Group of coalition, opposition MKs aims to pass resolution against Palestinian state

61 lawmakers have reportedly already signed on to such legislation, with supporters seeking to pass it before Netanyahu’s speech to Congress later this month

Yisrael Beytenu party leader Avigdor Liberman (L) shakes hands with Likud lawmaker Yuli Edelstein at the Knesset on March 14, 2013. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
Yisrael Beytenu party leader Avigdor Liberman (L) shakes hands with Likud lawmaker Yuli Edelstein at the Knesset on March 14, 2013. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

A group of lawmakers from both coalition and opposition parties is advancing a resolution expressing opposition to the establishment of a Palestinian state, which they aim to pass ahead of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s visit to Washington to address a joint session of Congress later this month.

The Knesset already passed a resolution opposing the establishment of a Palestinian state earlier this year, but Netanyahu was careful to ensure that the initiative specified that the opposition was only to the unilateral creation of a Palestinian state outside of negotiations with Israel, amid unconfirmed reports that the US was considering unilaterally recognizing a Palestinian state.

This new resolution would offer more absolute opposition to the establishment of a Palestinian state, and would likely harm Netanyahu’s efforts to maintain some diplomatic flexibility in his dealings with the Biden administration and the international community, which largely supports a two-state solution.

The resolution is being pushed by Yisrael Beytenu chairman Avigdor Liberman, New Hope chairman Gideon Sa’ar and New Hope MK Ze’ev Elkin from the opposition, and Religious Zionism MK Simcha Rothman and Likud MK Yuli Edelstein from the coalition, Channel 12 reported this week.

The network added that 61 lawmakers from both the coalition and opposition have already signed onto the resolution, which makes it possible to pass it before the end of the summer parliamentary session on July 28.

Netanyahu is slated to address Congress on July 24.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu enters the Knesset plenum on June 24, 2024. (Chaim Goldberg/Flash90)

The resolution states that the “State of Israel strongly opposes the establishment of a Palestinian state west of Jordan, which would pose an existential threat to Israel,” according to Channel 12.

The lawmakers claim in the resolution that the establishment of a Palestinian state would only extend the conflict with the Palestinians and destabilize the region, adding that it would only be a matter of time before Hamas takes over this new Palestinian state and turns it into a base for radical Islamic terror backed by Iran.

Netanyahu has in the past spoken out against the creation of a Palestinian state, and several Israeli officials have pushed back on the idea that talks on ending fighting in Gaza sparked by Hamas’s brutal October 7 rampage should be used to jumpstart long-moribund efforts to reach a two-state solution.

While some international actors believe the violence only underlines the need for a peace deal, Israeli leaders argue the attack highlighted the extreme danger of an autonomous Palestinian entity posing a threat to its population centers. And amid soaring support for Hamas among Palestinians in the wake of the atrocities, there appears to be little appetite in the Israeli public for any peace efforts.

Support for Palestinian statehood has gained traction in the international community, with several European countries unilaterally recognizing a Palestinian state in recent months, including Ireland, Spain and Norway.

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