US Presidency forgets Palestine, says ambassador


A change of US presidency is unlikely to improve Palestinian relations, according to the Palestinian ambassador to Ireland.

“What we notice in the campaign now is the candidates compete in their support of Israel,” said Ahmad Abdelrazek, speaking at an event for DCU’s International Relations Society.

A Bloomberg poll in April showed that two-thirds of Americans sympathise with Israeli president, Benjamin Netanyahu.

With Republican candidates endorsing their support for Israel, 27 per cent of ‘high-intensity’ Republicans who were surveyed preferred indefinite occupation of Palestine.

He also criticised Democratic President Barack Obama’s lack of effort in aiding Palestinian and Israeli relations: “When Obama came into power, he promised to establish peace. He has done nothing.

“Israel is an American policeman in the region.”

Abdelrazek noted on Wednesday that the US gave financial aid to Israel during the 2014 Gaza conflict in which Palestine in which 1, 617 Palestinians died compared to five Israelis.

He called on the International Criminal Court (ICC) to bring the Israeli government to justice for war crimes committed during summer of 2014.

“They need to act like a democratic country, if they are going to present themselves like that.”

In the midst of international support for Israel, Abdelrazek expressed gratitude for Ireland’s support for flying the Palestinian flag in the UN and the boycott of Israeli goods.

He said Ireland preserved through “pressure from other countries not to show support.”

Although unrelated, the DCU Islamic Society (ISOC)  fund raised in the Henry Grattan the same day to build a school in Gaza.

“We’re raising money for Human Appeal, an international organisation that’s also based in Ireland, said ISOC member Sayf Ul-Haque.

“We hosted a games night on Tuesday and we’re hosting a henna night on Wednesday with henna tattoos, tea and a quiz with prizes.”

Ul-Haque and other students also sold cotton candy and traditional food in the Henry Grattan during Abdelrazek’s talk. ISOC reached their goal of €1,000 on Friday which will go to the construction of a primary school.

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<strong> Aura McMenamin </strong>

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