National Security Adviser John Bolton said at a press briefing Wednesday that "it's accurate" to refer to Palestine as a "so-called state."

Bolton made the remark - also using air quotes when he said Palestine - while answering a question about the president's goal of achieving a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

He was then pressed by a reporter on whether the language would be "productive" to achieving a two-state solution. 


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"It's accurate. ... It's not a state now," he said, explaining the Palestinian territories do not meet the "customary international law test of statehood."

Bolton said Palestine could become a state, as President Trump has said, but not until after negotiations with Israel. 

President Trump met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu last week on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly, saying he "likes the two-state solution."

"That’s what I think works best. I don’t even have to speak to anybody, that’s my feeling," he said. 

Netanyahu, however, refused to back Trump's view in an interview after the meeting, saying he prefers to discuss "substance" and not "labels."

Watch the exchange above.


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