Sunday, November 29, 2009

PM Netanyahu: Now clear to all we want peace, Palestinians unwilling

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said at the Eilat Conference for Journalism that it is now clear to every objective observer that Israel wants peace. He noted, however, that he does not see the same willingness or determination on the Palestinian side.

The prime minister addressed the cabinet's decision to freeze the construction in settlements for 10 months. "I think that today it is clear to anyone who checks the facts that Israel wants peace. It wants to enter a peace process," he stated.

"I don’t see the same willingness, the same determination, on the Palestinian side yet. I see other signs. I see all kinds of preconditions for talks from the very first moment. I see them turning to the International Criminal Court or to the UN institutions in a bid to promote the absurd thing known as the Goldstone Report."

He called on the Palestinians to help startup the peace process. "Eventually, the agreement or arrangement will be difficult, it will require courage from leaders, and we won't be satisfied, but neither will the other side. It's as clear as daylight. It requires rising above, it requires largely abandoning tactical moves. We are heading to a move. To this moment it's unclear to me whether the Palestinian Authority and its leader are ready to enter this move.

"The people of Israel and the Palestinians themselves," Netanyahu explained, "are tired of the ongoing war and would like to reach a peace agreement. I hope the Palestinians do what is best for peace, and I'm telling you, what is best for them too. Because the alternative not to do it, not to advance a diplomatic process, will only benefit Hamas and its sponsor Iran and their different allies."