By Julian Pecquet - 12/03/13 05:17 PM EST
The Palestinian delegation to the U.S. is tearing into Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) over comments he made recently calling Palestinians a “threat” to Israel that has been repeatedly crushed.
Schumer, who is Jewish, made the remarks at a fundraiser for an Orthodox Jewish welfare organization late last month, vowing to push for new sanctions against Iran and get the country to give up “all enriched uranium.”
The hawkish rhetoric from the Senate's No. 3 Democrat clashes with the Obama administration's diplomatic push for a nuclear deal with Iran and an Israeli-Palestinian peace accord.
The Palestinian delegation sent Schumer a formal protest letter on Monday.
“It is not in the interest of the United States to perpetuate the conflict between Palestinians and Israelis with inflammatory rhetoric or action that demonizes and falsely portrays Palestinians as a threat to anyone,” the letter reads. “The only thing Palestinians have 'risen' up against is Israel’s illegal military occupation which ... is a right enshrined in international law.”
An official with the delegation told The Hill the remarks were “highly disturbing,” and called the Palestinians a “key actor in the political process” dedicated to achieve “peace and security in the region and beyond.”
Israeli-Palestinian talks have stalled since Secretary of State John Kerry helped relaunch them in July, with the two sides clashing over continued Israeli settlement construction in disputed territories.
Schumer's office declined to comment.
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