Excerpts: Pres. Aoun claims Hizbullah loyal to fight Israel.Pres.Trump re
‘peace process’ February 12, 2017
+++SOURCE:Naharnet(Lebanon) 12 Feb.’17:”Pres.Aoun Says’More Than Guaranteed’Hizullah
Won’t Turn Its Arms Inwards:.by Naharnet Newsdesk
SUBJECT:Pres.Aoun claims Hizbullah loyal to fight Israel
FULL TEXT:President Michel Aoun has stressed that Hizbullah’s weapons “do
not contradict with the State,” noting that it is “more than guaranteed”
that Hizbullah will not “turn its arms inwards.”
“As long as there is Israeli-occupied land and as long as the army is not
strong enough to fight Israel, we sense that there is a need for the
presence of the resistance’s arms so that they complete the army’s weapons,”
Aoun said in an interview on the Egyptian TV channel CBC.
“Hizbullah are the residents of the South and are among the Lebanese
citizens whose land was occupied and part of the land is still occupied,”
the president noted, emphasizing that “certainly Hizbullah’s arms do not
contradict with the State and are an essential component of the means to
Aoun added: “We have a land occupied by Israel and when Israel usurps
certain territory, it would be difficult to recapture it. This is how we
must view Hizbullah’s weapons.”
“It is more than guaranteed that Hizbullah will not turn its arms inwards,”
the president reassured.
+++SOURCE: Jordan Times 12Feb.’17 “Trump says Israel should be ‘reasonable’
in peace process”,by Reuters
SUBJECT:Pres.Trump: re ‘peace process
OCCUPIED JERUSALEM — US President Donald Trump called on “Israel to be
reasonable with respect to peace”, spelling out in his own words his
administration’s stance that new settlements on Palestinian land may not be
helpful in an interview with an Israeli newspaper.
Trump’s comments to Israel Today come as he tones down his pro-Israel
bravado ahead of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s trip to the White House
on February 15.
“I want Israel to be reasonable with respect to peace. I want to see peace
happen,” Trump said in the interview published on Friday[1o Feb]. “I would
like to see a level of reasonableness of both parties, and I think we have a
good chance of doing that.”
During his 2016 election campaign, Trump signalled his presidency would be a
boon for Israel and tough on Palestinians. He talked of moving the US
embassy to Jerusalem, naming an ambassador who backs Israel’s settlement
programme and exerting no pressure on Israel for peace talks.
Now Trump is adopting a more measured stance. Even though the White House
did not join the widespread criticism this week of a new Israeli law which
retroactively legalises about 4,000 existing settler units, its pro-Israel
approach shows signs of being more nuanced.
“They don’t help the process. I can say that,” Trump told the Israeli daily
owned by US casino mogul Sheldon Adelson, a Netanyahu supporter and
Republican Party donor.
“Every time you take land for settlements, there is less land left,” Trump
said. “I am not somebody that believes that going forward with these
settlements is a good thing for peace.”
The president said his administration was “looking at some other options”
regarding the settlements.
He also said he was still studying the case for relocating the US embassy to
Jerusalem, a move that could anger the Arab world.
“The embassy is not an easy decision. It has obviously been out there for
many, many years, and nobody has wanted to make that decision. I’m thinking
about it very seriously, and we will see what happens,” Trump said.
Sue Lerner – Associate, IMRA