Barak: Israel is Jewish state, world understands this

Defense minister meets with Tony Blair, says not feasible that this issue should be reason why peace talks will fail.

Barak (photo credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS)
Barak
(photo credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS)
Defense Minister Ehud Barak on Thursday said that The State of Israel is Jewish state, it was established as a Jewish and democratic state that fulfills the Zionist vision, and the whole world understand this.
Barak made the comments before meeting with Quartet Envoy Tony Blair and continued to say "I think that we do not need to receive confirmation of this every time. Using this understanding, it is not feasible that this issue should be the only reason why the chances of continuing the direct negotiations will fail."
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"In my opinion, Palestinian officials and leaders in the past have expressed positivity towards the issue. This is our stance, it is fully understood," Barak said.
Barak's comments come two days after Industry, Trade and Labor Minister Binyamin Ben- Eliezer said that if the White House presses the two sides, Israelis and Palestinians can make progress with peace talks.
Ben-Eliezer blamed Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas for the current impasse in talks, which have stalled since Palestinians have refused to speak to Israel since Jerusalem failed to extend the settlement freeze that expired in September.
Hilary Leila Krieger contributed to this report.