Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Israel must maintain full military control over Judea and Samaria in the event of a final peace agreement with the Palestinians.
“The idea that we can give up territory and achieve peace is not right,” Netanyahu told Army Radio, adding, “In order to assure our existence we need to have military and security control over all of the territory west of the Jordan [River].”
Netanyahu’s comments came as politicians within his governing coalition sought clarification on his position regarding a two-state solution, following the prime minister’s statement Monday that President Donald Trump is determined to secure a peace deal.
Jason Greenblatt, Trump’s international negotiations representative, last week embarked on a secretive tour of an area in northern Samaria that was evacuated in 2005 as part of the Israeli government’s unilateral disengagement from Gaza as well as four communities in Judea and Samaria.
Greenblatt’s low-profile tour occurred amid speculation that the Trump administration is weighing the possibility of asking Israel to move lands from Israeli-administered Area C to Area B, which falls under Palestinian civil control and joint Israeli-Palestinian security control in the disputed territories.