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Netanyahu chats on Facebook in Arabic

JTA

January 31, 2012 | 11:18 am

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem on Jan. 30. Photo by REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem on Jan. 30. Photo by REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu held a live Facebook chat with web surfers from the Arab world.

Netanyahu responded in Arabic to questions from people from Egypt, Jordan, Iraq, the Gulf States, northern Africa and the Palestinian Authority, as well as from Israeli Arabs.

The questions and answers were translated by Ofir Gendelman, the prime minister’s Arabic media adviser.

In response to a question about the diplomatic process between Israel and the Palestinians, Netanyahu said that “I am ready at this moment to go to Ramallah and begin talks with Abu Mazen without preconditions,” referring to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas. “To my regret, Abu Mazen is not prepared to come to my office. I think that this is a mistake.”

Other topics addressed included the Iranian nuclear threat, the Arab Spring and Saudi Arabia.

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