Israel: Any Peace Deal Needs Cabinet Approval

Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu wanted to make it clear that any agreement to extend the peace negotiations would need the approval of the Cabinet.

Netanyahu said that any deal that extends the peace process and involves any additional gestures on Israel’s part, such as releasing more prisoners would go before the Cabinet for approval. Netanyahu told this on Sunday morning to his Likud Party Ministers.

Netanyahu suggested that speculation could be avoided by waiting until the full picture is clearer and that he said could take place over the couple of days.

Either this will be settled or it will fall apart, but no deal will be made until it is completely transparent as to what Israel will get in return.

Israel agreed this past July to the release of 104 Palestinian prisoners as a part of the ongoing peace talks that were led by John Kerry the U.S. Secretary of State.

Thus far, the Israelis have released prisoners in three groups that have totaled 74 with 30 remaining from the original 104. Those 30 were scheduled to be released Friday in the last installment. The Palestinians demanded Israel including in the last 30, 14 who were Israeli Arabs.

However, as the fourth group’s deadline date approached, with an indication by the Palestinians that would not continue peace talks beyond the deadline of April 29, Israel said it would not be releasing the last group until it was agreed upon by the Palestinians to extend the current talks.

Israel through the U.S. conveyed that if there was an agreement by the Palestinians to extend the talks beyond April 29, it would then release additional prisoners over and above the 30 who were promised.

However, in a cabinet meeting, one Minister said he would prefer that settlement construction was frozen instead of releasing more prisoners, but forces within the government are preventing that from happening.

Another minister requested that the prisoners be released as agreed saying that Netanyahu needed to make decisions even though they might be difficult ones.

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