Russian President Vladimir Putin and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas held a telephone discussion on Saturday on the occasion of the Mulsim holiday of Eid al-Adha, the Muslim holiday celebrating Abraham’s willingness to sacrifice Ishmael.
Russian media reported that Abbas initiated the call.
“The Palestinian President expressed his full support for the Russian leadership’s actions to defend the constitutional order and the rule of law during the events of June 24,” the Kremlin’s website stated, referring to an attempted armed coup by the paramilitary Wagner Group led by Yevgeny Prigozhin. The rebellion failed, and Prigozhin went into exile.
Abbas was the only world leader other than Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan who expressed support for the Russian president in the wake of the attempted rebellion.
“The two leaders stated their mutual commitment to the further progressive development of the traditionally friendly Russia-Palestine relations,” the statement continued. “The President of Russia reaffirmed his principled stance supporting a just and sustainable solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict based on existing international laws.”
The war in Ukraine has led to global polarization, with the US and its allies waging massive sanctions against Russia after it invaded Ukraine. Russia is not entirely alone and has forged relations with China, Iran, and others. The PA has made several statements indicating its preference to ally with Russia.
The Biden administration reopened relations with the PA, reinstating funding despite the Taylor Force Act and rejoining UNRWA. The PA ha alsos strengthened its ties with Russia. In a meeting with Putin in October 2022, just a few months after President Biden entered the Oval Office, Abbas said, “We don’t trust America, and you know our position. We don’t trust it, we don’t rely on it, and under no circumstances can we accept that America is the sole party in resolving a problem.”
In a rare rebuke, the White House issued a statement saying it was “deeply disappointed to hear President Abbas’s remarks to President Putin.”