Lieberman praises Kerry's peace efforts, warns of day after deal
Foreign minister warns of violence that could ensue should Arab states wish to transfer Palestinian refugees to future state.
Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman met with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry Friday morning to discuss efforts at formulating a framework agreement that would present principles for solving the core issues of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Lieberman told Kerry that he greatly appreciates the great efforts he is investing in brokering a solution to the conflict and promoting calm in the region, the Foreign Ministry said in a statement. "Continued dialogue with the Palestinians is of great importance," Lieberman told Kerry, according to the statement.
The foreign minister also told Kerry that an agreement between Israel and the Palestinians must be based on solid foundations of security for Israel and a stable economy for the Palestinians.
Lieberman underscored that even if all problems and disputes are resolved, there are still issues regarding the day after a peace agreement is signed. "These should be dealt with already at this stage," he said.
After a deal is reached, said Lieberman, Arab countries in the region may wish to transfer the Palestinian refugees currently living in their lands to the territories under Palestinian control.
"The significance of this," he said, "is that in addition to the Palestinians currently living in the territories and those in Judea and Samaria, a further 3 million refugees will be added, creating a severe humanitarian problem that will provoke more frustration, violence and a deterioration of security," Lieberman said.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met with Kerry at noon Friday. The meeting is scheduled to continue until sundown. Justice Minister and chief Israeli negotiator Tzipi Livni, Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon and Israeli negotiator Yitzhak Molcho were also present.