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Knesset controversy over responsibility for failure of negotiations with Palestinians

February 20, 2014 at 3:34 pm

Israeli MPs have held an extraordinary session called by the opposition parties over accusations about who should take the blame for the failure of negotiations with the Palestinians. Opposition leader Tzipi Livni of the Kadima Party was behind the meeting following her strong criticism of Benjamin Netanyahu’s coalition government.

“The government prefers to sit in the spectator’s seat and refrain from taking part in the negotiation process with the Palestinian side,” said Livni. Her colleague Yohanan Plesnar said that he holds the Prime Minister fully responsible for the failure of the political process to find peace in the conflict. He warned of the potential for a deterioration of the security situation as a result.

Likud MP Yuli-Yoel Edelstein responded by pointing out that Livni herself “is the one who caused the negotiations’ failure”. She should not, he added, seek to give advice to Netanyahu on how to manage them. Edelstein claimed that the government’s recent efforts should get the credit for the mobilisation of European opposition against the Palestinian bid for United Nations recognition of an independent state.