Republican leader pledges US Israel support

John Boehner

John Boehner

One of the most powerful members of the Republican opposition has vowed that the United States will stand by Israel.

John Boehner, who became Speaker of the House of Representatives after the Republican Party won a majority at the mid-term elections last November, made the promise during a meeting with the Israeli ambassador to Washington, Michael Oren.

Mr Boehner, who has emerged as a vocal opponent to President Obama and the Democrats in recent years, said: “Israel is one of America’s strongest allies. We share common values, and fight common enemies in the form of violent extremism.

“The people of Israel have sacrificed for the sake of peace and stability. With change coming rapidly to the Middle East, the US is committed to standing by our close ally to maintain peace and stability in the region."

Mr Oren welcomed the remarks as “especially valued at this time of change in the Middle East, and as Israel continues to confront the threats of terror and Iranian nuclearisation.”

Mr Boehner’s comments followed visits to Israel by three high-profile Republicans expected to run for the presidency next year, including former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee and former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney.

Last updated: 11:29am, February 18 2011