Sunday, January 16, 2011

Netanyahu: In unstable region Israel cautious with PA to achieve, maintain peace with security

The civil unrest which resulted in the ousting of Tunisia's long-time president displays an instability prevalent in the entire Middle East, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Sunday, adding that the situation highlighted the need for security assurances in a future Mideast peace deal.

Speaking during the cabinet's weekly meeting in Jerusalem, Netanyahu said that recent turmoil in Tunisia was an example of "how unstable Israel's region is":

"One of our goals is to achieve peace and security with our neighbors in the region. The region in which we live is unstable. Everyone sees this today. We see this at several points throughout the Middle East. I would say that there is a great island of instability in the geographic expanse in which we live. We hope that stability will be restored. We hope that there will be quiet and security. We are monitoring developments. If there is one
conclusion, one clear lesson that arises from all that we see around us, it is that we need to lay the foundations of security in any agreement that we make. We cannot simply say 'We are signing a peace agreement', close our eyes and say 'We did it' because we do not know with any clarity that the peace will indeed be honored. We would increase any agreement's chances of being honored by including within it stable and solid security arrangements.

But there is another reason why we insist on peace agreements with a very strong security infrastructure and this is because peace can unravel. It could be that there are regime, and other, changes that may not be expected today, but which could happen tomorrow. Therefore, this Government's policy is to bind peace and security together because security ensures peace and protects the state of Israel should it unravel".