December 23, 2019
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu expressed optimism about the future of Israel's relations with Arab states during at the weekly Security Cabinet meeting Sunday.
"Members of the government, yesterday we saw an additional public expression of the warming in relations between Israel and Arab countries. The UAE Foreign Minister, Abdullah bin Zayed, spoke about a new alliance in the Middle East: An Israeli-Arab alliance. This is the direct result of our policy, which has turned Israel into a rising power in the region and the world," Netajnyahu said at the start of the meeting.
"I cannot go into detail about all of the moves that I have led together with my colleagues over the years. I can only say that this remark is the result of the ripening of many contacts and efforts, which at the moment, and I emphasize at the moment, would be best served by silence.
The prime minister slammed the decision of International Criminal Court Chief Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda to open a full investigation into alleged Israeli "war crimes" in Palestinian Authority (PA)-controlled territories.
"While we are moving forward in new areas of hope and peace with our Arab neighbors, the ICC in The Hague has taken a step backwards. On Friday, it finally became a weapon in the political war against the State of Israel."
"The prosecutor's decision against Israel is absurd on three counts. The first absurdity is that the prosecutor's decision completely contradicts the founding principle of the court itself. The ICC was established after the horrors of World War II, mainly the horrors that were inflicted on our people, and it was designed to deal with problems that states would raise regarding war crimes, such as genocide or large-scale deportations. It was designed to do so for states that did not have true judicial systems in law, which are present — of course — in the western world.
"They took a Palestinian claim, who do not have a state, and accused the only democracy in the Middle East, which operates in accordance with the highest legal standards of the western democracies, which the court has no jurisdiction over. This is the first absurdity.
"The second absurdity is that the prosecutor's decision contradicts historical truth. It opposes the right of the Jews to settle in the Jews' homeland. To turn the fact that Jews are living in their land into a war crime is an absurdity of unimaginable proportions.
"The third absurdity is that the prosecutor's decision contradicts contemporary truth. Who are they bringing here? Who are they accusing here? Iran? Turkey? Syria? No — Israel, the only democracy in the Middle East. This is terrible hypocrisy. We will continue to fight against these three absurdities. We will continue to shatter them. We will struggle for our rights and for our historical truth with all the tools at our disposal.
"From the depth of our heart, we thank US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo that he and President Trump's administration are struggling against these distortions, this injustice and this mendacity on a daily basis. We will continue to struggle against this always."