Obama spokesman admits: Two-state solution unlikely

November 9, 2015  

White House spokesman Josh Earnest admitted on Monday that it is unlikely that the “two-state solution” for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict can be reached before President Barack Obama leaves office.

Speaking to reporters following Obama’s meeting with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, Earnest said officials in the Obama administration concluded that “a two-state solution was not going to happen while President Obama was still in office, and that even the possibility of talks about a two-state solution between the Israelis and Palestinians was unlikely over the course of the next 14 or 15 months.”

He added, however, that the United States remains committed to taking advantage of any opportunities that may arise to move the peace talks forward.

Earnest’s comments are in line with ones made last week by officials in the White House. Those officials, quoted by Haaretz, admitted that Obama had concluded that in his time left in office the Israelis and the Palestinians will not be able to reach a peace treaty and would, therefore, encourage Netanyahu to take steps to prevent a “one-state solution” during their meeting at the White House.

Nevertheless, Netanyahu said he was still committed to the idea of “two states for two peoples” during the meeting with Obama.

“I want to make it clear. We haven’t given up our hope for peace. We’ll never give up our hope for peace,” he said, adding, “I remain committed to a vision of peace of two states for two peoples, a demilitarized Palestinian state that recognizes the Jewish state.”

 “I don’t think that anyone should doubt Israel’s determination to defend itself against terror and destruction, but neither should anyone doubt Israel’s willingness to make peace with any of its neighbors that genuinely want to achieve peace with us,” he added. “And I look forward to discussing with you practical ways in which we can lower the tension, increase stability, and move towards peace.”

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