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Hatnua chairwoman Photo: Moti Kimhi
Hatnua chairwoman Photo: Moti Kimhi
 
Obama and Netanyahu Photo: AFP
Obama and Netanyahu Photo: AFP
 
 

Livni: Obama's comments a wake-up call

Hatnua chairwoman responds to US president's remarks on Netanyahu-led, Israeli isolationism saying, 'the relationship with the US is important to us, part of our deterrence-related capabilities'

Moran Azulay
Published: 01.15.13, 18:01 / Israel News

A week prior to Israeli elections, the comments made by US President Barack Obama open Hatnua Chairwoman Tzipi Livni's political platform presentation.

 

Livni spoke Tuesday of an agreement with the Palestinians and regional policies that will supposedly remove Israel from the deep isolation of which Obama warned. His words are "a wake-up call for all Israelis," she said.

 

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According to Livni, "You can love the US president or not, but the relationship with the US is important to us and part of our deterrence-related capabilities."

 

She referred to comments made by Obama and quoted by senior journalist Jeffrey Goldberg. "Israel doesn’t know what its own best interests are," said Obama who is of the opinion that Netanyahu "is moving his country down a path toward near-total isolation," as stated in the report.

 

Following Israel's announcement on expanding construction in the E1 area between Jerusalem and Ma'aleh Adumim, Obama didn't even bother getting angry and told a few people that he has learned to expect this kind of behavior from Netanyahu.

 


לבני, היום. "לנקות מהשולחן את כל משקעי העבר" (צילום: מוטי קמחי)

Livni says clean slate needed (Photo: Moti Kimhi) 

 

"I have become inured to Israel's self-defeating policies," Obama stressed – in a stance much harsher than the official US government declarations.

 

Livni declared that "the day after elections, the first coordination must be made with the US." She also requested "an honest conversation to clean the slate of all past ills and residues – on the Iranian and Palestinian issues respectively."

 

Regarding her political agenda, the Hatnua chairwoman promised that "prior to negotiations we will receive US backing for security arrangements on all future agreements. The US will reply and confirm the commitments we received in the previous government from President Bush, which say that the future border will be in the settlement blocs and refugees will not be returned to Israel."

 

With this support, Livni vowed, "we will move forward and conclude with Europe that they will back an Israeli-initiated negotiation. I am telling you from experience – they will retract their decision not to upgrade their relationship with Israel. This is no less important today in the face of the economic issues. Europe is currently one step away from boycotts and launching their own plans."

 

So what exactly does Livni want to discuss with the Palestinians? "We will begin direct negotiations, without the international community's involvement. A declaration will be made on the conclusion of claims.

 

The agreements include a demilitarized Palestinian state without '67 borders, in coordination with the settlement blocs and from there we will advance with the necessary caution in order to safeguard Israel's interests."

 

She detailed three phases:

  • "Full coordination with the United States. A declaration on the end of the conflict and two national states. Full recognition of the State of Israel.

  • An agreement on security-related conditions. A demilitarized Palestinian state without '67 borders, in coordination with the settlement blocs. This will allow for the enlistment of Europe, Turkey and moderate Arab countries alongside Israel.
  • Incremental implementation only after the conditions have been actualized – and the establishment of a Palestinian state."

 

What about Gaza?

Regarding the Gaza-ruled Hamas, Livni said that "the moment we begin negotiations we will revert back to a situation in which the Hamas is illegitimate.

 

"The status of Gaza will be determined only in accordance with the met security conditions." She spoke of regional participation in the negotiations; especially that of Turkey and said, "this is an opportunity to return our relationship to one of normalcy."

 

She criticized Yesh Atid Chairman Yair Lapid saying that his platform calls for ultra-Orthodox enlistment in five years' time. "He is giving up on the equal sharing of the burden and hiding – that is sad to me. I am really sorry about that."

 

She also mocked Lapid's statement regarding the decision of his party members' vow not to serve as ministers-without-portfolios in the next government.

 

The Likud-Beiteinu's election headquarters commented saying, "unfortunately, Tzipi Livni and the left continue trying to enlist the world against Israel instead of standing with the prime minister against Iran. Folding is not leading.

 

"A responsible leadership needs to demand Israel's national interests and the prime minister will continue to maintain the vital interests for the security of Israel's citizens."

 

 

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