Secret footage of Mitt Romney was released on Tuesday in which he describes the Palestinians as “committed to the destruction and elimination of Israel”.
The film, posted on the website of the left-leaning US magazine Mother Jones, showed Mr Romney speaking at a $50,000-a-plate private fundraiser in Florida in May.
When asked by one donor how the “Palestinian problem” could be solved, Mr Romney gave a lengthy reply, stating that: “The Palestinians have no interest whatsoever in establishing peace, and… the pathway to peace is almost unthinkable to accomplish.”
This is contrary to the official position of the Republican Party, which backs a two-state solution. Its 2012 platform says: “The US seeks a comprehensive and lasting peace in the Middle East, negotiated between the parties themselves with the assistance of the US.”
At the fundraiser, the presidential candidate said he was resigned that the situation between the two countries “is going to remain an unsolved problem”.
During the speech, Mr Romney incorrectly named Syria as a country bordering the West Bank.