Gantz: Israel will proceed with the annexation process without waiting for the Palestinians

The occupation army minister and alternative Prime Minister Benny Gantz said today that Israel will proceed with the process of annexing the West Bank lands to Israeli sovereignty without waiting for the Palestinians if they are not ready to discuss the issue of annexation.

"We will not continue to wait for the Palestinians if they continue to refuse dialogue on the issue of annexation," Gantz told a press conference.

"The annexation will not affect the lives of Israelis and Palestinians in the West Bank," Gantz said, noting that the Israeli annexation plan "will break the political deadlock."

He indicated that he would work to "reduce the risk of Israel becoming a binational state and preserve its security by holding close dialogues with the United States of America, countries of the world and the Palestinians."

Gantz stressed that "Israel will not include any Palestinians to its territory, and that his country will not risk peace agreements, and will act in coordination with all countries of the region in order to implement the annexation process."

Gantz's comments came one week before the imposition of Israeli sovereignty over the West Bank and the Jordan Valley, scheduled for the first of next July.

In the same context, the Hebrew Public Radio reported that senior officers in the occupation army told Gantz that the process of implementing the annexation plan will need weeks of security and months of civil preparations.

According to the Hebrew Radio, Gantz has held discussions in recent weeks with the leaders of the Israeli security services on the annexation process, which spanned more than 20 hours.

She indicated that the occupation army officers told Gantz that they needed time to recruit the reserve forces and to tighten and deploy the other forces and preparations on the ground, which may last for several weeks after the decision to annex.


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