Smile Mr.President that you have loyal friends
The Tundra Tabloids posted earlier that we will have to see which side blinks first, and truth be told, Netanyahu doesn’t look like he will be caught wildly batting his eyes anytime soon. But that’s not to say he won’t face increasing pressures from the US administration, but I must say that I admire his overhand delivery back to Obama. KGS
* Netanyahu rejects full freeze to settlement growth
* Obama wants halt to settlement activity
* Palestinians see settlements as threat to statehood
JERUSALEM, May 24 (al-Reuters) – Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday rebuffed U.S. calls to impose a freeze on all settlement activity in the occupied West Bank, setting the stage for friction with President Barack Obama.
“We do not intend to build any new settlements, but it wouldn’t be fair to ban construction to meet the needs of natural growth or for there to be an outright construction ban,” Netanyahu told his cabinet, according to officials.
The note of defiance came less than a week after Netanyahu held talks in Washington with Obama, who wants Israel to halt all settlement activity, including natural growth, as called for under a long-stalled peace “road map”.
Netanyahu’s comments reaffirmed a position he took in his bid for the premiership in a February election. By natural growth, Israel refers to construction within the boundaries of existing settlements to accommodate growing families.
Obama was expected to prod Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to resume long-stalled peace talks during a major speech in Cairo early next month.