Danny Ayalon: "We must ensure Israel’s existence as a Jewish State. Not only will pressure not support peace, it will prevent it. We desire peace – but not at the cost of Israel’s national interests."
(Communicated by the Deputy Foreign Minister’s Bureau)
Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon addressed an Israel Bonds delegation today (21 April 2010) , and said that "Yesterday, the State of Israel celebrated its 62nd Day of Independence. Independence, which I am sorry to say, is not obvious to much of the world.
Israel faces security, social and economic challenges, but there are global extremists who threaten not only Israel but also the entire world. Israel has the capability to defend itself, and can be proud of its achievements in its 62 years of independence."
Referring to the negotiations with the Palestinians, Deputy FM Ayalon stated that "Resolving the conflict with the Palestinians is a principal Israeli interest, and no one may moralize with us on this issue. We desire peace, and have proved it more than once. If the Palestinian leadership had done half of what Israel has done for peace, we would have achieved peace with our neighbors by now. In response to Israel concessions, we must also see Palestinian concessions. "
"Peace is our goal, and if the means to achieving that goal is the creation of a Palestinian state, then that is what must be done – not by an artificial schedule and enforced solution, but by building a platform of trust and confidence between the two sides. This trust should be built by direct talks rather than proximity talks, and it is a pity that the Palestinians are creating obstacles on this issue. We must ensure Israel’s existence as a Jewish State. Not only will pressure not support peace, it will prevent it. We desire peace – but not at the cost of Israel’s national interests."
Regarding the Iranian issue, Deputy FM Ayalon stated that "Iran is the greatest threat to the world that can be stopped using non-violent means. We call on the international community to put an end to the Iranian threat."