Netanyahu: I’ll treat Lebanon deal like the Oslo Accords

Opposition Leader vows that if elected on Tuesday, he will “neutralize'”Israel’s newly signed maritime border agreement with Beirut.

By World Israel News Staff

Israeli Opposition leader and former prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Monday that if he returns to power after this week’s election, he will effectively “neutralize” Israel’s recently signed maritime border deal with Lebanon.

Speaking to Israel Army Radio on the eve of the elections for the 25th Knesset, Netanyahu slammed the deal signed by Prime Minister Yair Lapid last week, yielding to Lebanese demands that Israel shift its maritime border southward, transferring its control over part of the Sidon-Qana gas field to Beirut.

Even before the agreement was inked last Thursday, Netanyahucondemned the deal, calling it’s a victory for Hezbollah and claiming its passage during a lame duck session ahead of the election without a Knesset vote is illegal.

When asked Monday whether he intends to abrogate the agreement, Netanyahu said he would “neutralize” it. He compared the Lebanon deal to the Oslo Accords of the 1990s.

“I will behave as I did with the Oslo Accords,” Netanyahu said, “another weak, surrendering agreement by a leftist government.”

“I don’t know if it was canceled, but the danger in it was neutralized.”

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First elected premier in 1996, Netanyahu was accused by the Palestinian Authority and the Clinton administration of slow-walking implementation of the 1993 Oslo Accords.

Turning to right-wing ally and Otzma Yehudit party chief MK Itamar Ben-Gvir, Netanyahu said he has not ruled out Ben-Gvir’s demand Sunday to be appointed Public Security Minister in a future rightist government.

“I won’t rule it out, but there are many candidates.”

When asked how he would respond to pressure by Ben-Gvir to permit greater Jewish access to the Temple Mount, Netanyahu said he favors maintaining the status quo at the holy site.

“I want to maintain the status quo. We are a leading ruling party and have been in the past. I’ve been through all sorts of coalition negotiations.”

“In the end its common sense that determines what happens, and it usually boils down to the right things,” he said.