Geneva Initiative Annexes
Geneva Initiative Annexes

Search:

Safed Mayor: "As a member of the right wing, I recommend listening to the Geneva Initiative"

In late May, we organized a seminar for Israeli Mayors from across the political spectrum, the participants included the mayors of Afula, Safed, Petah Tikva, Had Hasharon, Karmiel and many more.

 

In late May, we organized a seminar for Israeli Mayors from across the political spectrum, with the participants including the mayors of Afula, Safed, Petah Tikva, Had Hasharon, Karmiel and many more. The participating mayors came from the Likud, Yisrael Beitenu, Shas, Labor and Green parties amongst others and represented a cross section of Israeli society: Ultra-orthodox, the center and the periphery and the Druze community in Israel. During the seminar the participants toured the greater Jerusalem area, met with senior Palestinians and former Israeli security experts.  

Finish Ambassador Leena-Kaisa Mikkola and
Geneva Initiative Director General Gadi Baltiansky at the seminar.

During the lecture by Hisham Abdel Razak, a former Palestinian minister, the Mayor of Safed Ilan Shochat (Yisrael Beitenu), told Mr Abdel Razak "Many years ago I campaigned to have a lecture of yours at Haifa University cancelled. Today I came to engage in a dialogue with you about the two state solution."

Mayor Shochat later gave a radio interview where he added: "I learnt things that I did not know. Many people do not understand that anything that is built over the green line and is not territorially contiguous [to Israel] will be returned in an agreement. As a mayor I am disappointed at the energy, the billions that are invested there. If even 10% of what is invested there was brought instead to the Galil or other areas in the periphery of Israel, life in Israel would look different."

"One more point. I am going to reveal a secret. There are almost no more real gaps. We are only talking about a few percent here or there. The security issues are agreed, refugees, borders. Only a few percent more is needed to reach an agreement, but the bottom line is that we need brave leadership to take us forward just one more stage."

.

Tour of the Jeruaslem Area with Col. (res.) Shaul Arieli