Netanyahu: External attempts to force peace process on Israel will fail

In a video address to the General Assembly of the Jewish Federations of North America in Washington, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reiterated his expectation that the Obama Administration would not try a lame-duck attempt to impose on Israel a faulty solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stated Tuesday that peace between Israel and the Palestinians will not be achieved through “statements and resolutions at the United Nations” or external international pressure, but rather a mutually reached agreement.

Addressing the General Assembly of the Jewish Federations of North America in Washington via video conference from Jerusalem, Netanyahu said that “the only way you really get a workable and enduring peace is to have the parties agree to it. This is what happened in our peace treaties with Egypt and Jordan. It’s holding because there was mutual negotiations, mutual compromise, mutual agreement, and it sticks.”

The peace treaties with these Arab countries have “weathered many, many storms,” even as the Middle East is experiencing “convulsions,” but the treaties still hold after decades because “they were directly negotiated between the parties.”

“If you try to impose peace from the outside, it never works,” he underscored.

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Israel will object to any externally imposed solution because “it will harden the Palestinian positions” and “will push peace back. It could push peace back decades.”

Israel is currently contending with initiatives led separately by Egypt, France, Russia, a group of Arab states and the US, while none of them of yielded significant results.

He said that the new reality in the Middle East, shaped by the Islamic State’s (ISIS) terrorism and Iran’s belligerence, and Israel’s policies of contending with these threats “may open up prospects for peace and probably will help us move towards some kind of resolution with the Palestinians.”

“One thing is certain, that trying to impose peace from the outside won’t. So I very much hope that President Obama will continue the policy…the longstanding policy of the United States” not to operate against Israel through international resolutions to pressure Jerusalem into making a move.

He may be alluding to Jerusalem’s fears of the possibility that President Barack Obama will launch a last-ditch diplomatic initiative during the interim period between the elections in November and the swearing-in of the elected president in January, an act that would severely hinder Israel’s maneuvering abilities during any upcoming negotiations.

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Netanyahu said he is looking forward to working with President-Elect Trump “to further the twin interests of peace and security. These are interests of Israel and the United States but they’ll be achieved by direct negotiations between the parties without preconditions.”

Israel has repeatedly expressed its willingness to meet the Palestinians for negotiations any place and anytime, while the Palestinians have set preconditions and demands for any such talks.

By: Aryeh Savir, World Israel News