FM: Israel is willing to resume talks without preconditions

Foreign minister offers support for PM in 'complex' US meetings, notes Jerusalem will not negotiate Palestinian right of return; "there's no need to turn every dispute into a drama."

May 23, 2011 14:33
1 minute read.
Avigdor Lieberman

Avigdor Lieberman 521. (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)

Israel is ready to resume peace negotiations with the Palestinians "at any moment with no preconditions," Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said Monday at an Israel Beiteinu meeting. His comments came in response to talk surrounding US President Barack Obama's two major speeches in the past week.

Lieberman also offered his support for what he described as Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's "complex" meetings in Washington DC. "[Netanyahu] is representing Israeli society, not the press," Lieberman said. "There is no need to turn every dispute into [a] drama. Not everything is an apocalypse."

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The foreign minister stressed that Israel and the US have many more commonalities than differences.

On Palestinian demands, Lieberman said, "I hear the mantra of the right of return. Anyone who talks of the right of return means destroying Israel," he said.

"There won't be negotiations on the right of return, not even for one refugee," Lieberman added. "The Palestinians can raise it but we won't accept even one."

The foreign minister wished Netanyahu success on the rest of his United States visit.

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