Netanyahu: Palestinian unwillingness to accept Jewish state is the root to their conflict with Israel

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in an address to Israel’s parliament in a special ceremony commemorating the centennial of the Balfour Declaration, stressed that the root of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict lays in the Palestinian leadership’s unwillingness to recognize the right of the Jewish people to a state of their own in the land of their ancient forefathers, the land of Israel. The Israeli leader asserted that “When the Palestinian leadership refer to the Balfour declaration as a crime, when they call on the British government to apologize for it, they don’t move forward, they move backwards, 100 years backwards. This is the root of our conflict. They one hundred years of refusal to recognize Zionism, to recognize a national home for the Jewish people in the land of Israel, and in continuation until this very day, (unwillingness) to recognize the state of Israel in any borders,” the Prime Minister said. Nevertheless, Netanyahu emphasized that the Jewish state continues its pursuit for peace, as was accomplished with Jordan and Egypt, to normalize relations with all of the Arab world, while underlining his hope that the Palestinians too will adopt a similar approach. He said, “We are strengthening, which is an understatement, our relations with the moderate entities in the region. As we have established a peace agreement with Egypt and Jordan, we are working to achieve peace with additional countries. Additional Arab states that stand together with us in the face of Islamic extremism. I can only hope that finally also the Palestinians will adopt this approach and will turn to peace,” the Israeli leader said to the Knesset plenum. Netanyahu also took the opportunity to emphasize that the key to the future of the Jewish people is manifested in the Jewish state. He declared, “The key to the future of the Jewish people is manifested in the Jewish state. Our basic responsibility is to stand firm in the face of those who seek to harm us, and to assure the existence and future of the state of Israel,” Netanyahu said.