Monday, March 16, 2015

Netanyahu says no Palestinian state if reelected PM

Israeli PM Netanyahu

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday ruled out the establishment of a Palestinian state if he is reelected, in comments on the eve of a snap general election.

In one of a series of media interviews ahead of Tuesday's vote, Netanyahu was asked by the rightwing NRG website if it was true that there would be no Palestinian state established if he was reelected as premier.

He answered: "Indeed."

In another interview with Israel's public radio, he was tackled on the same subject and asked whether his 2009 Bar Ilan speech -- in which he endorsed for the first time the idea of the two-state solution -- was no longer relevant.

"You can't carry out the things that were laid out in the Bar Ilan speech... when all you have on the other side is terror. There are no forces for peace, no partner for peace," he said, arguing that the current reality was no longer conducive to the creation of a Palestinian state.

"This speech was given before the Arab storm -- the so-called Arab Spring -- which has overwhelmed the Middle East bringing with it radical Islam. Any territory which would be handed over would be taken over by radical Islamists," he said.

"So certainly, reality has changed, and those who don't take that into account are likely to repeat serious mistakes."