“Republican White House hopeful Newt Gingrich has stirred controversy by calling the Palestinians an "invented" people who could have chosen to live elsewhere.
The former House of Representatives speaker, who is the frontrunner for the Republican nomination for the 2012 presidential race, made the remarks in an interview with the US Jewish Channel broadcaster released on Friday.
Asked whether he considers himself a Zionist, he answered: "I believe that the Jewish people have the right to a state ... Remember, there was no Palestine as a state. It was part of the Ottoman Empire" until the early 20th century,
"I think that we've had an invented Palestinian people who are in fact Arabs, and who were historically part of the Arab
"And they had a chance to go many places, and for a variety of political reasons we have sustained this war against Israel now since the 1940s, and it's tragic."
He said Obama's effort to treat the Palestinians the same as the Israelis is actually "favouring the terrorists".”