The United States on Monday brushed off comments by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, who declared in a series of interviews he would do everything in his power to prevent the establishment of a Palestinian state.
“There are many things said leading up to elections,” State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said in her daily press briefing when asked about Netanyahu’s comments.
“Given the sensitivity of that and the fact that we’re not going to under any circumstance weigh in, I’m just not going to have a specific comment on this. Obviously, our view continues to be that the only way to have peace and stability in the region is for there to be a two-state solution,” she added.
Echoing remarks he made during an exclusive interview with Arutz Sheva on Sunday, Netanyahu told the Makor Rishon newspaper on Monday that establishing a Palestinian state would essentially be giving territory to extremists.
"I think that anyone who is going to establish a Palestinian state and open up territory is giving radical Islam a space to attack the State of Israel," he argued. "Whoever ignores this is burying his head in the sand."
"The left does this - it buries its head in the sand time and time again," the Prime Minister went on to attack. "We are realistic and understand the test is who will form the next government. I am not conceding. They wouldn't focus these great efforts against me if they didn't think I would be the preventer [of this]."
The United States has been a long-time proponent of a two-state solution to solve the Israeli-Arab conflict. In fact, on Saturday Secretary of State John Kerry reiterated that President Barack Obama is "committed" to a two-state solution.
"The position of the United States with respect to our long expressed hope, the Republicans and the Democrats alike (and) many presidents of the last 50 years or more, has always been for peace and President Obama remains committed to a two-state solution," Kerry said at a news conference in Egyptian resort town of Sharm el-Sheikh.