Benjamin Netanyahu (Screenshot) (Screenshot)
Benjamin Netanyahu

Israeli prime minister slams claim settlements contravene international law. ‘There’s never been an international decision that says Jews cannot live in Judea – that’s where we come from.’

By Ben Rappaport, United with Israel

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says that Israel will do “whatever we need to do to defend ourselves” against Iran.

Speaking to Sky News in an interview published Friday, Netanyahu explained that he doesn’t think diplomacy alone will stop Iran from developing its nuclear capability.

“I think diplomacy can only work if it’s coupled with a credible military threat or the willingness to apply the military option if deterrence fails,” he said.

“Iran is openly committed to destroying, repeating the Holocaust and destroying the six or seven million Jews of Israel and we’re not going to sit by, idly by and let them do it.

“(If) these Ayatollahs think that they could threaten us with a nuclear holocaust they’re wrong. We will do whatever we need to do to defend ourselves,” he added.

Regarding the possibility of normalized relations between Israel and Saudi Arabia, Netanyahu commented that “”Our hand is extended to all Arab States and certainly to Saudi Arabia which is vitally important.”

“We have great opportunities to advance the peace in our region, peace between our two countries, the wellbeing of our peoples. I think it would change history.”

“I mean we have already made one historic turning point with the four peace treaties of The Abraham accords which Israel made under my leadership with UAE (United Arab Emirates), with Bahrain, with Morocco, with Sudan.

“Obviously Saudi Arabia would be a quantum leap forward because it’s the most influential Arab country not only in the Arab world I think also in the Muslim world, so it would fashion I think the possibility of ending the Arab-Israeli conflict, and I think that it would also help us solve the Palestinian-Israeli conflict,” Netanyahu added.

The prime minister also pushed back against claims brought by the interviewer that Israeli settlements are an “obstacle to peace” and “contravene international law.”

“There’s never been an international decision that says Jews cannot live in Judea – that’s where we come from.”

The prime minister added that it is permissible to build on land defined as “disputed territory – which [Judea and Samaria] is. You call it occupied, we call it disputed.”

“It’s part of our ancestral homeland, we’ve only been attached to it for three thousand years. King David established our capital here in Jerusalem only three thousand years ago.

“We’re not the Belgians in Congo or the Dutch in Indonesia. For G-d’s sake, this is the land of Israel – it’s our country.”

“So I completely disagree with that,” Netanyahu said.

The real reason successive Israeli governments have never been able to make peace with the Palestinians, Netanyahu insisted, is because “The Palestinians have been commandeered by a leadership that doesn’t want peace with Israel, they want peace without Israel. They don’t want a state next to Israel, they want a state instead of it.”

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