Avigdor Lieberman, former Foreign Minister, declared Sunday that he believes in the “two state solution.” The joint Likud Beytenu party, formed by merging his Yisrael Beytenu faction with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s Likud, will base its policy on Netanyahu’s famed Bar Ilan speech, he said.
In his Bar Ilan speech, Netanyahu called for “a demilitarized Palestinian state side by side with the Jewish state.”
He also insisted that the Palestinian Authority recognize Israel as the home of the Jewish people, noting that it was the refusal to recognize Israel as Jewish that sparked the wars leading to the current conflict.
Israel has no imperialistic aspirations, Lieberman said. The government is ready to agree to a new Arab state, “Palestine,” when conditions are right and there is a partner for peace, he told Kol Yisrael radio.
Lieberman yet again expressed his view that PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas is not the peace partner Israel needs. “We need to explain to the world that if anyone is refusing peace, it is Abbas,” he said.
Lieberman denied reports that his Yisrael Beytenu party plans to split with Likud immediately after the elections, but said the two parties would discuss separating their Knesset factions – essentially a split. The separation is a technical matter that the parties agreed some time ago would be discussed one month after the elections, he stated.