Israeli sources reported that Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, told the U.S. president, Barack Obama, that he will conduct measures on “good will” towards the Palestinians, including “easing” the siege on Gaza.He also promised to discuss all essential issues during proximity talks with the Palestinians under the condition that final decisions and agreements should be made during direct talks with the Palestinian Authority.
Israeli daily, Haaretz, reported that U.S. Secretary of State, Hilary Clinton, phoned Netanyahu and demanded him to soften his stances. Yet, Netanyahu said that he will not void the decision to build 1600 units for Jewish settlers in East Jerusalem’s Ramat Shlomo settlement.
This is the same position he took during his talks with U.S. Vice President, Joe Biden, during his visit to the region two weeks ago.
Israeli government officials said that Netanyahu hinted that he would allow the United Nations to transfer construction materials into the Gaza Strip to reconstruct sewage systems, 150 apartments in Khan Younis, in the southern part of the Gaza Strip, and a flour mill, Haaretz said.
He also agreed to release hundreds of Palestinian detainees, affiliated with the Fateh movement of president Mahmoud Abbas.
Netanyahu will fly to the United States on Sunday at night and will be accompanied by
Israel’s Defense Minister, Ehud Barak. He will attend the conference of the American Israeli Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), along with Barak, opposition leader Tzipi LIvni, and Israel’s Infrastructure Uzi Landau, Haaretz added.
A meeting between Obama and Netanyahu will likely take place although it is not scheduled yet. Such a meeting likely to take place at the White House on Tuesday.
Haaretz also reported that Israel’s Envoy to Washington, Michael Oren, said that final solutions for t Middle East conflict cannot be forced by any country and should be reached between the Israelis and the Palestinians.
Oren also told the PBS American station that Israel does not want Washington to present its plan for peace in the Middle East.
Oren added that the United States can facilitate and supervise peace talks but cannot enforce its solution.