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Lieberman calls on Trump to form alliance with Israel and moderate Arab states

The Israeli defence minister has called on US President-elect Donald Trump to form an alliance to fight terrorism, including Israel and moderate Arab countries amongst the membership, the Jerusalem Post, has reported.

"This is what Israel should be focusing on with the new administration," explained the extreme right-wing Avigdor Lieberman. "In effect, it is similar to the coalition that the US established in 1991 ahead of the First Gulf War, only this time with Israel as a member."

Lieberman believes that even those Arab countries which do not have diplomatic relations with Israel will agree to join the coalition under pressure from the US. "The moderate Arab world understands that the real threat against it is not Jews, Zionism or Israel, but rather the radicals in the Muslim world."

He suggested that membership of such a group would create trust in the region. "The biggest problem between us and the Palestinians is lack of trust. Before we talk about negotiations and solutions, we first need to create trust. The coalition is a way to create that trust."

The minister has called before for normalising relations between Israel and the Arab countries in order to pave the way for peace with the Palestinians. However, his coalition proposal contradicts the Arab Peace Initiative approved by the Arab countries in 2002, which calls for the normalisation of relations with Israel to be preceded by the establishment of a Palestinian state on the 1967 borders and a fair solution to the refugee problem. The Arab Summit held in Nouakchott last year reiterated its dedication to the initiative.

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Asia & AmericasIsraelMiddle EastNewsPalestineUS
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