Peres: "A binational state – against Herzl's vision"

Hundreds gathered at mount Herzl today to commemorate 109 years since the passing of the “visionary of the sate”. Peres: “A binational solution jeopardizes Israel’s Jewish character.

Peres on mount Herzl Channel 2 News

Hundreds gathered today (Thursday) at mount Herzl to commemorate 109 years since the passing of Benjamin Ze’ev (Theodore) Herzl.  In the Ceremony, President Peres declared that a binational state contradicts Herzl’s vision.

 “A binational state jeopardizes Israel’s Jewish and democratic character” the President said in his speech in which he went on to say that Herzl spoke about a ‘state of the Jews’ not just a Jewish state and that a historical right alone  will not due to substantiate the political reality.

“A new chance to reopen the peace process stands before us and we must not miss it” Peres said and applauded the arrival of American secretary of state John Kerry. “It is our regret that Herzl’s hope has not been fulfilled and it will only come true through the power of justice and the ways of Peace. Herzl understood that there was no other solution for the Jews than the establishment of a Jewish state, no other solution is a solution and as such the Zionist solution must be bold, extensive and unprecedented.”

Prime Minister Netanyahu joined Peres in his objection to the idea of a binational state saying: “We want peace because we want to live in peace. We do not want a binational state, but we will not delude ourselves into believing that if an agreement is achieved with the Palestinians it will put to bed all gross slander against the Jewish state.”  

Netanyahu reiterated the importance of security beside the importance of peace. “Peace is based on security, not good will. Without security we will not be able to defend ourselves if the peace unravels. I think that most Israelis understand this and I believe that Herzl understood this too and we are faithful to his view”.

Kerry: “The time for decisions is approaching”

American secretary of state John Kerry will start a new round of diplomatic visits in the Middle East with his arrival in Israel today. On this, his 5th visit since he took on the role of secretary of state, Kerry will attempt to accelerate the peace talks.

Benjamin Ze’ev Herzl. Photography: AP / Channel 2 News

 Yesterday Kerry arrived in Jordan, his base for talks between Israel and the Palestinians, and he will leave there this evening to join Prime Minister Netanyahu for a dinner in Jerusalem.  Tomorrow, Kerry will be joining head of the Palestinian Authority Abu Mazen for a lunch in Amman.

In a press conference held two days ago in Kuwait Kerry expressed hope that both sides will be able to help progress the peace talks, but denied the reports that he, Netanyahu and Abu Mazen are set to have a joint meeting. “The time for decisions is approaching” he said.

Click Here for more reports by Ainav Weisberg, JerusalemOnline

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