In a meeting with several settler leaders Wednesday, US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman said that he saw “no reason to evacuate settlements” in a peace deal, a Likud lawmaker said.
MK Yehudah Glick, who organized the sit-down with Har Hebron Regional Council chairman Yochai Damari, recounted the statement to the Times of Israel and said that the ambassador was “very explicit” in his remark regarding Israeli communities in the West Bank.
A spokeswoman for the embassy declined to comment.
Damari said the purpose of the meeting at the US embassy in Jerusalem was to present a number of Israeli-Palestinian economic ventures in the West Bank, ahead of the anticipated unveiling of the US’s peace initiative.
According to the regional council chairman, who presides over 19 Israeli settlements in the southern West Bank, the sit-down provided an opportunity to present the settler perspective.
“The reality of recent decades has taught us that any attempt to impose political solutions by people who aren’t on the ground [in Israel] and don’t breateh the conflict every day is doomed to fail, and the past two bloody decades are proof of this,” Damari said in a statement following the meeting.
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