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Bibi in Arab TV interview: Peace talks can be in Ramallah

JTA

July 20, 2011 | 10:17 am

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during an interview on an Arabic-language television station suggested Ramallah as a possible site for the immediate restarting of Israeli-Palestinian peace talks.

“I’m prepared to negotiate with President [Mahmoud] Abbas directly for peace between our two peoples right now,” Netanyahu said Wednesday, making reference to the Palestinian Authority leader Wednesday on the pan-Arab TV station Al-Arabiya. “We can do it here in my home in Jerusalem, we can do it in Ramallah [in the West Bank], we can do it anywhere.”

Netanyahu blamed the Palestinians for not being willing to restart peace talks. The Palestinians say they will not return to the negotiating table until Israel halts all construction in the West Bank. Israel is calling on the Palestinians to recognize the country as a Jewish state.

Also in the interview, Netanyahu said he was “concerned” about the current uprising in Syria.

“We don’t intervene with what happens in Syria, but it does not mean we are not concerned,” he said.

“We would like the peace and quiet on the Israeli-Syrian border to be maintained. I’d like to have that ultimately turned into a formal peace between Israel and Syria.”

Netanyahu admitted that he has held secret peace negotiations with Damascus. 

Al-Arabiya is Saudi owned and based in Dubai.

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