Daily Israel Report

Peres: PA Leaders Want Peace

President Shimon Peres at the 12th Annual Herzliya Conference: The world's central problem is Iran. No options can be ruled out.
By Elad Benari
First Publish: 2/1/2012, 1:15 AM

President Shimon Peres on Tuesday gave the keynote address at the 12th Annual Herzliya Conference.

In his speech, Peres spoke of the Iranian nuclear problem and about the peace process between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.

“At this time ours and the world’s central problem is Iran,” said Peres. “Iran seeks regional hegemony and even global hegemony. Iran is trying to acquire weapons of mass destruction to intimidate the public and implement its imperialist ambitions, which wear religious robes.”

He added, “We cannot rule out any option in dealing with the Iranian threat. This is an existential threat. Nuclear weapons cannot reach the ruling ayatollahs in Iran. This is the most morally corrupt government in the world.”

Addressing the peace process, President Peres reiterated his belief that the leaders of the Palestinian Authorities seek peace with Israel.

“I’ve known for decades the people who head the PA,” he said. “I believe that [PA Chairman] Abbas and Prime Minister Fayyad are worthy peace partners and do not want to continue the conflict. I know from the conversations I had with them that this is their primary hope.”

Peres added, “Our relationship is in motion. We’ve created a national consensus between us and them that peace can be achieved peace based on a two-state solution for two peoples: a Jewish state – Israel, and an Arab state – Palestine. It’s time that this ideological decision becomes a reality.”