Conflict 'hurts Israel's legitimacy'

Tzipi Livni, the Israeli foreign minister, has said that continuing conflict with the Palestinians will erode foreign acceptance of Israel's right to exist as a Jewish state.

    Livni was a former official in the Mossad intelligence service

    Unless progress was made towards establishing a Palestinian state as mandated by a US-backed peace road map, Livni said in a speech on Monday, pressure could grow to turn Israel into a bi-national state in which Israelis and Palestinians would share power.

     

    With a higher Palestinian birth rate, that could mean the end of a Jewish majority in what is now Israel, she said, giving voice to an argument Ehud Olmert, the interim prime minister, has raised for trading occupied land for peace.

     

    Livni said: "I say that time works to our disadvantage, not only from the standpoint of demographic numbers ... but also from the standpoint of the legitimacy of a state for the Jewish people in the eyes of the international community."

     

    "[Israel should not] sit and look to stagnation as a kind of solution, but try to find solutions"

    Tzipi Livni,
    Israel's foreign minister

     

    She stopped short of urging a quick resumption of stalled peace talks, but said Israel should not "sit and look to stagnation as a kind of solution, but try to find solutions".

     

    Livni, a former official in the Mossad intelligence service, is widely seen in Israel as a rising political star. She is number two behind Olmert in Kadima, the centrist party founded by Ariel Sharon, who was incapacitated by a stroke on 4 January.

     

    Opinion polls predict Kadima will win national elections in Israel on 28 March.

    SOURCE: Reuters


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Survivor stories from Super Typhoon Haiyan

    Survivor stories from Super Typhoon Haiyan

    The Philippines’ Typhoon Haiyan was the strongest storm ever to make landfall. Five years on, we revisit this story.

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    Russian-Saudi relations could be very different today, if Stalin hadn't killed the Soviet ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    We Are Still Here: A Story from Native Alaska

    We Are Still Here: A Story from Native Alaska

    From Qatar to Alaska, a personal journey exploring what it means to belong when your culture is endangered.