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Lieberman denies knowledge of US plan to resume negotiations

Avigdor Lieberman, head of the Yisrael Beiteinu party and Defense Minister in Israel [File photo]
Avigdor Lieberman, head of the Yisrael Beiteinu party and Defence Minister in Israel [File photo]

Israeli Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman has said that he has no knowledge of a US plan to resume negotiations with the Palestinians, Arabs48.com reported on Wednesday. However, other Israeli officials, including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, as well as their American counterparts, have said that President Donald Trump is planning to propose talks.

“I know nothing about such a plan,” Lieberman told the Israeli news website Wallah. “We have to be clear. The maximum we can reach is a long-term interim deal. For me, the reconciliation with the Palestinians is possible only as part of a comprehensive regional [agreement].” The far-right politician insisted that he will object to any mutual deal with the Palestinians. “This will not succeed and there is no hope for it. The issue for us is not reconciliation with the Palestinians, but with the Arab world.”

According to Lieberman, there are three components of any reconciliation with Israel: “the Arab states, Israeli Arabs and the Palestinians.” He said that these issues must be addressed as one package. “Then we can speak about a permanent reconciliation.”

The Defence Minister claimed that Israel does not want to clash with the Palestinians. The Palestinian Authority President, Mahmoud Abbas, he argued, “is trying to make the relationship between us and the Gaza Strip deteriorate and drag us into a confrontation there.”

Read: Lieberman: Settlements are Israel’s ‘defensive wall’

When asked about Palestinian reconciliation between Fatah and Hamas, he said: “We are not obliged to comment on everything. Let’s allow this process to go ahead.”

In conclusion, Lieberman pointed out that there are many settlement plans awaiting approval. He stressed that there has not, is not and will not be a government in support of settlements like the current one.

All of Israel’s colonial-settlements across the occupied Palestinian territories are illegal under international law.

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IsraelMiddle EastNewsPalestineUS
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