Hotovely Slugs It Out on Al Jazeera

YERUSHALAYIM -

Israel’s Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely had a heated exchange about the cause of Palestinian terrorism with an interviewer on the Al Jazeera network.

Hotovely quickly grew indignant over the opening suggestion that Israel apologize for characterizing UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s recent remarks constituting a “tailwind” for terrorism. Ban blamed Palestinian violence on “frustration” with the lack of a peace process, for which Israel was supposedly the culprit.

Hotovely asserted that the “frustration” claim is “absolutely wrong,” and that the proof is the fact that soon after the signing of the Oslo Accords in the 1990s, “when the Palestinians had the best hope for a Palestinian state,” the terrorism did not stop, according to The Jerusalem Post.

“It means that terrorism is the main issue, not frustration,” she said.

When confronted with quotes from Israeli defense officials which seemed consistent with Ban’s comments, and asked if they too were “apologists” for terrorism, Hotovely said that in a democracy there were divergent opinions and the interviewer had selected the quotations reflecting only one side.

The Al Jazeera journalist seemed to be shouting at Hotovely, asking repeatedly whether she personally supported a Palestinian state.

“I’m representing a government that is declaring in a very clear way on a policy of a two-state solution… I am representing the policy of my government.”

Asked what she wanted to see happen to the Palestinians in Yehudah and Shomron, Hotovely said, “Very simple, I want to see the Palestinians become my neighbors, not my enemies; right now they are choosing to be my enemies, not my neighbors.”