On September 21st, Israel’s Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu addressed the press in Sderot on where the peace process is heading, and what needs to be done.

Prime Minister Netanyahu: “My goal is not to conduct a process but to complete it.  My goal is to reach an historic peace agreement between us and our Palestinian Authority neighbors.  Now, I think that I expressed this in my 14.6.09 Bar-Ilan University speech one of the two most important principles for completing such a peace, and that is my willingness – and that of Israel – to recognize a Palestinian national state.  We say that the Palestinian people have a right to a national state of its own.  And we also say that the Palestinians must recognize the right of the Jewish people to a national state of its own.  They need to recognize the Jewish state.  The fact that they do not recognize it, that they are trying to avoid such a simple statement, raises doubts.  It raises questions on the Israeli side.  Why do you not agree?  Why?  Why are you using all kinds of excuses?  You say: we do not call Israel by name.  I spoke about the name of the Palestinian state?  I did not; I spoke about its essence.  I called it the national state of the Palestinian people.  And when the Palestinians refuse say something so simple, the question is – why?  You want to flood the State of Israel about refugees so that it will no longer have a Jewish majority?  You want to tear off parts of the Galilee and the Negev into mini-states?  And the citizens of Israel who are not Jewish?  In a peace agreement, there will be simplest symmetry: Israel recognizes the Palestinian state – and the Palestinians recognize the Jewish state.  This is so simple.  It is so just, so correct and so urgent.  I say to Abu Mazen: Recognize the Jewish state.” continue reading…