Peres to UN Official: Israel Supports Creation of Palestinian State Through Negotiations

In meet with UN Deputy Secretary-General Asha-Rose Migiro, president said UN must not create false hope for Palestinians that a unilateral declaration will bring about establishment of a state.

President Shimon Peres told United Nations Deputy Secretary-General Asha-Rose Migiro on Sunday that Israel supports the creation of a Palestinian state but maintained that the only way for it to be created was through negotiations with Israel.

"The gaps between the sides are not so great and there is no doubt that at the end of negotiations, there will be significant differences between the opening and closing positions," Peres told Migiro, who was on an official visit to the region.

Peres with Migiro - AP - May 29, 2011

The president added that the UN must refrain from creating the false hope among Palestinians that a unilateral declaration will bring about the establishment of a state. He went on to accuse the UN of not providing for Israel's security needs, failing to prevent terror, infiltration of weapons and senseless demonstrations whose sole purpose is provocation.

The issue of Israel's naval blockade of Gaza was raised, with Peres insisting that "International law allows a state to prevent entry of ships that are unchecked," if there is a suspicion that weapons are aboard.

UN chief Ban Ki-moon recently called on governments to discourage pro-Palestinian activists from sending a new aid flotilla to Gaza a year after Israeli commandos killed nine people aboard a previous convoy.

Israel left Gaza, Peres told Migiro, but under Hamas leadership, it has turned into a nest of terror.

The UN Deputy Secretary-General noted that her visit to Israel was intended to increase ties between Israel and the organization.