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News from Ynet.co.il: Livni says won’t join Netanyahu-led government

The following article is taken from ynet.co.il, Feb 27/09 (http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3678490,00.html)

The article speaks of Tzipi Livni’s meeting with Bibi Netanyahu.

photo by Yaron Brener:

Tzipi Livni meets with Benyamin Netanyahu, Feb 27/09

Tzipi Livni meets with Benyamin Netanyahu, Feb 27/09

“Two states (one for the Israelis and one of the Palestinians) is not an empty slogan,” Livni said as she left the meeting. “Unity is not just sitting in a government together. It also means sharing a way.”

 

The two officials met at a Tel Aviv hotel for about two hours.

 

“I came to meet with the Likud chairman for a second time in order to hear about his vision and the way he wishes to implement. Israel is facing challenges. I told him Kadima would support any right moves by the government.

 

“In order to deal with the challenges I wanted three fundamental things which you are aware of,” she said. “Two states is not an empty slogan. It’s the only way Israel can remain Jewish and fight terror. It’s a matter of principle.

 

“We discussed the issues. I didn’t see any commitment on Bibi’s part to these issues. The meeting ended without any understandings, and we cannot be part of Netanyahu’s government,” Livni stated, vowing to act as “a responsible opposition”.

The Likud leader’s associates made it clear before the meeting that he would not accept the “two states for two people” formula. Senior Kadima officials clarified that Netanyahu’s commitment to a peace process was insufficient, stressing that the world now views the Annapolis process as the foundation of any negotiations.

 

“There is no other process apart from this one, and the saying that Netanyahu supports a diplomatic process is insufficient and will not serve as a basis for Kadima’s inclusion in the government instead of an explicit statement addressing the process’ nature,” one of the Kadima officials said.

 

Knesset Member Tzachi Hangebi, one of Kadima’s senior members, told Ynet before the meeting, “We are heading to the opposition, for certain. Something really dramatic will have to take place for this to change.”

 

Various sources who have spoken to Netanyahu this week found it difficult to determine whether he was optimistic ahead of his meeting with Livni. One of them stated, however, that “it appears that he plans to make more compromises. He really wants Kadima to join the government and to establish a wide government.”

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