A CNN contributor has found himself in hot water after mentioning Palestine, the Jordan River, and the Mediterranean Sea.
Rabat – CNN fired Marc Lamont Hill on Thursday after he gave a speech in the United Nations in which he called for “a free Palestine from the river to the sea.”
In his speech on Wednesday, Hill, a professor of media studies at Temple University, expressed his support for Palestinians and invited countries to boycott Israel.
Hill’s speech for the UN’s International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People received sharp criticism and Israeli groups considered it a call for the annihilation of Israel.
Israeli officials and Jewish organizations condemned the speech, called CNN to stop inviting Hill to its studios, pressuring the network to dismiss him.
The Anti Defamation League (ADL) said, “Those calling for ‘from the river to the sea’ are calling for an end to the State of Israel.”
The ADL added that the phrase “the river to the sea” is used by Hamas and anti-Israel groups.
The ADL’s senior vice president for international affairs, Sharon Nazarian, said in a statement that the annual event at the UN “promotes divisiveness and hate.”
The CNN contributor took to his Twitter account to defend himself and reply to critics.
“My reference to ‘river to the sea’ was not a call to destroy anything or anyone,” he tweeted. “It was a call for justice, both in Israel and in the West Bank/Gaza.
My reference to “river to the sea” was not a call to destroy anything or anyone. It was a call for justice, both in Israel and in the West Bank/Gaza. The speech very clearly and specifically said those things. No amount of debate will change what I actually said or what I meant.
— Marc Lamont Hill (@marclamonthill) 29 novembre 2018