Tags: Donald Trump | Iran | Israel | Middle East | Trump Administration | benjamin netanyahu | jerusalem

Netanyahu: Trump 'Exposed' Palestinian Disinterest in Peace Talks


By    |   Thursday, 25 January 2018 04:42 PM

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Thursday that President Donald Trump's threat to withhold aid from the Palestinians until they returned to peace talks "exposed" the authority's disinterest in "a genuine discussion on real peace."

"The Palestinian position has been exposed," Netanyahu told reporters after a sideline meeting with Trump at the World Economic Summit in Davos, The Times of Israel reports.

"They want to escape from a genuine discussion on real peace that includes recognition of the Jewish state that is in control of its own security."

"President Trump expressed his belief that if we come to the table and they do as well that we will then be able to hold negotiations on the issues," Netanyahu added.

"We are ready for negotiations, but I do not see that they are as well."

President Trump said in Davos his decision had consequences, since the U.S. gives "hundreds of millions of dollars" to the Palestinians.

"That money is on the table — and that money's not going to them unless they sit down and negotiate peace," he said.

A Palestinian official called Trump's "language of dictation unacceptable."

President Trump's decision last year to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital roiled Arab nations, leading the Palestinians to refuse to meet with Vice President Mike Pence during his Mideast visit this week.

The authority also declared U.S.-led peace efforts dead, saying Washington could no longer be trusted as an honest broker.

"President Trump trusts in the negotiations," Netanyahu told reporters. "He knows to set clear stances, but also to leave things vague.

"He made an historical and explicit statement on Jerusalem — and he expects both sides to come and grapple with the plan proposed by his team.

"We are ready for the plan at any time," the prime minister said.

Netanyahu also praised President Trump's overall Mideast plan, which also includes moving the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem, saying "I left the conversation very encouraged.

"Not only because of our close friendship with the Americans — but beyond that, we spoke about Iran's ability to establish military bases in Syria, and also Lebanon, and to develop precise weaponry in Syria.

"The president conveyed a full understanding of the policy I lead regarding these two aggressive measures aimed at changing the balance of power."

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President Donald Trump "exposed" the Palestinians' disinterest in "a genuine discussion on real peace," Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Thursday.
benjamin netanyahu, jerusalem, money on the table, peace, palestinians
Thursday, 25 January 2018 04:42 PM
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