Netanyahu: New Gov’t Won’t Impact Talks With PA

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu leads the weekly cabinet meeting at the Prime Minister office in Jerusalem on May 22, 2016. Photo by Emil Salman/POOL *** Local Caption *** øàù äîîùìä áðéîéï ðúðéäå áéáé éùéáú îîùìä éåáì ùèééðéõ
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu (R.) leads the weekly Cabinet meeting at the Prime Minister’s Office Sunday. (Emil Salman/POOL)

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said at the weekly Cabinet meeting on Sunday that his government will continue pushing for peace with the Palestinians, even after adding the Yisrael Beytenu party to the coalition.

“From the outset, when we formed the government, I said that it was my intention to expand the government. Sixty-one is better than 59, but a government that is as broad as possible is the best thing for the State of Israel,” said Netanyahu

“We are in the midst of moves to expand the government. I think that a broader coalition will help us meet the many challenges facing us and also take advantage of the opportunities.

“I would like to make it clear that a broad government will continue to strive for a diplomatic process with the Palestinians and we will do so with the assistance of elements in the region. I personally deal with this a lot, in many places, and I intend to continue to do so.

“Today, the government will approve the amended gas outline. The new agreement incorporates the comments that we received from the Supreme Court. The important thing now is not to delay, to advance toward bringing the gas that brings with it tremendous new resources for Israel’s people – in social welfare, education, health and – in effect – in every aspect of life. I think that this is a very important – even historic – step for the Israeli economy, [and] especially [for] the people, and we will use this gift that nature has granted us for the benefit of the state and its citizens.”

The prime minister thanked Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz for this achievement. “This achievement, first of all, is yours, Yuval. As Energy Minister, you worked diligently, creatively and without respite. I very much appreciate this and I think that the citizens of Israel need to appreciate your contribution.”