Yitzhak Herzog
Yitzhak HerzogYonatan Sindel/Flash 90

While Labor leader Yitzhak Herzog remains committed to establishing a Palestinian state in Judea and Samaria, he isn't sure the Palestinians are interested.

“I'm not sure that we have a partner for peace,” he said during an interview with Israel Hayom. 

“I was in Gush Etzion and declared that the major settlement blocs will remain a part of Israel in any event,” Herzog said. “But we must ensure that Israel does not become a binational state." 

"In truth, I am not sure there is a party on the other side that is interested in peace. So far they have been very happy with their one-sided strategy,” in which the Palestinians make demands that they expect Israel to accept, without negotiations.

Herzog then addressed upcoming elections on March 17 and his party's chances. 

Over the past few weeks, “we see that Likud and right-wing voters are coming over to us, so Prime Minister Netanyahu is reviving the old Likud rhetoric of 'it's us or them.' But the voters are looking for something else now. They have had enough of Netanyahu, and they, along with anyone else who wants change, must vote for us.”

Israel has attempted several times to come to a deal with the Palestinian Authority, which would allow the PA to take control of the vast majority of Judea and Samaria. 

The PA has never accepted such deals, because Israel insists that any surrender of land include an agreement by the PA that they will make no further demands on Israel.

The PA has refused to do so, and its official position – which has not changed since the Oslo Accords were implemented in 1994 – is a complete withdrawal of Israel from all of Judea and Samaria, including areas of Jerusalem liberated in the 1967 Six Day War, except for minor “border adjustments.”

In addition, the PA demands a full return to their former homes of Arabs who fled Israel in 1948, along with their descendants.