Two senior Congressmen have sent Palestinian Authoritya letter complaining about his awarding a press award to former White House columnist Helen Thomas, an Israeli newspaper reported Wednesday.
Israel's Haaretz daily reported that, chairman of the Middle East and South Asia Subcommittee, and , senior member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, expressed concern over the award.
Last year, the letter said, "the Committee on Foreign Affairs adopted an amendment entitled the Preparing the Palestinian People for Peace Act. This legislation conditioned U.S. assistance on whether the P.A. was actively preparing its people for peace through compromise with messages of tolerance, understanding, and reconciliation."
But they argued that "Thomas' words and beliefs have been anything but supportive of a settlement where two peoples, Israelis and Palestinians, would live side-by-side, in peace and security."
On April,4th , the Palestinian Authority decided to recognize the former White House correspondent Helen Thomas, for her longtime journalism career “during which she defended the Palestinian position every step of the way.”
On behalf of Mahmoud Abbas,Executive Committee member Hanan Ashrawi bestowed the prize upon Helen Thomas at a ceremony attended by diplomats, journalists, human rights activists and U.S. Arab leaders. The event was held at the home of Maen Areikat, the Palestinian envoy to Washington.
For his part, Israeli envoy to Washingtonwrote on his Facebook page, “I was appalled by the award ceremony given by the PLO delegation in Washington to Helen Thomas, who has been completely shunned by all decent Americans after making anti-Semitic remarks, along with teaching Palestinian children to hate the Jewish state and to glorify suicide bombers," Israeli media reported.
In a recent interview, Thomas was caught on camera saying that Israelis should "get the hell out of Palestine" and suggested they go to Germany, Poland or the U.S.
White House spokesmansaid after her interview that Thomas’ comments were “offensive and reprehensible”.