Netanyahu wishes president quick recovery; says Lebanese gov't to blame for Friday's rocket attack.
By JPOST.COM STAFF
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu voiced words of encouragement for President Shimon Peres at the beginning of Sunday's weekly cabinet meeting, saying, "Shimon can't be stopped, I asked him to meet only with [US Middle East Envoy George] Mitchell, to rest a bit."
Netanyahu was speaking after Peres was released from hospital earlier Sunday morning, having been hospitalized after fainting momentarily while making a speech in Tel Aviv Saturday evening.
"There is genuine concern on the part of every citizen in our country for our president," Netanyahu said. "In the name of every minister in Israel, we wish him good health." Netanyahu and his wife had personally called Peres in the hospital to wish him well on Saturday night. He told the cabinet he was concerned after being informed of the incident.
"I called and told him in my name, in my wife's name and in the name of the people of Israel that we all hope he feels better," Netanyahu said. He added that after talking to Peres again Sunday morning, the president "feels great."
In the cabinet meeting, the prime minister also referred to Friday incident when two Katyusha rockets were fired at northern Israel. "We view this severely. I have already said that we will not overlook attacks on Israel and terrorism against Israeli civilians. We have filed a complaint with the [United Nation] Security Council over the violation of the truce. It is clear that these rockets were fired from south of the Litani River, in contravention of Resolution 1701."
Reiterating Israel's official complaint, Netanyahu said "we see the Lebanese government as responsible for any violation [of Resolution 1701] or aggression from Lebanon into Israel. We continue defending ourselves and continue in efforts to promote peace," he said.
Netanyahu, scheduled to travel to Egypt on Sunday afternoon to meet with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak and with Mitchell, also said in the meeting "there is still work, I hope we close the gaps in order to move the diplomatic process forward. It is not us who present obstacles; as far as [Israel] is concerned there are no holdups on the way to entering diplomatic talks."
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