Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz lashed out at Democratic frontrunner Bernie Sanders for making a “horrifying comment” on the possible reversal of the US Embassy’s relocation to Jerusalem and calling Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu a “reactionary racist” during the latest round of primary debates.
Katz went as far as to call on American voters to drop their support for Sanders, while at the same time, covering his bases to avoid possible accusations of foreign election meddling.
“We don’t intervene in the internal American electoral process, which is splendid […] Naturally, people who support Israel will not support someone who goes against these things”, Katz said while referring to Donald Trump’s decision to recognise Jerusalem as the Israeli capital and Sander’s intentions to reverse it if he wins the presidential race in 2020.
The Israeli official stressed that there was no Jew in the world which “hadn’t dreamed of Jerusalem”, explaining his criticism of Sanders.
The Vermont senator, who has already secured victories in several rounds of Democratic primaries and who is of Jewish descent himself, has long been known as a supporter of Palestinian rights.
He has criticised Israel and those who support its current policies, namely the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC). Sanders has harshly condemned Trump’s embassy move in the past, and argued that it would be detrimental to the US status as a broker in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
His possible opponent in the 2020 presidential race, President Donald Trump, in turn, has tried to use the Jerusalem embassy move, as well as other pro-Israel diplomatic decisions, to his advantage, calling on American Jews to vote for his re-election.