Israel has made a lot of gestures and convinced almost everybody in the international community that we are serious about peace with the Palestinians.
Newscaster: IBA reporter Leah Zinder asked Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon about the upcoming visit of the American peace envoy George Mitchell.
Danny Ayalon: I think that we should all applaud the determination and the leadership that we see by the presidency, by Obama himself, by his entire administration. We have to remember that the situation is so complex, reality is in a way brutal, not just here, but we see it over in Iran, Afghanistan, in Yemen, Zimbabwe and many many other places. So I think that all things considered, we see a very very determined and courageous leadership by the president, by the United States and we will continue to follow its lead.
Leah Zinder: Do you think that this time Senator Mitchell will in fact succeed, we”re told that the United States wants a peace agreement in 2 years? Do you have reason to believe that peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians will in fact resume in he near future?
Danny Ayalon: We hope so, for peace talks you need two. Israel is very willing, we have done a lot of gestures and really we have, I believe, convinced almost everybody in the international community that we are serious. Now it”s time for the Palestinians to move over to the table, and I think this is the major task facing all of us now, and of course including Senator Mitchell, which we very much respect. As far as time frame, I would hesitate to really make any reference to time frame, because we know from the past that it was not realistic, and it is more important to judge progress by developments and reality on the ground than just by artificial timelines.