Washington (AP) – The Obama administration is strongly condemning a Palestinian official’s claim that the Western Wall in the Old City of Jerusalem has no religious significance for Jews and is actually Muslim property.
The State Department said Tuesday that the U.S. rejects the comments as “factually incorrect, insensitive and highly provocative.” Spokesman P.J. Crowley said statements of that kind damage U.S. efforts to revive stalled Israeli-Palestinian peace talks and could incite violence. He said neither side should do anything to prejudice the negotiations.
Last week, a senior Palestinian official endorsed a study stating that the Western Wall, the holiest site where Jews can pray, is Muslim property and has no link to Judaism. The study has drawn fierce criticism in Israel.