One Roadmap, Two Opinions: Livni vs. Lieberman
Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman (Yisrael Beiteinu) and his predecessor, Kadima chairwoman Tzipi Livni, looked at the American Roadmap Tuesday and found two different directions.
The Foreign Minister has previously said that “the two-state solution" included in the Roadmap is academic, calling it more theoretical than practical due to Arab demands. “I don't see that [agreement] happening," he said during an interview Tuesday with IDF Army Radio.
Lieberman went on to explain, “The Roadmap has logic to it and stages"’ before the establishment of a Palestinian Authority state on the land of Judea, Samaria and Gaza, adding, “It also has two key documents which determine how a Palestinian entity should be built.”
The Roadmap has been altered with several detours since former U.S. President George W. Bush announced its creation more than six years ago. His Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice, last year removed a key section calling for temporary borders for a new PA state, with a final status agreement dependent on the PA’s ability to stop incitement and terror.
The United States hosted the Annapolis, Maryland Middle East summit 18 months ago calling for immediate final status talks. Foreign Minister Lieberman, by contrast, has said that the process must “progress gradually.”
He stressed that Prime Minister Netanyahu “does not rule out the Roadmap,” although he has refrained from stating that he accepts the "two-state solution" immediately.
MK Livni, who has established a “shadow cabinet” in which she is keeping tabs on her successor, told IDF Army Radio that the Roadmap is out of date because going through all the stages involved prior to the creation of a PA state would ”be an excuse not to talk. Refraining from talking will bring us to a situation in which we won't have a partner for talks,” she argued.
Prime Minister Netanyahu has proposed to PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas that direct talks resume immediately,
Abbas has rejected the idea because of the Prime Minister’s refusal to immediately accept the "two-state solution" concept. The PA chairman, in turn, has rejected Prime Minister Netanyahu’s insistence that the PA recognize Israel as a Jewish State.