While Israelis praise Biden, some Palestinians protest against his visit.

Palestinians demonstrated in Jerusalem and Bethlehem on Friday against President Biden’s visit as he meets with Palestinian leader Mahmo...


Palestinians demonstrated in Jerusalem and Bethlehem on Friday against President Biden’s visit as he meets with Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas amid widespread frustration over US support for Israel and the policies of the Biden administration. towards the Palestinians.

On the eve of its visit to Bethlehem, the Biden administration announced hundreds of millions of dollars in new funding for Palestinian services and said Israel had agreed to roll out 4G phone reception in Palestinian-run areas in West Bank.

The funding was welcomed by some Palestinian officials, who said it would help revive Palestinian hospitals, in particular. But for some Palestinian protesters, these were piecemeal gestures that did little to advance the prospect of Palestinian statehood.

“They left everything else,” said Suhaib Zahda, a political activist in Nablus, West Bank, “to ask for 4G?

Palestinians have long questioned Washington’s ability to neutrally mediate the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, citing strong US support for Israel at the United Nations and the extent of US financial and military support for Israel, which has received more American aid than any other country in the world. Second war.

Some Palestinians originally seen Mr. Biden’s presidency as a welcome relief from the Trump administration. But many now view the Biden administration as a disappointment because of its failure to reverse several Trump-era policies.

On Thursday, Mr Biden reaffirmed his support for the establishment of a Palestinian state, calling for a “lasting negotiated peace between the State of Israel and the Palestinian people”, and underlining his support for a two-state solution to the conflict. .

But following Israeli opposition, his administration did not reopen the US consulate to Palestinians in Jerusalem or the Palestinian mission in Washington, both of which were closed under Mr. Trump. Nor did he formally reverse the Trump administration’s legitimization of Israeli settlements in the West Bank, which are considered illegal by most of the world.

Mr Zahda, the Nablus political activist, said Mr Biden’s visit to Bethlehem was a largely empty gesture. “The Palestinians see the United States as a partner in the occupation, whether funding it or supporting Israel politically,” said Zahda, 39.

Palestinian criticism of the Biden administration grew up recently after the assassination in May of an American-Palestinian journalist, Shireen Abu Akleh, in the West Bank. A United States government investigation revealed that Ms. Abu Akleh was probably killed by Israeli firebut officials said Washington would not push Israel to pursue a criminal investigation of an Israeli soldier.

Diala Ayesh, a Palestinian lawyer and protest organizer in Ramallah, said many young Palestinians no longer had hope in any US administration.

“We obviously don’t demand or expect anything from him,” Ms Ayesh, 26, said of Mr Biden. “We had hoped that Abbas would reject the meeting all together and save us and himself from humiliation.”

As his convoy crossed the West Bank on Friday, the president passed large banners that read: “Mr. President, this is apartheid.

The term, which refers to the racist legal system that governed South Africa until the early 1990s, is an explosive charge in the debate on the treatment of the Palestinians by Israel. A small but growing number of Israeli and international watchdog bodies accuse Israel of practicing a form of apartheid, echoing claims Palestinians have made since at least the 1960s; the Israeli government condemns it as baseless libel.

The billboards were installed on Wednesday by the Israeli rights group B’Tselem – which began applying the term to Israeli politics last year – in several locations around Ramallah and Bethlehem.

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Newsrust - US Top News: While Israelis praise Biden, some Palestinians protest against his visit.
While Israelis praise Biden, some Palestinians protest against his visit.
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