Daily Israel Report

Oren: We Want Peace, Now

Ambassador sounds pacific note at AIPAC conference, ahead of Obama visit.
By Gil Ronen
First Publish: 3/3/2013, 6:30 PM

Michael Oren
Michael Oren
Official Photo

"We do not want a peace process," Israel's U.S. Ambassador Michael Oren said at Sunday's AIPAC Conference. "We want peace."

"We do not want to start negotiations tomorrow; we want to start them today, now – in Jerusalem, in Ramallah and here in Washington," Oren said.

Oren  said Israel was looking forward to President Obama's visit to Israel later this month, which will be Obama's first trip in his second term.

Oren said, however, that any reconciliation between Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas would be 'a game blocker" in Israel's eyes.

On Iran, Oren said there was a still small window for diplomacy to work. "Imagine if Iran had that nuclear weapon, what is the price of inaction," he added.

He appealed to the 13,000 activists at the pro-Israel conference to reach out to African Americans, Latinos and Muslims, and others.