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Canadian PM says Israel's Jewish identity is non-negotiable

Canada's Prime Minister Stephen Harper has said that "recognising Israel's right to exist as a Jewish state is absolute and non-negotiable". The right-wing politician's comments came during his speech at the Israeli Knesset on Monday during a special parliamentary session held in his honour.

Harper said that he rejects "absolutely" attempts by international bodies to describe Israel as an "apartheid state". He claimed that such attempts are part of the modern day disease of anti-Semitism."

Commentators in Canada and London are already asking what hold the pro-Israel Lobby in Canada has over the prime minister. "He is either very ignorant or simply ignoring the evidence to the contrary before his, and everyone else's, eyes," said one.

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