Ahead of Washington visit, Naftali Bennett pledges growth of settlements

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Ahead of Washington visit, Naftali Bennett pledges growth of settlements
In his first discussion with an international news organization as prime minister, Bennett told The New York Times major diplomatic moves in either direction were off the table for now.
By HALEY COHEN
AUGUST 25, 2021

Two days ahead of his first meeting with President Joe Biden, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said he would neither annex West Bank territory nor permit it to become a Palestinian state and plans to expand the area's Jewish settlements. In his first discussion with an international news organization since succeeding Benjamin Netanyahu in June, Bennett, who is expected to arrive in Washington Tuesday night, told The New York Times in an interview published Tuesday that the left-to-right composition of his coalition government meant that major diplomatic moves in either direction are being called off for now.

“This government will neither annex nor form a Palestinian state, everyone gets that,” he said. “I’m prime minister of all Israelis, and what I’m doing now is finding the middle ground — how we can focus on what we agree upon.” Netanyahu had considered annexation under the terms of a peace agreement advanced by the Trump administration but rejected by the Palestinians. Congressional Democrats, including some who are pro-Israel, fired back that annexing parts of the West Bank would significantly harm US-Israel relations.

more............. https://www.jpost.com/israel-news/a...nnett-pledges-expansion-of-settlements-677640
 
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