Livni close up 311.
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski [file[)
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu should give into US President Barack Obama’s
request to renew the 10-month construction moratorium in Judea and Samaria,
opposition leader Tzipi Livni said in an interview with Channel 2 on
RELATED:Editorial: Paying the price of the moratoriumAnalysis: PA knows must keep talking even if freeze ends
She accused Netanyahu of instigating a fight with the Obama
administration, because he was afraid of fighting with hawkish ministers in his
“When [Netanyahu] mumbles, it weakens Israel,” Livni
“After I see his unwillingness to make a decision just to
keep his coalition intact when there is pressure on Israel, I call upon him to
make a decision – fast.”
The opposition leader said she told Netanyahu he
must make every effort to prevent a collapse of the direct negotiations with the
“For me, a moratorium has nothing to do with ideology,”
Livni said. “What are a few buildings compared with the people’s desire for
peace?” Livni responded to critics who said she should have attacked Netanyahu
sooner on the issue. A lengthy cover story in Ma’ariv’s weekend magazine accused
her of being an ineffective opposition leader who too often remains silent due
to advice from her strategic advisers.
“When it looked like Netanyahu
could negotiate without having to pay for it by extending the freeze, I waited
silently and behaved responsibly,” she said. “I didn’t want to weaken him on
“Now the time has come to criticize.”
Livni said she
understood that her constituents wanted her to be more outspoken, but that she
had decided to support efforts by the government to initiate negotiations with
the Palestinians, because the talks are in Israel’s interests.
the opposition to the Netanyahu government, not to Israel,” she said.
Likud responded to Livni’s criticism by saying that Netanyahu had stood up for
Israel’s security needs while Livni harmed Israel’s security by negotiating UN
Security Council Resolution 1701 that enabled Hizbullah to rearm following the
Second Lebanon War.
“Livni is the last person who could scold us on the
diplomatic issue after she failed to reach an agreement with the Palestinians
despite conceding to them on everything,” Likud MK Ophir Akunis
Addressing the possibility that former IDF chief of Staff Lt.-Gen.
(res.) Dan Halutz would join Kadima, Livni praised him but said he had not
“We need worthy people in politics, and he is worthy in my
eyes,” she said.