Washington, DC –
U.S. Senator Benjamin L. Cardin (D-MD), a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, released the following statement in response to Israel’s announcement last week, during a visit of Vice President Biden, of plans to expand Ramat Shlomo neighborhood in East Jerusalem.
“There is no excuse for Israel’s announcement of plans to expand housing units in East Jerusalem when Vice President Biden was on the ground meeting with the highest levels of the Israeli government. While the Vice President was on a mission to restart the peace process, such an announcement was a mistake.
“This incident does not diminish the fact that Israel is a critical ally of the United States and our bond runs deep, based on mutually important values and respect. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s quick expression of regret is a positive step forward and recognition of our continuing strong relationship. It is important for friends to have an open dialogue.”