U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has criticized Israel's insistence that the Palestinians publicly declare that they recognize Israel as a Jewish state.
According to AFP, Kerry said on Thursday that recognition had already been made in UN resolutions and by the late Palestinian president Yasser Arafat. and it is a mistake for Israel to keep insisting on it as the two sides work towards a two-state peace agreement.
“I think it's a mistake for some people to be raising it again and again as the critical decider of their attitude toward the possibility of a state and peace, and we've obviously made that clear,” Kerry said in a session of testimony on the State Department budget.
There was no official Israeli response to Kerry's comments, but Israeli radio quoted an unidentified political source as saying that it was “easier for the Americans to pressure Israel to give up on the demand for recognition of a Jewish state than to deal with the Palestinians.”
Israel and the Palestinians have been locked in talks that U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry fought hard to kick-start in July after a three-year hiatus, but the negotiations have faltered over key issues.
After a meeting chaired by Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas on Wednesday, the PLO Executive Committee blasted “attempts to extract recognition of the Jewishness of… Israel in order to erase Palestinian history and rights in one sentence.”
Demo against Israel held in Amman
On Friday, 2000 Jordanians held a demonstration in front of the Israeli Embassy in Amman over the killing of a Jordanian judge.
The protesters chanted anti-Israel slogans and called upon the Jordanian government to deport the Israeli ambassador and to annul the peace treaty between the two countries. Thousands of riot police stood on hand and stopped protesters from attacking the embassy, AP reported.
Jordan's Muslim Brotherhood organized the protest.
The death of Raed Zeiter, a Jordanian magistrate of Palestinian descent, has caused an uproar in Jordan, triggering street protests and calls in parliament to annul the 1994 peace agreement with Israel.
Meanwhile, the majority of the Jordanian House of Representatives voted on Thursday to seek the release of soldier Ahmad Adakkamsh, who has been sentenced to life imprisonment, the expulsion of the Israeli ambassador from Amman, and the recall of his Jordanian counterpart from Tel Aviv.
According to Middle East Monitor, a majority of MPs agreed with the demands called for during the discussion of the issue of the death of Judge Raed Zeiter in the House of Representatives, but other members of parliament expressed opposition.
The parliament approved, with a majority, the request of the Jordanian attorney general to file a lawsuit against the commander of the Israeli army, which was done on Tuesday.
The parliament has decided twice to expel the Israeli ambassador from Amman and recall his Jordanian counterpart from Tel Aviv, and two requests were previously made for the release of Adakkamsh.
The MPs have given the government until next Tuesday to implement the parliamentary recommendations, threatening to topple it if it does not comply with the MPs' decisions.
The parliament called for the release of Jordanians and Palestinians held in Israeli prisons and demanded that a thorough investigation be conducted that would bring the killers of martyr Zeiter to the International Criminal Court.
The MPs also said joint Jordanian-Palestinian control over the Palestinian side of border crossings should be established, they should be informed about developments in the case of the murder of Zeiter, and the Jordanian government should take the initiative in the efforts to reconcile Fatah and Hamas.
Israel expressed regret for the killing of the Jordanian judge, who is of Palestinian origin, by its soldiers on Monday. Zeiter was killed on the Allenby Bridge crossing between the West Bank and Jordan.
Since the incident, Jordanians have held many demonstrations condemning the killing of Zeiter and demanding that ties with Israel be cut.
Subscribe to our RSS feed to stay in touch and receive all of TT updates right in your feed reader