Over the past few weeks, Israeli air-strikes against members of Palestine’s Hamas group have left hundreds dead in the highly contentious Gaza region of Palestine. Now, in an exclusive interview with HipHopWired, rapper and Israeli citizen Shyne weighs in on the violent conflict.

Shyne began by sending his prayers to people of both countries, saying that his Jewish religion doesn’t make him biased against Palestine in any way. According to the Belize-born emcee, it’s important to look at the actions of both Hamas and the Israeli Defense Forces with an impartial eye. At the end of the day, he hopes that the two states can come to some sort of a peaceful resolution.

“That’s a very complicated situation – obviously my prayers and my thoughts [go to] everybody involved, not just the Israelites,” he said. “I’m impartial when it comes to justice, when it comes to human rights. I’m moderate. We have to be pragmatic, and the pragmatism is if Hamas – who, according to the United State of America, is a terrorist organization – if they’re shooting rockets into Israeli territory, how you gon’ deal with that?…Israel has always been occupied. Before 1948 it was the British that were occupying Israel, before that it was Jordan, before that it was the Turks, before that it was the Mamluks [sic]…it was already somebody occupying Israel [but] when the U.N. decided to divide Israel, everything got complicated.”

He concluded, “The solution is two states, the solution is West Bank and Gaza, and wherever else, going to the Palestinians and letting them have their state and their sovereignty, and hopefully they can prosper…I think it’s in the Palestinians best interest to elect leaders that want peace and [will] work hard to get a two-state solution, and as well as on the Israeli side. It’s in the Israelis’ interest to make sure that their leaders are wholeheartedly negotiating to bring about a Palestinian state, not a terrorist state.”

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