Israel has the right to claim ownership of even more stolen Palestinian land, a senior US diplomat has said.
US ambassador to Israel David Friedman told the New York Times newspaper that Israel was “entitled to retain some portion” of the land it seized after invading in 1967.
And he denied the fact that “the entire West Bank and East Jerusalem belong” to Palestinians, who have been gradually forced from their land since Israel was created in 1948.
Friedman’s comments are the latest indication that the US is preparing to allow Israel to annexe vast swathes of Palestinian land in a coming deal. He also hinted that the deal would not allow Palestinians to form their own state on the remaining land.
Some 850,000 Palestinians were forced to flee in 1948. Israel militarily occupied the remaining Palestinian land in 1967, and has built vast settlements there in a bid to claim the land permanently.