“You can say it will be good if we give [the Palestinians] a state … empirically it doesn’t work with what we see,” Netanyahu stated.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stated that a two-state solution to the conflict with the Palestinians “doesn’t work with what we see,” while stressing the key component of Israel’s security any such deal.
After his meeting at the White House with President Donald Trump and ahead of his address on Tuesday at the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) Conference, Netanyahu sat with several American reporters on Monday in the president’s official guest house and took questions.
When asked about Trump’s peace proposal, which has so far been shrouded in secrecy with regard to specifics, Netanyahu said he “did not see a draft” during his meeting with Trump and would not say whether he has seen a draft before, NPR reported.
When asked if he believed in the two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Netanyahu said, “I haven’t named it. But I’ve defined it,” meaning that he did support such a solution, which specifics he defined in his 2009 speech at Bar Ilan University.
He told the reporters that Israel did not seek to govern the Palestinians, but that Israel must retain overriding security control in Judea and Samaria, which Palestinians seek for a state, arguing that the Palestinians are not capable of properly governing and combating terrorism.
“There is no ability by the Palestinians to deal with these things. Who does the job is the Israeli security forces,” Netanyahu said. “You can say it will be good if we give them a state … empirically it doesn’t work with what we see.”
Palestinians Consistently Reject Peace
The Trump administration is reportedly at the final stages of formulating a peace plan between Israel and the Palestinians. However, the Palestinians have repeatedly rejected the US as a mediator and are looking to Europe and other countries to serve as moderators who would be more sympathetic to their positions.
Trump has called the agreement the “deal of the century,” and Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat released alleged portions of the “deal,” which he rejected as “liquidating” Palestinian dreams of statehood, while amounting to an “apartheid system.”
Speaking to a Fatah gathering last week, Erekat presented a purported point-by-point outline of Trump’s proposal, which included, among other features, the following terms: a demilitarized Palestinian state with a strong police force and a “capital” outside the current municipal boundaries of Jerusalem; Israeli annexation of settlement blocs in Judea and Samaria and withdrawal from areas currently under Palestinian control; international recognition of Israel as the Jewish people’s homeland and the Palestinian state as the homeland of the Palestinians; and a solution for Palestinian “refugees” in the context of the future Palestinian state.
Commenting on the prospects of such a plan, Dr. Mordechai Kedar from Bar Ilan University told World Israel News that “the plan will go nowhere because Israel knows where it will lead and that is to another terror state. Israel is well aware that the entire concept would devastate Israeli security. Dealing with the core issues is fruitless because the Arabs reject the conclusions in advance. With its current boundaries, Israel is invincible. Unfortunately, due to the relationship with Trump and the US, Netanyahu cannot afford to say ‘no.’ I expect that he will give Trump praise and moral support, but in fact Netanyahu will drag his feet and do nothing to bring the Palestinians to the table.”