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Palestine slams US ambassador to Israel for 'complicating road towards peace'

Israeli soldiers attacking Palestinian child protesting Trump's Jerusalem decision [Getty]

Date of publication: 12 January, 2018

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The Palestinian foreign ministry has slammed the US ambassador to Israel for endorsing Israel's illegal occupation and shaming Palestinians for refusing to stay passive.
The Palestinian foreign ministry has accused the US ambassador to Israel of endorsing an illegal occupation, saying he is “violating defenceless Palestinian citizens”.

"United States ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, attacked the Palestinian Authority regarding the so-called the martyrs and prisoners allowance’s bill. Friedman’s accusations reflected his prejudiced and selective attitude towards the occupation, settlements construction, and the Palestinian just and legitimate national rights,” the foreign ministry said in a statement on Thursday.

The statement added that Friedman is “further complicated the road towards the peace process and the resumption of negotiations between the Israeli and Palestinian sides” according to official Palestinian Authority news agency WAFA.

The US ambassador to Israel David Friedman earlier this week blamed Palestinian authorities for the failure of peace efforts, after an Israeli settler was killed in occupied West Bank.

Friedman, a supporter of West Bank settlements, accused a Palestinian of carrying out the attack late on Tuesday.

"An Israeli father of six was killed last night in cold blood by Palestinian terrorists," Friedman said on Twitter on Wednesday after a 35-year-old was killed near an illegal Israeli settlement near Nablus.

"Hamas praises the killers and PA laws will provide them financial rewards. Look no further to why there is no peace [sic]."

Animosities boiling to the surface

Tensions between Palestine and the US have spiralled since US President Donald Trump recognised Jerusalem as Israel’s capital in December.

The move ended decades of Washington’s neutrality on Jerusalem, a key issue in the Palestine-Israel conflict and caused global outrage at what analysts describe as a flagrant violation of Palestinian sovereignty and a blow to their right to statehood.

The Trump administration’s endorsement of settlements in the occupied West Bank is another factor behind the rise in tensions between Ramallah and Washington.

Israel's settlement project in the occupied territories is illegal under international law and seen by the international community as a major obstacle to peace with the Palestinians.

About 400,000 Israelis live in illegal settlements in the West Bank, a Palestinian territory occupied by Israel for 50 years. 

A further 200,000 live in East Jerusalem, annexed by Israel in a move never recognised by the international community.

On Wednesday, Israeli authorities approved more than 1,100 new settlement homes to be built in the occupied West Bank.

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