Australia hints at support for two-state alternatives after Trump-Netanyahu meeting


Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in September 2016. Credit: Amos Ben Gershom/GPO. 

( Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop seemed to suggest an openness to alternatives to a two-state solution less than a day after President Donald Trump seemingly pulled back from longstanding unequivocal U.S. support for two states.

In an interview with Sky News, Bishop said that if the Israelis and Palestinians were open to a one-state solution, then the world should recognize that.

“If they can come up with another solution that they were prepared to live with that ensured that the Israelis and the Palestinians could live side by side, live together behind internationally recognized boundaries, then of course the world should support that,” she said.

Bishop added, “What we need is for the Palestinians to recognize that the state of Israel exists and will continue to exist.”

During a press conference with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Feb. 15 at the White House, Trump said he would be open to a one-state solution if that is what the Israelis and Palestinians agreed on.

“I can live with either one. I thought for a while it looked like the two-state, looked like it may be the easier of the two, but honestly if Bibi (Netanyahu) and if the Palestinians if Israel and the Palestinians are happy, I'm happy with the one they like the best," Trump said.

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, however, said that his country’s position on a two-state solution has not changed.

“Our position has not changed. There should be a two-state solution negotiated with Israel and the Palestinian Authority,” he told Sky News.

Posted on February 16, 2017 .