At a meeting with Israeli ambassadors to European Union countries, Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said Sunday that neither the Palestinian Authority (PA), nor the Arab countries, were interested in pursuing peace with Israel. The PA's plan to seek recognition of a Palestinian state at the UN, he said, was a clear indication that the PA was not interested in advancing talks with Israel, since it was a gross violation of agreements the PA has signed with Israel.
In preparation for the PA's diplomatic onslaught at the UN later this month, in which PA and Arab officials will exert pressure on European countries to agree to recognize a PA state Mahmoud Abbas said he wants to declare, Lieberman presented the Israeli diplomats with a in-depth picture of the current diplomatic and political situation in relations between Israel, the PA, and countries in the region. Speaking to the diplomats at the meeting in Vienna, Lieberman laid out Israel's arguments against the PA's plan, and discussed steps the ambassadors should take to present Israel's case to legislators and the media in the countries where they represent Israel.
Lieberman told the diplomats that throughout the four years that the current government has served, Israel has numerous times sought to restart talks with the PA – always to be put off, delayed, dodged, or outright rejected. And not only did the PA do everything it could to avoid talks – it arrogantly blamed the fact that no talks were taking place on Israel. “Their entire plan is to upset Israel's standing in the international community,” Lieberman said.
Lieberman also discussed the renewed rocket terror attacks on southern Israel by Gaza Arab terrorists, and especially the fact that PA chief Mahmoud Abbas has not bothered to condemn the attacks, much less to take steps to end the rocket fire from territory he is supposed to be in charge of. “This again poses the question who Abbas even represents among Palestinians, what his responsibility is for what has been happening, and what our agreements with him are worth altogether,” Lieberman said.