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US condemns PA official who denies Jewish historical connection to Israel

"The Palestinian Authority Deputy Minister of Information, Al-Mutawakkil Taha, has published a 50-page study in which he casts doubt on the Jews' honoring of this pilgrimage site as a wall belonging to a complex of Jewish Temples which was destroyed several hundred years ago. Spokesman for the American State Department, P.J. Crowley, told journalists: 'We strongly condemn these statements and reject them out of hand, since they are factually mistaken, do not take into consideration the feelings of others, and are extremely provocative.'
He added, 'Time after time, we have raised with the PA leaders the need to combat all forms of de-legitimization of Israel, including denial of the historical connection of the Jews to the land.'
The article was removed from the Internet site of the Palestinian Ministry of Information following American protests, as noted by the Ministry. The article, signed by Al-Mutawakkil Taha, published on Nov. 22 on the Ministry of Information website, was removed yesterday.
Taha told Agence France Presse: 'I do not know who removed it.' He emphasized that he was not behind the publication of the article on the site, and added: 'This article reflects my opinion, not the position of the Ministry of Information or the Palestinian Authority.'"