Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Netanyahu at J'lem Conference: Jerusalem is and will remain the Capital of the Jewish people

(Ynet, INN).Benjamin Netanyahu stated Wednesday evening that the murderers of Minister Rehavam Ze'evi, including Ahmad Sa'adat, will not be released as long as he is prime minister. He made the remark while addressing the International Jerusalem Conference at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, where Ze'evi was murdered about eight years ago.

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Netanyahu promised to speak about Jerusalem. "I've noticed that at the Herzliya Conference people don't talk about Herzilya, and at the Caesarea Conference people don’t talk about Caesarea, but at the Jerusalem Conference I will talk about Jerusalem.

"Jerusalem is the capital of Israel, is the capital of the Jewish people, it is one and this is the way it will remain. The Zionist vision rebuilt Jerusalem, but it also built Tel Aviv and our entire renewed country. And the yearning to Jerusalem brought the waves of aliyah from Yemen, Morocco, Russia, Poland and Ethiopia. Jerusalem has been our capital for 3,000 years and is has never been the capital of any other people. The immigrants from Ethiopia came by foot and lost their family members while uttering the word 'Jerusalem.'"

As for his vision regarding Jerusalem's future, he said, "There is coexistence here. Not everything is rosy in Jerusalem. There are things to do to nurture the eastern part of the city and more should be done. I definitely support the tendency to improve the infrastructure for residents in east Jerusalem, because it's our responsibility.

"In Jerusalem there is freedom of movement and ritual, and this didn't exist before. We want to deepen the coexistence in Jerusalem. This is only possible as long as Jerusalem is not divided and does not deteriorate into a place used for a violent struggle and terrorism. This may be a distant vision, but it's possible."

Netanyahu went on to address the Iranian threat. "Radical Islam, which is led by Tehran, undermines the very existence of the State of Israel. But this threat is not on us, but on the entire world. This is a threat on world peace. The arms race threatens us, naturally, but it threatens the entire world as well.

"There are leaders in the Middle East who say that if Iran arms itself with nuclear weapons, we will arm ourselves too, and if there is a nuclear race – who knows how it will end. A year ago we asked whether Iran was headed to armament. Today there is no argument that Iran is moving forward."

He said that additional sanctions must be imposed on Iran, and also said which sanctions should be imposed. "It's late and serious sanctions are needed. Sanctions in the energy field. Serious sanctions, including sanctions against the import of oil distillates. Shallow sanctions will not do the work.

"I hope the international community understands the historic moment in which other countries in the world, who have understood the rise in danger, are doing the required thing. When I spoke about the Iranian threat 14 years ago, I said that the biggest threat facing humanity was Iran's attempt to acquire nuclear weapons. Many eyebrows were raised at the time."