President Shimon Peres does not plan to seek another term in office, he told Israeli media outlets Tuesday night. “I will not seek to extend my term,” Peres said in interviews on Channels 2 and 10. “The Presidency is not a sinecure, but an opportunity to serve and influence.” Peres has done that, he said in the interview, and it was time to let someone else serve.
Peres discussed a wide range of issues in the interview, including the negotiations with the Palestinian Authority. Despite the shocks it has taken, Peres said, “the Oslo Accords are still a fact that the government respects and operates by. We must begin negotiations with the PA on the basis of Oslo as soon as possible. There is no time to waste.”
Peres also related to several recent cases of attacks against the elderly. “This is a scandal that we must marshal all our resources to fight against. We must take this issue very seriously.”
One of Israel's secrets to survival was the risk-taking Israelis took, and that needed to continue. “We must continue to dare and not listen to the accepted wisdom,” Peres said. “Israel is the greatest protest against the conventional, and will continue to be so.”
Regarding his personal plans, Peres said that he had a lot on his agenda, despite the fact that he will not be serving as President. "Rest? What for? Why waste my time when I have so much more to accomplish for the nation.” Peres said.
The President, 89, gave the media a special interview in honor of the 65th Independence Day. His term as president is up next year.