German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has denounced a remark from Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas that Israel had perpetrated multiple “holocausts” against Palestinians.
Scholz had come under fire for failing to challenge Abbas’ accusations during their joint press conference in Berlin on Tuesday.
“I am disgusted by the outrageous remarks made by Palestinian President Mahmoud #Abbas. For us Germans in particular, any relativization of the singularity of the Holocaust is intolerable and unacceptable,” Scholz tweeted in English on Wednesday.
At their joint press conference in Berlin on Tuesday, a journalist suggested that Abbas should apologize for the killing of 11 Israeli athletes by Palestinian terrorists during the 1972 Munich Olympics. The president replied: “From 1947 to the present day, Israel has committed 50 massacres in Palestinian villages and cities, in Deir Yassin, Tantura, Kafr Qasim and many others – 50 massacres, 50 holocausts.”
While cameras captured Scholz grimacing at this unconventional use of the word “holocaust,” he remained silent at the time.
However, later in the day, the chancellor addressed the ‘holocausts’ comment when speaking to Germany’s Bild media outlet before making his position known on Twitter the following day.
Nonetheless, the fact that he did not address the comment at the press conference caused a wave of criticism in the country.