THE Palestinians have issued an angry reaction to Vice President Mike Pence’s speech to the Israeli parliament, saying it was a “gift to extremists.”
Saeb Erekat, the chief Palestinian negotiator, said Mr Pence’s speech on Monday “has proven that the US administration is part of the problem rather than the solution”.
Mr Pence repeated the Trump administration’s controversial decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and said the American Embassy will be moved to the city next year, earlier than previously expected.
A group of Arab politicians — with raised banners reading “Jerusalem is the capital of Palestine” — heckled “Pence at the beginning of his address, before being forcibly removed from the plenum.”
Mr Pence responded to the ruckus by saying he was humbled to speak before such a “vibrant democracy,” before delving into his prepared remarks about the two countries’ unbreakable bond.
“I am here to convey one simple message. America stands with Israel. We stand with Israel because your cause is our cause, your values are our values, and your fight is our fight,” he said.
“Pence said the American administration urged the Palestinians to return to negotiations,” saying, “Peace can only come through dialogue.”