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Sanders blasts Israel's 'killing of unarmed civilians,' 'inhumane Gaza blockade'

Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders said he will meet with Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton soon
Mandel Ngan (AFP)
In fiery speech at J-Street, the Vermont progressive says Israel is guilty of 'massive overreaction'

Israel is guilty of shooting at unarmed protesters at Gaza border, a response that represents a "massive overreaction" to Palestinian protests against an "inhumane blockade" of the coastal enclave by the Jewish State, US Senator Bernie Sanders charged on Monday in a fiery speech before a dovish Jewish lobby.

Over 30 Palestinians were killed and over a thousand injured by Israeli fire over three consecutive weekends of protests along the border fence with Israel. Palestinians are demanding that hundreds of thousands of Palestinian refugees who fled or were expelled during the war surrounding Israel's creation in 1948 be allowed to return.

According to the United Nations, some 1.3 million of Gaza's two million residents are refugees and the protest is calling for them to be allowed to return to land that is now Israel.

"I understand that the Netanyahu government is trying to make this all about Hamas in order to de-legitimize any opposition to the blockade and occupation," the left-wing senator told the crowd at the annual J Street conference. "The presence of Hamas members among a crowd of tens of thousands does not justify the level of violence we saw, and frankly it’s amazing to me that anyone would find that point controversial."

"I have condemned Hamas’ use of terrorist violence and will continue to do so. But that violence cannot excuse shooting at unarmed protesters, and it cannot excuse trapping almost two million people inside Gaza," the 2016 Democratic presidential candidate further added. 

"I see a Palestinian people crushed underneath a military occupation now in its fiftieth year creating a daily reality of fear humiliation and resentment. Ending that occupation and enabling the Palestinians to have independence and self-determination in a sovereign and economically viable state of their own is in the interests of the US, Israel and the Palestinians." 

During his Democratic presidential campaign in 2016 Sanders, expressed his intentions to see his party focus more on Palestinian rights and revise its wording regarding US-Israeli relations. The senator has previously gone on record as saying he wants to see a more "even-handed approach to the conflict with a commitment to “a just and lasting Israeli-Palestinian accord, producing two states for two people."

Sanders said in the past that the US is "going to have to treat the Palestinian people with respect and dignity,” if there is to be any chance of peace."

Comments

(5)

Bernie the self hating Jew

Mr Sanders doesn't know the history of the conflict. The Palestinian refugees were a product of Arab aggression. Four Arab countries and local Arab militias attacked Israel a day after it proclaimed its independence in 1948. The Arabs lost this war of aggression, a war they started and thereby produced Palestinian refugees. It should be up to the Arab nations to deal with a refugee problem they produced. Gaza also shares a border with The Arab Republic of Egypt yet Sanders doesn't wonder why it keeps its border with Gaza closed.

mr sanders if you pay arabs all that money thats sounds lije respect to me

A crass antisemite.

safe and sound ib his castle on the other side of the world!

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