lieberman in shfaram 248.88.
(photo credit: AP)
"We cannot suffocate people and life in the territories," Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said in a conference of Druse Israel Beiteinu members in the Arab city of Shfaram in northern Israel.
Lieberman was responding to a statement made earlier Thursday by German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who called on Israel to halt settlement construction completely, "otherwise we will not come to the two-state solution that is urgently needed."
Lieberman asked cynically whether "on the background of what happened today in North korea, which fired three missiles, after all the warnings and sanctions by the international community, it is appropriate to continue obsessing with the same house in Yitzhar, Tekoa or Bet El."
"Is this not out of proportion? Should this be the top of the international community's agenda after the recent events in Teheran? We need to explain to our true friends, the US and Germany too, that we cannot suffocate people, and life, in the territories."
Lieberman also said the new government in Israel was elected so that it could negotiate a "give and receive" peace deal with the Arabs, and not a "give and give some more" deal.
The foreign minister told his Druse constituents the government intends to resolve the Israeli Palestinian conflict, and was "not afraid to take responsibility, but responsibility does not mean conceding time after time."
He reminded his audience that "it is no coincidence that since Oslo in 1993 we have failed to resolve the conflict, even after we transferred territories over to the Palestinian Authority and after the disengagement from the Gaza Strip."