Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas legitimized the ongoing wave of terror and violence against Israel as “justified popular unrest” in a speech made Monday.

Abbas explained that the attacks against Israel – concentrated mainly in Judea, Samaria and Jerusalem – were triggered by “the despair of young Palestinians over the lack of a political horizon for the two-state solution, the invasion of the Al-Aqsa Mosque and the continuation of settlement building and military checkpoint deployment.”

The speech, marking the UN’s International Anti-Corruption Day, was given at the Red Cross and Red Crescent headquarters in El-Bireh. Abbas blamed the “lack of an alternative” by Israel as the motivation for violence.

Young Palestinians, Abbas added, have given up on the possibility of a two-state solution, saying “our state doesn’t exist because of the settlements and checkpoints, and despair has started to seep in.”

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Speaking on the status of the Temple Mount, which Abbas and other Palestinian leaders have used to make insightful comments against Israel, Abbas said that supposed “attacks on the Al-Aqsa Mosque” by Israel have not stopped. He added that Palestinians are “patient and steadfast about our rights.

Israeli government spokesman Mark Regev condemned the PA leaders comments, saying, “There can never be justification for wanton attacks on civilians like we saw today,” referring to a car-ramming attack Monday that injured 14 people, including a 15-month-old baby boy.

Since October, more than 20 Israelis have been killed by Palestinian terrorists with hundreds more wounded in a range of attacks.