At a joint news conference Wednesday night in Berlin with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said that Israel and the Palestinians both “need to make a contribution” in order to restore calm after weeks of unrest. Merkel urged Netanyahu to rethink his government’s policy on Jewish settlements in Judea and Samaria, calling them “counterproductive” to the two-state solution.
“I have spoken out against them many times and if it is about doing everything possible right now to calm the situation, then I think all sides need to make a contribution,” she said. She also agreed Israel has an “obligation” to protect its own citizens and said the Palestinians must condemn “everything constituting the support of terror.”
Netanyahu insisted that it is Palestinian incitement and not Israeli policies which are the cause of the current wave of violence. He said the international community must demand of Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas to stop inciting terrorism and stop spreading lies about Israel and its policies. “If we want peace we must stop the terror. To stop terrorism, stop incitement,” Netanyahu stressed.