Livni emphasized that the policy of the government of Israel is based on the desire to further a two-state solution and that unilateralism is not Israel’s ideology.
(Communicated by the Foreign Minister’s Bureau)
Vice Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni held a working meeting today (Monday, 5 June 2006) in Jerusalem with her European Union counterpart, Javier Solana. They discussed a wide range of issues on Israel’s political agenda with the EU, in preparation for Livni’s visit next week to Brussels, where she will appear before the Council of the European Union.
Both ministers lauded the ongoing fruitful cooperation between the EU and Israel, as well as their common political outlook and identical interests. Minister Livni stressed the need to persevere with the international delegitimization of the Palestinian Authority’s Hamas government and its positions, particularly its continuing refusal to fulfill the three minimal conditions set by the international community (recognizing Israel and its right to exist, carrying out all previous agreements, and the total renunciation of terrorism and violence).
She added that Israel would strive to ease humanitarian issues for the Palestinian people as much as possible, "out of the recognition that it should not be punished for its vote." Nevertheless, she said, it must be assured that this is done directly and not by means of mechanisms controlled by Hamas. Livni singled out the Palestnian educational system, stating that, "The world cannot permit itself a Hamas educational system that inculcates hatred and violence."
Another topic of discussion was the recently issued "Palestinian prisoners’ manifesto," which has become the focus of a challenge by PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas to Hamas. Minister Livni emphasized that Israel considers this an internal Palestinian document and has intentionally refrained from relating to its specific contents. "We are carefully following the Palestinians’ internal developments," she added.
Livni emphasized that the policy of the government of Israel is based on the desire to further a two-state solution and that unilateralism is not Israel’s ideology. Accordingly, Israel would strive to advance this solution from the point of view that this is a common interest. "Certainly, Israel’s interest in furthering a two-state solution is shared by the Europeans and by moderate elements on the Palestinian side, those who are willing to recognize Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state.
Minister Livni added that she intends to present her ideas next week to the Council of the European Union.
Solana, who is the EU’s highest representative on foreign policy and security issues, surveyed the various European atttitudes regarding aid to the Palestinians, while emphasizing the need to avoid granting legitimacy to the Hamas government.