Steinitz: Abbas Torpedoed Peace Talks


 yuval-steinitzPA President Mahmoud Abbas put an end to the peace talks, Israeli Strategic Affairs Minister Yuval Steinitz told the American Jewish Committee’s Global Forum in Washington on Tuesday. “It is quite clear to everybody involved who left the negotiations table suddenly, who decided, two-three months ago, to leave the negotiations table and to approach the international community with requests for membership to organizations and to approach Hamas to form a unity government.”
In contrast, Steinitz said, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had “accepted, with some reservations, the overall framework” put forth by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry. “Abbas rejected Kerry’s framework and refused to meet him in Ramallah,” Steinitz said.

“Nobody in the world should preach to us, pressure us, convince us to make peace – because this little country is eager to make peace,” Steinitz said. While “most Israelis in order to make peace are ready to make concessions,” it was important for Israelis to “know with confidence that what we are getting in return is genuine peace and real security.”

“Genuine peace” means an end to the conflict – including “that Israel has the right to be accepted and recognized as a Jewish state by all its neighbors….You cannot demand Israel recognize a Palestinian state as a state for the Palestinian people and at the same time deny the Jewish people the right to its own nation state.”

{ Israel News Bureau}