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TH: No, no.

DJ: You’re not suggesting that.

TH: No, no one has such an intention. First of all, the settlements will remain. It’s very clear that we are a right-wing government and I would say eventually it will be under Israeli sovereignty, whatever the agreement, as long as my Prime Minister is leading it. It’s very clear that removing settlements is not the solution because we saw what happened in Gaza.

DJ: Exactly, yes.

TH: We were told that Gaza would become the Middle East’s Singapore. There are no similarities between Singapore, a modern, successful country, and Gaza, which is this horrible place of terrorism taking control by democratic elections. So everyone is aware of the catastrophe of Gaza and I think that if this is what the Palestinians are capable of when they have been given choice and elections and so on, Western societies should ask themselves, is this what we really want in the Middle East? More and more pockets of land ruled by terror organisations?

Let me tell you something about thinking from the other side. I always like to think about what is motivating them. They all intend good, some of them are anti-Semitic, but let’s put that aside. I think what they really want is the benefit of the Palestinian people. They want them to have a better future, a better life. You know something? So do I. I too would like my neighbours to have a good life. But only offering them international forums to solve their problems is like treating a grown-up as a child. It is saying, we’ll take responsibility for you, we’ll give you money. No! They’re grown-ups. They need to take care of their positive agenda. What is the Palestinian positive agenda? Their agenda is internationalisation of the conflict, to make the world solve their problems, make the world put money in. We built our country with a lot of creativity and, of course, co-operation with the world but eventually it was based on things which we created. I think we should encourage that on the other side. What the world must realise is that without having these foundations in Palestinian society, you’ll end up with another Gaza. No one wants another Gaza. It doesn’t create a better life for Palestinians. It doesn’t create stability. So I think those are the two main issues: one, what is the future of the young Palestinians? And the second is, what will promote stability? In order to have a good answer to those two questions you need to think long-term, you need to remove the question of settlements because it is really irrelevant, I’m sorry if I’m saying something controversial but it is really irrelevant, we saw that in Gaza. And we should take care of the relevant things — education,  leadership, responsibility, a positive agenda, all those things that are missing from the picture today.

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