Jerusalem Mayor Barkat Thanks VP Pence For His Support Of Jerusalem

28 January, 2018, 00:53 | Author: Kim Reid
  • Jerusalem Mayor Barkat Thanks VP Pence For His Support Of Jerusalem

KEITH: So I want to start by saying that over the years, American politicians traveling overseas have limited their discussions of domestic USA politics, or they've tried to keep partisanship to a minimum.

The brief exchange was part of an incredibly warm welcome for Pence in Israel, which has praised the American decision last month to recognize Jerusalem as the capital.

Pence responded, "I am here to convey a simple message from the hearts of the American people". But the Schumer shutdown failed. Pence has visited Israel multiple times, has a history of supporting Israel in Congress, and most importantly is a devoted evangelical Zionist; all things that do not apply to Trump. Yesterday at a military installation near the Syrian border, with USA troops standing behind him, Pence accused Democrats of politicizing military pay. "Whoever is not ready to talk with the Americans about peace - does not want peace", he said at a meeting of ambassadors in Jerusalem.

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As Pence began to speak in the Knesset, a group of Arab legislators heckled him and were immediately escorted out by security.

MCEVERS: OK, so we hear some applause there, but how was this received? Now, there was one section of the parliament chamber where there was no one standing or sitting, for that matter, and that's because at the very top of Pence's remarks, a number of Arab Israeli lawmakers stood in protest. Obviously, no Palestinian leader could sign to this. And they were quite rapidly escorted out of the room in sort of a rough way.

The Palestinian territories have remained tense since December 6, when U.S. President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capital, drawing condemnation from across the Arab and Muslim world.

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In related news, security forces on Saturday morning found 12 explosive devices connected with electric cables ear the road connecting Palestinian Authority (PA) cities of Illar and Atil to Tulkarem, reported Arutz Sheva. And in Pence's first two stops on this Middle East tour, Egypt and Jordan, he got an earful of concern about that move.

In his speech, Pence spoke about the stalled peace process and "strongly" urged the Palestinians to return to the negotiating table.

And while Pence was in the region making promises of more rigorous USA support to Israel, Abbas was in Brussels, the headquarters of the EU, to appeal for strong European backing for a fair settlement of the Palestinian cause, rather than the one offered by Washington.

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Pence, the same source said, asked his interlocutors during the Arab legs of his tour to remind Abbas that if he insisted on rejecting the USA vision for a settlement of the Palestinian cause, and if he was to fail to check popular Palestinian resentment against the Trump administration, then the head of the PA needs to be prepared for a serious withdrawal of United States financial support, not just for the PA but also for agencies providing help to the Palestinians, including UNRWA. And really his message on this whole trip has been, yes, President Trump has chose to move this embassy but that they still want to move forward with the peace process, that this does not settle any final status issues, any specific boundaries, any sovereignty issues - none of that. Pence's support is neither transactional nor illusory, and thus Israelis wave off things that might give them pause with other politicians, such as Pence's deliberate ambiguity this week over whether or not the Western Wall is in Israel.

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