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Knesset Speaker expresses concerns about Obama victory

February 17, 2014 at 11:19 pm

The Speaker of the Israeli parliament, the Knesset, has expressed concern that Israel will face security and political obstacles over settlements if US President Barack Obama is re-elected. Reuben Rivlin told Israeli public radio that even though there will be cooperation, no matter what the new government of Israel looks like, if Obama wins there will be obstacles and difficulties as well.

“We know exactly the policy adopted by the Obama administration,” said Rivlin, “and in my estimation, if Obama wins a second term, we will face difficulties over our settlements.”

The Speaker’s remarks were made during a tour of the settlements of Havat Gilad and Rhalim in the north of the occupied West Bank. He was accompanied by Gershon Msika, the chairman of Shomron settlement council. During the tour he met with a number of settlers and listened to their complaints about the roads to their settlements and what they claim is their poor infrastructure.

“Wherever there are Jews existing legally,” Rivlin told them, “they should be assisted to settle their own affairs and must be provided with infrastructure serving their needs.” This, he insisted, will be put before the next Israeli government for “appropriate solutions”.