Monday, July 30, 2012

UK: Middle East news agencies react to Romney's statements


Romney's Israel visit divides regional media

Mitt Romney waves at a camera by the Wailing wall  
Mitt Romney said the US had a "moral imperative" to stop Iran from developing nuclear weapons
Newspapers in the Middle East disagree on whose interests were best served by the visit to Israel by the Republican US presidential candidate, Mitt Romney.

Israeli press

Boaz Bismuth in the free daily newspaper Israel Hayom is pleased with the way the visit went. Noting that "the road to the White House passes through Jerusalem", he approves of remarks in which Mr Romney's senior foreign policy advisor, Dan Senor, said the Republican candidate would respect an Israeli decision to act against Iran should the need arise. "An Israeli prime minister could not have put it better," he writes.

Arab press

Writing in the Ramallah-based, pro-Fatah Palestinian newspaper al-Ayyam, Adil Abdul Rahman sees nothing good in the fact that "the US-pilgrimage-to-Israel season has started". "It shows to everyone that the Israeli issue is in fact a domestic one and the United States can never compromise over it," he writes. Despite vital US interests in Arab countries, "neither US administrations nor candidates are interested in the interests of the Arabs and Palestinians", he laments.

An editorial in the pan-Arab newspaper, al-Quds al-Arabi, is dismayed by Mitt Romney's comments on Iran. "Romney will win the largest number of Jewish votes after getting close to Israeli leaders by yielding to their script, but the biggest loser will be the American people and the people of the region if he wins and implements his promises to attack Iran," the paper says.

An editorial in Qatar's al-Rayah agrees that remarks made by the Republican candidate during his visit are "detrimental to the interests of the United States and also detrimental to peace, security and stability in the region". "Seeking to win the White House should not be at the expense of the Palestinian people and their national rights or peace in the region," it argues.

Iranian media 

In the press, the moderate paper Mardom Salari reports Mitt Romney's visit to Israel under the headline "Republican cowboy's efforts for a few more dollars".

For other regional reactions and the rest of the story:

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