Jared Kushner, former President Donald Trump’s senior advisor and son-in-law, claimed on Sunday that American Jews are “safer” in Saudi Arabia than on US college campuses.
“One of the ironies is that as an American Jew, you’re safer in Saudi Arabia right now than you are at a college campus like Columbia University,” Kushner told Fox News host Maria Bartiromo.
Israel and Palestinian militant group, Hamas, are engaged in a deadly conflict following Hamas’ attack on Israel earlier this month that left 1400 Israeli civilians and military members dead. Israel responded with a series of air strikes that killed more than 8000 Palestinian so far, according to the Associated Press.
The conflict has resulted in a number of pro-Palestinian protests taking place at various college campuses in the U.S., including Columbia. Recently, billionaire hedge fund founder and Columbia University alum Leon Cooperman said he will no longer donate to the school because of the pro-Palestinian protests that took place there.
On Sunday Kushner, who recently returned from a trip to Saudi Arabia, told Bartiromo that “it was a very interesting time to be over there.”
“I spoke at the conference. They allowed me to speak freely, and what I sensed there was that there is obviously a very big discussion of what would happen with the tremendous terrorist attack perpetrated by Hamas,” Kushner added. “The people of Saudi Arabia have a lot of care for the Palestinian civilians, and so they would like to see Israel accomplish the mission, to make sure Hamas could be eliminated.”
Six months after leaving the White House Kushner secured a $2 billion investment from a fund led by the Saudi crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman, despite concerns within the kingdom about Kushner’s inexperience.
The move raises questions about whether the Saudis may have influenced the Trump administration’s policies during their one term in the White House.