Ivanka Trump and her husband Jared Kushner were reportedly blessed by Israel‘s Chief Rabbi, who once compared black people to “monkeys” and previously suggested that Israel should be free of non-Jews.
The pair were pictured speaking to Yitzhak Yosef, ahead of the opening of the new US embassy in Jerusalem. Jacob Kornbluh, a Jewish Insider reporter suggested they had received “a blessing” from the senior cleric.
Rabbi Yosef was criticised after he used the word “monkey” to describe a black person.
In footage aired by the Ynet news website, he also used the term “kushi” to describe black people. Although the term was originally used in the bible, today it is generally considered to be a derogatory word when referring to Ethiopian Jews.
His use of the word was were deemed “racially charged” and “utterly unacceptable” by the Anti-Defamation League.
The rabbi’s office said he was quoting a passage from the Talmud – the primary source of Jewish religious law and theology.
Rabbi Yosef also caused controversy when he suggested non-Jews should not live in Israel if they do not follow the rulers of Judaism.
“According to Jewish law, gentiles should not live in the Land of Israel,” he was quoted as saying by The Times of Israel. “If a gentile does not agree to take on the seven Noahide Laws, we should send him to Saudi Arabia.”
He caused further controversy with comments which compared women who dress “immodestly” to animals.
Donald Trump’s daughter and son-in-law travelled to Israel for a ceremony to open the US embassy in Jerusalem, which coincides with the 70th anniversary of Israel.
It will move from its former home in Tel Aviv, following Donald Trump’s decision last year to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, breaking with decades of US neutrality on the issue and putting it at odds with most of the international community.
Palestinians oppose this recognition as they claim the eastern part but Israel says it will never divide the city.
She added: “I am honoured to join you & the US Delegation in commemorating the dedication of our new @usembassyjlm & celebrating the friendship between our two countries. #USEmbassyJerusalem”