(February 1, 2018 / JNS) Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu publicly rejected an assertion Wednesday by German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel that Israel actively sought a “two-state solution.”
Following a meeting between the two leaders in Jerusalem, Gabriel stated that he was “very thankful to hear that, of course, also the government of Israel wants to have two states, but with (secure) borders.” Netanyahu interrupted Gabriel to assert that Israel’s security was the first consideration, and that Israel will retain security control over Palestinian areas in any negotiated settlement.
“No, that we will control security west of the Jordan (river)… that is I think the first condition,” Netanyahu interjected.
“Whether it is defined as a state when we have the military control is another matter, but I’d rather not discuss labels, but substance.”
Following the meeting with Netanyahu, Gabriel spoke at the Institute for National Security Studies annual policy conference, stating, “there is clearly growing frustration with Israel’s actions” in Europe, and that “it is increasingly difficult for people like me to explain…why our support for Israel must persist.”