The State Department backs U.S. Ambassador to Israel Daniel Shapiro after he said Israel applies law in the West Bank differently to Palestinians and Israelis. Netanyahu has described Shapiro’s comments as unacceptable and wrong.
Shapiro was also publicly lambasted on Israeli television on Tuesday by a former aide to Netanyahu who used the deeply offensive Hebrew word "yehudo" – which translates as “little Jew boy” – to disparage the ambassador.
US State Department spokesman John Kirby said: "“Our long-standing position on settlements is clear. We view Israeli settlements activity as illegitimate and counterproductive to the cause of peace...."