PM to German FM: Tell PA to Stop anti-Israel Moves

Meeting with the German FM on Sunday, PM stresses commitment to 'two states' despite host of Palestinian unilateral moves against Israel.

Cynthia Blank ,

Steinmeier and Netanyahu shake hands
Steinmeier and Netanyahu shake hands
Marc Israel Sellem / Flash 90

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu met Sunday with German Foreign Minister Frank Walter Steinmeier, one of six international foreign ministers visiting Israel in the coming weeks with plans to renew Israeli-Palestinian peace talks. 

Netanyahu called on Steinmeier to exert pressure on Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas to halt all unilateral actions against Israel and to reignite peace talks with the Jewish state. 

"We have to send a clear message to the Palestinians and I hope you will use your meetings with them to do it," Netanyahu told Steinmeier during an announcement to the press after their meeting. 

Specifically addressing the PA's recent move to have Israel booted from international soccer, Netanyahu stressed to Steinmeier: "Tell the Palestinians to stop their campaign to delegitimize Israel and get back to the negotiating table without preconditions."

Despite the Palestinians' unilateral actions, Netanyahu noted, he was still interested in renewing negotiations, emphasizing that he was committed to "two states for two peoples."

As a symbol of their goodwill, Netanyahu asserted, Israel was willing to take confidence measures, including allowing 800 trucks filled with humanitarian goods into Gaza on a daily basis, as well as "additional steps."

Steinmeier responded by stressing to Netanyahu Germany's belief that a peace agreement be reached between Israel and Palestinians. 

Noting the difficulty of renewing negotiations, Steinmeier was quick to emphasize that it must still be attempted, adding that the rehabilitation of Gaza and the halting of armed conflict between the two sides was of utmost importance.