Prominent members of the Republican Party slammed US President Barack Obama's Mideast policy speech, saying it was "dangerous," and accusing the president of undermining the sensitive and delicate negotiations for Middle East peace with his outline for resumed talks between Israelis and Palestinians.
Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney said Obama "threw Israel under the bus" in his Mideast policy speech, and handed the Palestinians a victory even before negotiations between the parties could resume.
Romney, who is seeking the Republican presidential nomination, added that Obama "has disrespected Israel and undermined its ability to negotiate peace. He has also violated a first principle of American foreign policy, which is to stand firm by our friends."
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich called the address "the most dangerous speech ever made by an American president for the survival of Israel."
Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman added that Obama undercut an opportunity for Israelis and Palestinians to build trust.
Republican presidential hopeful Rick Santorum said Obama call for renewed peace talks reflected the administration's "confused and dangerous foreign policy," especially considering the Palestinian Authority's new alliance.
"The current Administration needs to come to terms with its confused and dangerous foreign policy soon, as clarity and security are the necessary conditions of any serious and coherent American set of policies," he said.
Meanwhile, UN envoy to the Middle East Robert Serry said that a "new and meaningful peace initiative" must be formulated by September to reignite the Israeli-Palestinian peace process.
AP contributed to this report
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