Olmert slams gov't, urges PM to answer to US requests

Former prime minister says Netanyahu should stop arguing with and offending whole world, urges renewal of W.Bank settlement moratorium.

Ehud Olmert speech 311 (photo credit: Yossi Zamir)
Ehud Olmert speech 311
(photo credit: Yossi Zamir)
Former prime minster Ehud Olmert slammed Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's government on Tuesday calling on it to answer to requests made the US to renew the West Bank settlement moratorium.
Speaking at the Socio-Economic Forum put on by the Industry, Trade and Labor Ministry Olmert condemned Netanyahu's decision to not answer to US President Barack Obama's request that Israel declare a two-month extension of the West Bank building freeze, saying that the prime minister's s refusal damaged Israel's strategic interests.
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Olmert said Netanyahu's government should stop "arguing with and offending the whole world" explaining that it could lead to Israel's political isolation in the world and damage Israel's economy.
Olmert attacked Netanyahu's policy makers and said "you think in your opinion that it's OK to argue with the whole world, to offend the whole world and to enjoy the economic fruits these states have to offer.
"There are those who believe it is possible to separate the political situation from the economic situation and these people use the phrase 'economic peace'," Olmert said, alluding to Netanyahu. "This is a great phrase but in reality it doesn’t actually exist."
"When we raise doubts about if we support a two-state agreement, everyone will talk about the settlements," Olmert said.