Kerry: 'Mistake' to Use Jewish State Recognition as Deal Breaker

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U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry told the House Committee on Foreign Affairs on Thursday that it is problematic for people to continue raising the issue of whether Palestinians would agree to recognize Israel as a Jewish state, Breitbart reported.

"I think it's a mistake for some people to be, you know, raising it again and again as the critical decider of their attitude towards the possibility of a state and peace, and we've obviously made that clear," he said when asked to state the Obama administration's official position on the matter, as quoted in the report.

Kerry added that the issue was resolved in 1947, referring to UN Resolution 181 that divided Palestine into two states, one for Jews and one for Arabs, and reminded of former PLO Chairman Yasser Arafat's recognition of Israel's right to exist as a Jewish state in 1988.

According to the report, State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki said last week that the U.S. considers Israel as a Jewish state, but doesn't require the Palestinians to do so.

Kerry adopted Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's demand that Israel be recognized as a Jewish state back in December during a visit to Israel, and later turned to the Saudis and Jordan asking them to support Palestinian recognition.
Last week, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas made it clear there was "no way" he would recognize Israel as a Jewish state, and later the Arab League came out in support of his statement.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry.Credit: AP