Sunday, March 6, 2011

Netanyahu: Palestinians making excuses to avoid talks; World conditioned to back Palestinians

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday met with Chilean President Sebastian Piñera in Jerusalem to discuss developments in peace talks with the Palestinians.

Responding to Piñera's call on Netanyahu "not to miss the opportunity for peace," Netanyahu told reporters:
"We are prepared to sit down and negotiate peace. And the Palestinians have found a variety of excuses not to do so."
"Whereas Israel and I have been willing to move on this road, I've not seen the parallel willingness to do the same [by the Palestinians]. Because they're relying on a Pavlovian reflex of the international community, Basically they say, we don't have to negotiate, we can sit back, we can teach our children to idolize mass killers – they named a public square in Ramallah ten minutes from here, for a terrorist who murdered 400 innocent Israelis. They can do that and get away with it."
Chile is one of a number of South American countries that have recognized a Palestinian state on the 1967 lines.
"We've been calling for direct negotiations from day one of this government:

On day one we called for direct negotiations.

On day two, I made a speech in Bar Ilan University calling for two states for two peoples.

On day three we removed about 400 checkpoints, earth barriers, and other things to facilitate the growth of the Palestinian economy.

On day four, we agreed to a ten month moratorium on new construction in the settlements, something that no government did for 18 years before that.

On day 5 we agreed to an extension of that moratorium by three months.

Unfortunately, everything that we did, these five things, were met with no response by the Palestinian Authority. They just placed preconditions and terms, every way to avoid sitting down and discussing peace. They tried to go around the peace negotiations.

I'll tell you why, because peace is hard. It's been hard for me. It will be hard. You have to make concessions and you have to look at the people in the eye and tell them not everything that we'd hoped for would be possible; there have to be compromises on both sides.

But whereas Israel and I have been willing to move on this road, I've not seen the parallel willingness to do the same.

Israel is prepared to begin this negotiation. Israel is prepared to end this negotiation".
Netanyahu also urged Piñera to work with Israel in exerting pressure on Iran, which the prime minister said would be "immune to all pressures of democratization; will continue to butcher its people...and will continue to propel instability to the rest of the world."

Piñera responded that "we share our vision that the peace-loving countries of the world should not allow Iran to become a nuclear power, because that will be a big problem and danger and threat not only for the Middle East, but for the whole world."