Trump describes Netanyahu as 'problem'

Trump describes Netanyahu as 'problem'
Sun Oct 8, 2017 09:13:26

US President Donald Trump has described Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as the bigger anathema of the Israeli-Palestinian peace process.

Both leaders of Israel and Palestine are problematic; however, Netanyahu is the bigger problem, Trump said in a meeting last month with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, according to seven Western and Israeli sources, who were either present at or briefed on the meeting, Israeli Haaretz newspaper wrote on Friday.

On September 19, Trump had held a 15-minute meeting with Guterres on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York. According to six Western diplomats and one former senior Israeli official, all of whom asked to remain anonymous, at least half of the meeting dealt with the Israeli-Palestinian issue.

Trump, who had met with Netanyahu in New York the previous day, told Guterres his impressions of that meeting and his own views on the peace process.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas is very old and needs a legacy to leave behind. Netanyahu, in contrast, understands that he’ll never have a president more understanding of Israel’s security needs, Trump told Guterres, adding that Netanyahu would be the harder one to persuade.

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