Netanyahu expects to reach deal with U.S. on restrained settlement construction -
’There’s no blank check from Trump for construction in the settlements and that was known from the first minute he entered the White House,’ says Israeli official.
Barak Ravid Mar 15, 2017
read more: ▻http://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-1.777320
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu expects to reach understandings with the United States within a few weeks on curbing construction in the settlements, according to an Israeli official.
Although the understandings with U.S. President Donald Trump’s administration are likely to include Israeli willingness to impose significant restrictions on construction in West Bank settlements, the Prime Minister’s Bureau believes that this will not weaken the coalition.
“There’s no blank check from Trump for construction in the settlements and that was known from the first minute he entered the White House,” said the official, who is involved in contacts between Israel and the United States on the subject. “We are looking for the common denominator with the Americans that will allow construction on the one hand, and on the other promote with the Trump administration diplomatic moves in many areas.”
Israeli-U.S. negotiations on restraining settlements.
Netanyahu met on Monday evening for more than five hours with American envoy Jason Greenblatt. Israel’s ambassador to the United States, Ron Dermer, was present for most of the meeting and the most significant part of the conversation dealt with the attempt to formulate understandings on construction in the settlements.
Netanyahu and Greenblatt are expected to meet again this week before the envoy leaves the country.
Speaking at a Tuesday press conference at his office, Netanyahu described his conversations with Greenblatt as “good and thorough.” Netanyahu added: “I can’t say that we finished or summed things up; we are in a process, but a process of true and sincere dialogue in the positive meaning of the word. It is not yet open to the press.”