Days after winning Israel’s election, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu appears to be backtracking from hardline statements that ruled out the establishment of a Palestinian state.
Mr Netanyahu has said in a TV interview that he remains committed to Palestinian statehood – if conditions in the region improve. He told MSNBC: “I haven’t changed my policy.”
During the final days of the campaign, Mr Netanyahu said he would not agree to establish a Palestinian state in the current climate – a position that drew heavy criticism from Washington. The two-state solution is a key US foreign policy objective.
Mr Netanyahu said he believes Israel cannot yield captured land to the Palestinians because it will be taken over by Islamic extremists, but said he would support Palestinian independence if circumstances change.