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Israel’s opposition co-leader says Netanyahu is twisting Trump Mideast plan into a ‘campaign stunt’

Israel’s opposition co-leader says Netanyahu is twisting Trump Mideast plan into a ‘campaign stunt’

A leading Israeli opposition figure said on Monday that PM Benjamin Netanyahu has turned a US initiative for ending conflict with the Palestinians into a campaign “stunt” by pushing for the immediate annexation of West Bank settlements.

The co-leader of the Blue and White party Yair Lapid insisted he was against unilateral steps endangering what he sees as President Donald Trump’s “promising Mideast plan.” He expressed hope that the Palestinians would come around to negotiating, based on the US blueprint.

Lapid is slated to become Israel’s next foreign minister if his party prevails in the March 2 election and fellow party leader Benny Gantz wins the premiership. Speaking with foreign correspondents in Jerusalem, Lapid condemned what he said was the prime minister’s “unilateral steps” to annex parts of the occupied West Bank, AP reported.

“This is something that came out from the prime minister’s office right after the plan was presented. Probably, it seems, for campaign reasons. And this is something you don’t do. This is too serious to become a stunt in the campaign,” he added. The Palestinians have angrily rejected the US plan.