Ayalon: Israel's policy on settlements indicates lack of good faith

Former Shin Bet head Ami Ayalon on Monday said that if Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's government were negotiating with the Palestinians in good faith, Israel would be urging settlers to leave the West Bank communities voluntarily. "If the government passes a law enabling voluntary evacuation [from settlements], the US will back down from the issue of settlements' natural growth and will focus on the major issues," Ayalon told Israel Radio. He went on to explain that the Iranian nuclear threat, not West Bank settlements, should be the focus of US-Israel talks. "This is lack of good faith on the part of those carrying out the negotiations; allow anyone [of the settlers] who wishes to do so to get out of there, because once you've accepted the two-state solution it's clear the territory east of the security barrier will not be Israeli territory," Ayalon concluded.