Tense Meeting between Macron, Netanyahu due to Trump’s Jerusalem Decision

French President Emmanuel Macron welcomes Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Paris. (Reuters)
French President Emmanuel Macron welcomes Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Paris. (Reuters)
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Tense Meeting between Macron, Netanyahu due to Trump’s Jerusalem Decision

French President Emmanuel Macron welcomes Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Paris. (Reuters)
French President Emmanuel Macron welcomes Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Paris. (Reuters)

Despite the aspirations of French President Emmanuel Macron and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to add some warmth to their meeting Sunday at the Elysee Palace in Paris, a joint press conference that followed their talks revealed the tensions between them over Washington’s recent decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

It was evident that Macron sought to push Netanyahu in the direction of adopting moderate positions or initiative to defuse tension with the Palestinians.

His efforts however fell on deaf ears and each side remained attached to his known stance concerning Trump’s decision to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

The French President reiterated that his country refused the move based on two main justifications: The decision contravenes all rules of international law and poses a threat to peace in the Middle East.

Paris believes that the region does not need further hotbeds of tensions that add to the existing wars.

Macron had previously even directly talked by telephone with Trump and said his move on Jerusalem was “regrettable.”

Faced with the French positions, Netanyahu had no choice but to reiterate his previous statements delivered last Wednesday. “Recognition of Jerusalem was essential for the peace process because peace must be built on the foundation of truth,” the Israeli Prime Minister said.

And like every occasion, Netanyahu held the Palestinian side responsible for its consistent refusal to resume talks with Tel Aviv since spring 2014 because of the Israeli cabinet’s rejection to freeze the building of settlements.

In this regard, despite Macron’s repeated calls that Netanyahu initiate a courageous move and build trust with the Palestinians to end the current stalemate, his cries were not positively received by the Israeli PM.



Iraq Says No Green Light to Turkish Operations in Kurdistan

Smoke billows from a Turkish strike on Iraq's Duhok. (Kurdish media)
Smoke billows from a Turkish strike on Iraq's Duhok. (Kurdish media)
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Iraq Says No Green Light to Turkish Operations in Kurdistan

Smoke billows from a Turkish strike on Iraq's Duhok. (Kurdish media)
Smoke billows from a Turkish strike on Iraq's Duhok. (Kurdish media)

Iraqi Foreign Minister Fuad Hussein said on Friday his country hasn’t given Türkiye the green light to carry out operations in the Iraqi Kurdistan Region.

In televised remarks, he said the Baghdad government needs to hold more “security discussions with Turkish officials, even though it recognizes that the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) is also an Iraqi problem.”

He added that the Turkish army has been deployed in some Iraqi territories since 1991.

The deployment will be discussed during meetings with Turkish officials that will be held soon, he revealed.

Previous discussions with Türkiye did not yield an agreement over the security file, continued the FM. Türkiye is tying its deployment to the presence of the PKK.

Given that the group is present in Iraq, then it must also be dealt with in an “Iraqi way,” he went on to say.

The Turkish military’s incursion of 40 kms inside Iraqi territory had sparked widespread political and popular uproar.

Iraq’s national security council convened to address the issue.

Spokesman of the armed forces Yahya Rasool said the council tackled the Turkish violations and interference in the joint Iraqi-Turkish border regions.

He stressed Baghdad’s rejection of the incursion and undermining of Iraq’s territorial integrity.

Türkiye must respect the principles of good neighborliness and work diplomatically with the Iraqi government and coordinate with it over any security issue, he added.

Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Shia al-Sudani had dispatched a delegation led by the national security council head to Kurdistan to discuss general affairs and come up with a unified position over Iraq’s sovereignty.