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Jewish US presidential candidate Sanders calls Israel’s government ‘racist’

“I am 100 percent pro-Israel,” Sanders said. “Israel has every right to exist and to exist in peace and security and not be subjected to terrorist attacks.”

Jewish Democratic Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders is standing by his criticism of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, saying his right government ‘racist’.

The 2020 presidential hopeful Sanders participated Monday in a CNN town hall in New Hampshire event with Democratic voters called for a change in America’s policy toward Israel-Palestine conflict. The United States goal in the Middle East should try to bring people together and “not just support one country, which is now run by a right-wing — dare I say — racist government.”

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Sanders described Netanyahu’s approach toward the Palestinians as “oppressive,” and said should he be elected, his administration would be more sympathetic to Palestinian concerns.

Earlier this month, in the run-up to Israel’s election, Sanders slated Netanyahu for supporting a deal to allow the extremist Otzma Yehudit (Kahane) party to join his coalition and for his promises to annex West Bank settlements. He told NBC News: “I’m not a great fan of his, and, frankly, I hope he loses his election.”

The 77-year-old senator added that he is “not anti-Israel” – nor does he oppose sending military aid to the Jewish State – but feels Netanyahu’s policies don’t help to advance peace.

“As a young man, I spent a number of months in Israel. I worked on a kibbutz for a while,” Sanders said, “I have family in Israel. I am not anti-Israel. But the fact of the matter is that Netanyahu is a right-wing politician who I think is treating the Palestinian people extremely unfairly.” Sanders’ audience erupted in applause and cheers.

“I am 100 percent pro-Israel,” Sanders said. “Israel has every right to exist, and to exist in peace and security and not be subjected to terrorist attacks. But the United States needs to deal with not just Israel, but with the Palestinian people as well.”



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