Binyamin Netanyahu at Likud faction meeting
Binyamin Netanyahu at Likud faction meeting Hadas Parush/Flash90

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu responded to Education Minister Naftali Bennett's call for the government to apply Israeli sovereignty immediately to the city of Maaleh Adumim at the Likud faction meeting Monday afternoon.

The Prime Minister spoke of the phone conversation he had with US President Donald Trump last night, in which Trump assured him that peace between Israel and its Arab neighbors can only be achieved through direct negotiations.

"After eight years of pressure I welcome the change in attitude in the White House," Netanyahu said. "We are faced with great opportunities, but they require responsibility and discretion."

Addressing Bennett's call to apply Israeli sovereignty immediately to Maaleh Adumim, Netanyahu said: "We are facing opportunities for the State of Israel, but they require a judgment call. This is not the time for knee-jerk reactions, [hasty] orders, and surprises. We need responsible and prudent diplomacy. For the good of the State of Israel, and for the good of the settlements, I suggest that everyone put aside all other considerations and allow me to lead. We are entering a new era and we are strengthening our foreign relations."

Netanyahu postponed the vote on the bill to apply sovereignty to Maaleh Adumim yesterday until after his first face-to-face meeting with President Trump. However, he also announced that he backed the plan to annex the city of 40,000.

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