Palestinians slam US Israel envoy's 'ignorance'

Americans for Peace Now urge firing of Ambassador Friedman

Palestinians demand the West Bank as part of a future state.

Speaking to the Israeli website, he said: "I think the settlements are part of Israel".

Friedman is a member of President Donald Trump's team spearheading efforts to restart Israeli-Palestinian peace talks. According to long-held U.S. policy comporting with worldwide law, all territory captured by Israel from Jordan in 1967 is occupied territory, under dispute, the permanent status of which will be determined in negotiations between Israel and the PLO, serving as representative of the Palestinian people. "The 1967 borders were viewed by everybody as not secure, so Israel would retain a meaningful portion of the West Bank, and it would return that which it didn't need for peace and security".

Responding to Friedman, a Palestinian official said to The Guardian that "Israel occupies 100% of the West Bank" and that if he were "a us citizen I would be extremely concerned that my ambassador in Israel is using his position to try to emphasize the importance of settlements to Israel".

A Palestinian killed three Israelis and seriously wounded another before he was shot dead at a West Bank settlement near Jerusalem.

"I think the settlements are part of Israel", he said. "There was always supposed to be some expectation of [Israeli] expansion" into Judea and Samaria.

Friedman went on to justify Israeli expansion in the West Bank by saying that Israel occupies a mere "2 percent" of Palestinian territory which has "important" nationalistic, historical and religious significance to Israel.

"And I think that's exactly what Israel has done".

The US' ambassador to Israel has been admonished by Washington DC for giving an interview in which he suggested that only two per cent of land in the West Bank is occupied by Israel. "If I was a United States citizen I would be extremely concerned that my ambassador in Israel is using his position to try to emphasise the importance of settlements to Israel". "I mean, [Israel's] only occupying two percent of the West Bank", he elaborated, seemingly referring to the built up area of settlements beyond the Green Line.

UN Resolution 242, adopted in the aftermath of the Six-Day War, called for Israel to withdraw from the territories it occupied in 1967 in exchange for security guarantees with Arab neighbors.

"The idea was that Israel would be entitled to secure borders", he told Israeli Walla. "Obviously its clear what is going on here, 54% of American foreign aid goes to Israel, 26% of that allows Israelis to buy weapons from Israeli suppliers and the list just goes on and on", Dankof said. Israel maintains civil and military control of the entirety of Area C, which makes up roughly 60% of the West Bank, and control of all the borders.

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