US. (QNN)- The US Special Representative for International Negotiations, Jason Greenblatt, has said that the occupation state of Israel is the “victim” in its conflict with the Palestinians and that he “cannot think of single instances” when Israel made a mistake.
In an interview aired yesterday by US broadcaster PBS, Greenblatt was asked what responsibility Israel bears for its now 71-year-old conflict with the Palestinians.
The US envoy replied:
“I think that Israel is actually more the victim than the party that’s responsible. From the moment of its formation, they were attacked multiple times. They continue to be attacked with terrorism. So — I’m not sure I understand the premise of the question.”
When pressed whether Israel had made mistakes, Greenblatt quipped, “nobody’s perfect, right?”
He added that he “cannot think of single instances” in which Israel made a mistake or overstepped its authority, saying:
“I think that they’re trying their best to succeed. They have actually succeeded in many ways, especially economically, under very, very trying circumstances.”
Greenblatt also rejected the term “occupied” to describe the West Bank and called the use of the word “settlements” “pejorative.”
Greenblatt called the word “settlements” “pejorative,” saying he preferred to refer to the Jewish communities established beyond Israel’s Green Line as “neighborhoods and cities.” He also rejected the term “occupied” to describe the West Bank, saying “I would argue that the land is disputed…Calling it occupied territory does not help resolve the conflict.”
Under international law, both the West Bank and Gaza Strip remain classified as occupied territories.
Along with U.S. President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner, Greenblatt recently unveiled the economic component of Trump’s long-touted peace plan.
Though the political elements of the “deal of the century” have not yet been unveiled, the plan is not expected to demand that Israel dismantle its West Bank settlements. Though the US has not yet changed its policy on annexation, the precedent set by President Donald Trump’s recognition of the occupied Syrian Golan Heights as Israeli could pave the way for a similar move in the West Bank.