Israel PM Naftali Bennett accuses CNN's Christiane Amanpour of settler violence 'lie'

Israel PM Naftali Bennett accuses CNN's Christiane Amanpour of settler violence 'lie'
2 min read
22 April, 2022
Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett bridled CNN anchor Christiane Amanpour's questions on Israeli settler violence in the occupied West Bank.
Israeli PM Naftali Bennett had a heated exchange with journalist Christiane Amanpour in a CNN interview [Getty]

Israel’s Prime Minister Naftali Bennett branded veteran CNN anchor Christiane Amanpour of telling a "lie" when she pressed him on Israeli settler violence in the occupied West Bank earlier this week.

Amanpour pressed Bennett on a quote by Israeli army General Yehuda Fuchs, who expressed concerns over what he called "settler terrorism" in a February interview with The New York Times.

"The West Bank has been occupied since 1967, settlers are allowed to be there," Amanpour continued. "It is a minority, I know that, but they are there and they are violent, this minority."

"What you’ve been projecting is blatantly false," Bennett replied. "It’s a lie, simply a lie."

He then alleged that "it is Palestinians who murder Israelis", and not the other way around.

Bennett also claimed the West Bank is "not an occupied territory" but a "territory in dispute". The international community broadly considers the West Bank as occupied Palestinian land.

Perspectives

Amanpour asked Bennett why Israeli forces are allowed to raid the Al-Aqsa compound, following recent attacks on Palestinian worshippers inside the mosque - the third holiest site in Islam.

"There you go again, starting the story in the middle," Bennett said.

Israeli security forces and settlers have raided the Al-Aqsa Mosque on multiple occasions since the beginning of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, injuring hundreds of Palestinians.

Israel, which has occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank militarily since 1967, is de facto in control of security at the complex, which is under Jordanian guardianship.

Palestinians are routinely banned from entering Al-Aqsa Mosque, while far-right Israeli activists and settlers are allowed to march and attack Palestinians in occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank, often without consequences.