The administration of US Presidential candidate Joe Biden will reverse a number of President Donald Trump’s controversial policies on Palestine and the broader Middle East, according to Kamala Harris. The Democratic Party candidate for vice president made numerous pledges in an interview over the weekend with the Arab American News.
Responding to a question about US foreign policy in Palestine and the broader Middle East, Harris said: “Joe and I also believe in the worth and value of every Palestinian and every Israeli and we will work to ensure that Palestinians and Israelis enjoy equal measures of freedom, security, prosperity and democracy.”
Signalling a major shift from the Trump era, which saw the US depart from its traditional position to side with the ultra-right anti-Palestinian government of Benjamin Netanyahu, Harris added: “We are committed to a two-state solution, and we will oppose any unilateral steps that undermine that goal. We will also oppose annexation and settlement expansion.”
Harris also pledged to reverse Trump’s decision to defund organisations delivering critical relief and aid to the Palestinians. “Will take immediate steps to restore economic and humanitarian assistance to the Palestinian people, address the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Gaza, reopen the U.S. consulate in East Jerusalem and work to reopen the PLO mission in Washington”.
Speaking about the broader Middle East, Harris said that in Syria a Biden-led administration “will once again stand with civil society and pro-democracy partners in Syria, and help advance a political settlement where the Syrian people have a voice”.
In comments that are likely to cause deep anxiety in Saudi Arabia, Harris stated that the US will not stand by and watch Riyadh wreak havoc in the region. “Instead of standing by as the government of Saudi Arabia pursues disastrous, dangerous policies, including the ongoing war in Yemen, we will reassess the U.S. relationship with Saudi Arabia and end support for the Saudi-led war in Yemen,” said Harris.
Harris also commented on Trump’s highly controversial Muslim ban. “Discrimination and bigotry will have no place in a Biden-Harris administration,” she added. “On our first day in office, Joe and I will rescind the un-American Muslim travel and refugee bans and make America, once again, a welcoming destination for immigrants and refugees, including by raising the refugee admissions cap.”