"Palestine" is a borrowed term, MK Anat Berko (Likud) said in the Knesset Wednesday, sparking an uproar.

"Palestine - There isn't even a 'p' in Arabic, so it's a borrowed term that's worth analyzing," Berko said in a debate on the two-state solution. "But there is a Palestinian Authority next to us; we don't deny it."

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"Are you for real?" MK Tamar Zandberg (Meretz) asked.


Several MKs from Meretz and the Joint List shouted at Berko.

Berko repeated several times: "There is no puh sound!"

"The source of the name is clear," she said, referring to the Romans, who called the area Palestina.


In Arabic, Palestine is pronounced Falesteen.

Berko, an professor of criminology whose area of expertise is suicide bombings, said Israel can have a peace process, "but it can't be suicide," calling to "hermetically close Israel's borders to keep out radical Islam."

She accused Balad MKs of wanting the establishment "greater Palestine," that would include all of Israel.

"There are attempts by some, MKs too, to lead the state into chaos and bring in subversive forces to light a fire between Jews and Arabs in Israel, and that is a bad attempt," Berko stated.