Netanyahu Said to Present Gantz with Range of Annexation Options
Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has reportedly presented Alternate Prime Minister Benny Gantz with a range of options related to Jerusalem’s prospective annexation of parts of the West Bank. According to media reports, the four scenarios vary from the “symbolic” application of Israeli sovereignty over a few large settlements to about 30% of the West Bank, as is ultimately envisioned by the Trump Administration’s Middle East peace plan. However, the White House has reportedly conditioned its backing of annexations on broad support in the Israeli cabinet, which is split nearly evenly between members of Netanyahu’s and Gantz’s political blocs. While Netanyahu previously vowed to press ahead with widespread annexations on July 1, Gantz has repeatedly voiced concern over the move’s potential damage to the Jewish state’s global standing. During a meeting on Wednesday between the Israeli leaders, Gantz reportedly reiterated his opposition to annexing any territory inhabited by Palestinians and restated his desire to proceed only in coordination with the international community. This includes Jordan, in particular, as King Abdullah II has threatened to annul Amman’s 1994 peace treaty with Israel if annexations are implemented.