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Netanyahu, Abdullah discuss rail cooperation

Prime minister says meeting with Jordan's king was 'very good', included ideas for Ashdod-Eilat-Aqaba railway

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Tuesday that his secret meeting with Jordan's King Abdullah II was "very good". He said ideas for cooperation in the field of transportation were raised in the meeting, and added that the Jordanian king has no reason to object to a railroad track that links Eilat, Aqaba and Ashdod.


"I told the king of Jordan that we are going to connect the State of Israel with a network of roads and trains, and that we are starting to build a valley train from Haifa to the Jordan Valley," Netanyahu said at the National Security College's graduation ceremony on Jerusalem.


"King Abdullah said, 'We are also building a train to the same area, lets connect.'". Netanyahu added, "We spoke of the southern railroad track between Eilat and Ashdod, and I said there's no reason this line shouldn't be an Eilat-Aqaba-Ashdod line."

Netanyahu (L) with King Abdullah II (Photo: Avi Ohayon, GPO)


Netanyahu said he spoke with the Jordanian king about promoting peace and security with the Palestinians and the entire region. "I very much appreciate Jordan's desire to move forward with these goals and its contribution to stability in the entire region," Netanyahu said. He also noted that the parities discussed the possibility of cooperation in the fields of economy and energy.


The Netanyahu-Abdullah meeting is of great importance particularly in light of the anti-Israel remarks voiced by the Jordanian king over the past year. Abdullah has said that Israel is as "isolated as North Korea", and has repeatedly expressed his concern that a "political vacuum" could lead to a regional war.


Netanyahu also addressed the importance of a peace agreement with the Palestinians. "The region where we live has a lot of instability and a lot of dangers. We had peace with Iran. For years we had ties with them, but this peace did not withstand the changes that took place within Iran."


He warned that caution should be used. "We must have peace agreements that include a solution to the threats against us, because we do not want to repeat what happened when we withdrew from Lebanon and got an Iranian military base in the north, and we do not want to have what happened in Gaza, where a southern Iranian enclave was created with increasing armament."


Netanyahu said that Israel must preserve its ability to defend itself in the frame of the new conditions to be created in the region.



פרסום ראשון: 07.27.10, 21:51
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