direction and it is something that Netanyahu wants to show as a sign of victory and could be an escalation that would go further and destroy whole Rafah, which is the worst kind of massacre ever.” 

“After Hamas accepted the ceasefire, Netanyahu is confronting not only Palestinians but the whole world, everybody is angry at him, including Israeli people, especially the families of Israeli prisoners, because he is running a personal show, a personal goal and he knows that the end of this war is the beginning of his end of his political career and he may go to prison,” he added.

Outlining the possibilities that could unfold given Netanyahu's total failure in Gaza, Barghouti said he is running into a dangerous adventure and running the whole region into a dangerous adventure by an escalation that would lead to a total explosion of the region.

The Palestinian official pointed to the US role in the escalation and said the administration of US President Joe Biden should force the Israeli regime to stop the war.

“If the United States of America is really concerned about stopping this terrible genocide and stopping this escalation, they are the ones who have to immediately pressure Netanyahu to accept the ceasefire agreement,” Barghouti said.

“If Biden does not move immediately and force Israel to stop its genocide and crimes, he will lose the election. They are doomed to lose the elections because he will antagonize all those who are pro-Palestine and pro-justice and pro-peace in the Democratic camp in the US.” 

Barghouti touched on Israel’s plans after the invasion of Rafah and said Netanyahu is doing everything he can to escalate, to postpone and to obstruct, hoping that the US will save him but “this man is doomed to failure.”

“Americans are angry at Netanyahu not because he killed Palestinians, including 17,000 children. They are angry at him because he failed, he failed after seven months of operation. He had promised Americans that he could finish after one months, two months, but after seven months he has failed in achieving any of his goals.”

Barghouti said if the US allows Netanyahu to proceed with the massacre in Rafah, it will create uproar all over the world given that the reputation of the US in the region is down completely and the attack would lead to further isolation of Tel Aviv and Washington internationally, which would have serious diplomatic political and economic consequences.

Israel has already killed more than 34,700 people, mostly children and women, in Gaza since early October, according to the ministry of health in the besieged Palestinian territory.

Hamas has warned Israel that any ground operation in Rafah would have serious consequences for the regime. The Palestinian resistance group said in a statement on Monday that “any military operation in Rafah will not be a walk in the park for the fascist occupation army.”

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