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article imageJohn Kerry expresses regret over Israel 'apartheid' comment

By Paul Iddon     Apr 29, 2014 in Politics
U.S Secretary of State John Kerry has said that he regrets using the word "apartheid" when discussing the Israeli-Palestinian situation. He said that if he could "rewind the tape" he "would have chosen a different word."
The Washington Times quotes him declaring that, "I will not allow my commitment to Israel to be questioned by anyone, particularly for partisan, political purposes, so I want to be crystal clear about what I believe and what I don't believe."
He went on to confirm that he doesn't believe that Israel is an apartheid state or has any intentions of becoming one.
A recording of Mr. Kerry discussing the two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict was released to the public whereby he can be heard saying that such a solution is the only solution to the conflict. He then added, and this was where the controversy stems from, that, "Because a unitary state winds up either being an apartheid state with second-class citizens – or ends up being a state that destroys the capacity of Israel to be a Jewish state."
He now says that, "If I could rewind the tape, I would have chosen a different word to describe my firm belief that the only way in the long term to have a Jewish state and two nations living side by side in peace and security is through a two state solution."
The Guardian also writes that Kerry condemned what he called "partisan political" attacks which followed the controversy. Republic senator Ted Cruz of Texas even suggested that Mr. Kerry should resign over that comment.
However the criticisms weren't just partisan. One Democratic senator, Barbara Boxer of California, strongly criticized the remarks Kerry made by saying on her Twitter page that,
"Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East and any linkage between Israel and apartheid is nonsensical and ridiculous."
Kerry's controversial words come at a very delicate time in his attempts to foster a peace process which has now been frozen by Israel following the Fatah-controlled Palestinian Authority's recent reconciliation with the Hamas organization and their plans to establish a unity Palestinian government in the coming weeks.
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