In an interview with Channel 2 which aired Saturday, Defense Minister Ya’alon did not deny that he and US Secretary of State John Kerry continue to disagree on key issues related to the peace process, though he added that both Jerusalem and Washington are engaging in an open dialogue.
When asked about the Palestinian demand to include Israeli Arabs on the list of convicted terrorists to be freed as part of the fourth and final prisoner release scheduled for later this month, Ya’alon hinted that Kerry may have promised Ramallah that Israeli Arabs would be release without receiving Israel’s approval.
“The Palestinians never received such a commitment from the government of Israel,” he said. “Maybe they did from Kerry. [PA chairman Mahmoud] Abbas has no sovereign power over Arab citizens of Israel, and I will oppose this [release] in the government if it comes to a vote.”