The United States expects Israel’s next government to end nearly 50 years of occupation and clear the way for a Palestinian state, a close aide to Barack Obama said on Monday.
“An occupation that has lasted for almost 50 years must end, and the Palestinian people must have the right to live in and govern themselves in their own sovereign state,” White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough said.
A separate Palestinian state offers the best guarantee for Israel’s long-term security, he told a Jewish American conference in Washington, according to Reuters.
“In the end, we know what a peace agreement should look like. The borders of Israel and an independent Palestine should be based on the 1967 lines with mutually agreed swaps,” McDonough was quoted as saying.
The official criticized Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for abandoning a Palestinian state in the run-up to his re-election on March 17.
Netanyahu is working to form Israel’s next coalition government.
Palestinians seek a state in Gaza, the West Bank and East Jerusalem, lands Israel captured in the 1967 Arab-Israeli war.
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