Former Israeli Ambassador to the UK Mark Regev has called the two-state solution “an illusion” that will “never be implemented”.
The envoy’s comments came in an interview with the BBC’s political pundit Nick Robinson for ‘Political Thinking,’ to be published on Friday evening and aired on Radio 4 on Saturday.
“Any peace has to be based on reality,” he said. “You can have a two-state illusion. It might look nice on paper, but it will never be implemented.
“A real solution has to take into account the realities on the ground and first and foremost, you have to build peace on security because we know that peace that can be defended won’t endure, it can’t survive.’
Regev, a former spokesman for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, left London for Jerusalem last month and is expected to take on an advisory role.
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His comments come follow British Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s pledge not to recognise any territory annexed by Israel, arguing that a negotiated two-state solution was still the “only” viable option.
However Regev said a future Palestinian state looked like it would be “just another failed Middle Eastern state… like Iraq or Syria or Yemen or Libya”.
He said: “How is that good for peace? How is that good for Israel? More importantly, how is that going to be good for the Palestinians?
“When people say a Palestinian state is the solution, I think it’s important to put a number of qualifications: is a Palestinian state that is peaceful, democratic and one that wants to live with Israel side by side, or is it going to be a superior platform to continue the struggle against Israel? These questions have to be asked.”
Regev was also asked about his controversial pro-settlement successor Tzipi Hotovely, answering that “she’s a politician, when she becomes the Israeli Ambassador she will cease being a politician and will become a civil servant and part of Israel’s diplomatic corps”.
He added: “In the past we’ve had political appointees who’ve been very successful ambassadors.”