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MK Rivlin: US 'Linkage' of Iran, Land Withdrawals 'Worrying'

MK Reuven Rivlin concerned that the US is linking efforts to prevent Iran from achieving nuclear arms with Israeli land concessions.
By David Lev
First Publish: 9/29/2013, 3:48 PM

MK Reuven Rivlin
MK Reuven Rivlin
Hezki Ezra

MK Reuven Rivlin (Likud), a member of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, on Sunday expressed worry over an apparent linkage the United States had made between the Iranian nuclear issue and demands by Palestinian Authority leaders for mass Israeli withdrawals from Judea and Samaria.

In his UN speech last week, U.S. President Barack H. Obama said that Washington had two main priorities in the Mideast: Containing the Iranian nuclear threat, and ensured that the PA achieve an independent state.

“While these issues are not the cause of all the region’s problems, they have been a major source of instability for far too long, and resolving them can help serve as a foundation for a broader peace,” Obama said, clearly linking the two.

“Friends of Israel, including the United States, must recognize that Israel’s security… depends on the realization of a Palestinian state,” he said.

In his post, Rivlin said that the linkage was “worrying, to say the least. This stance justifies Iranian threats to attack us with non-conventional weapons if we do not fulfill international demands on the Palestinian issue to their satisfaction. Such threats can endanger Israel's existence,” he said.

“In addition,” he said, “the Americans are sending a message to the Palestinians that there is no need for them to negotiate, since the Iranian nuclear issue will be leveraged to give them what they want.”

Earlier, MK Avigdor Lieberman (Likud Beiteinu) wrote his own Facebook post on the matter.

“Iran's race to nuclear arms is once again at the head of the international agenda,” he wrote. “As the nations of the world are focused on the new Iranian leader's attempts to appear more open to a relationship with the West, we must remember the long history of Iran's attempts to fool everyone – their tactics of making promises and delaying fulfilling them, and their supplying of phony information to the international community. Iran's current 'charm offensive' is just another trick,” he added.