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Netanyahu in London: Palestinian sovereignty may not work

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (L) meets with British Prime Minister Theresa May (R) during his official visit in London, UK on 2 November 2017 [United Kingdom Prime Ministry/Anadolu Agency]

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declared on Friday that Palestinian sovereignty may not work, in remarks made during a visit to London.

Speaking at Chatham House, Netanyahu said that before establishing a Palestinian state “it’s time we reassessed whether the modern model we have of sovereignty, and unfettered sovereignty, is applicable everywhere in the world”.

According to Haaretz, “he emphasised that for Israel ‘the overriding concern is always security’, and therefore other models of sovereignty should be studied.”

At the same event, Netanyahu described the demand for the removal of West Bank settlers as “ethnic cleansing”, comparing the settlers to Palestinian citizens of Israel.

Netanyahu: No Palestinian unity at Israel’s ‘expense’

“From the Palestinian point of view, why do I have to take out Jews for peace? Do I have to take Arab citizens out of Israel for peace?”

Meanwhile, speaking on the Andrew Marr Show, Netanyahu refused to be drawn on whether he supported a genuine Palestinian state, merely saying that the Palestinians should have “powers to govern themselves”.

In January this year, Netanyahu told his cabinet ministers that the most he is prepared to give the Palestinians is a “state minus”, which is “why the Palestinians do not agree”. Ahead of his re-election in 2015, Netanyahu vowed there would be no Palestinian state on his watch.

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