Sunday at 10am and 1pm EST on CNN's GPS, Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak discusses a range of issues including the possibility of an Israeli strike on Iran.
In the excerpt below, Barak addresses the issue of Israel's settlement building.
Fareed Zakaria: The Palestinians are sending you a letter, though, arguing that if negotiations between the Palestinians and the Israelis must resume, Israel must stop building settlements - creating facts on the ground that will make it more and more difficult to create a two-state solution. Is there any prospect of that happening?
Ehud Barak: Fareed, I hope that it will happen. I think that most of the burden for the inability to move in the last three years happens to be on the Palestinians' shoulders, not on ours.
But I can tell you honestly, I was the prime minister 12 years ago. I negotiated a very generous proposals with previous Chairman Arafat, together with President Clinton. It put far reaching proposals on the table that was rejected by Arafat. And he turned deliberately to terror. And that during that time, we were building four times the pace of construction that Israel executed now.
I was the defense minister in Ehud Olmert's government for five years ago when he proposed an extremely generous proposal to Abu Mazen. We were building about twice the pace that we are building now.
So this government of Netanyahu is not the most aggressive in building. We are listening very carefully to the needs of our citizens, on the one hand, and to the needs of the Palestinian future state, as well as the demands from the world. And we are not going over any hill or valley and establishing new settlements. Not a single new settlement has been built in the last three years since this government is in power.
Be sure to catch the full interview Sunday at 10am and 1pm EST on CNN's GPS.
The Global Public Square is where you can make sense of the world every day with insights and explanations from CNN's Fareed Zakaria, leading journalists at TIME and CNN, and other international thinkers. Join GPS editor Jason Miks and get informed about global issues, exposed to unique stories, and engaged with diverse and original perspectives.
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