Joint Press Conference with President Obama
(September 1, 2010)
PRESIDENT OBAMA: Hello, everybody. Prime Minister Netanyahu
and I just had a very productive discussion about our shared efforts
to advance the cause of peace between Israelis and Palestinians and
throughout the Middle East. I'm going to have more to say about today's
meetings not only with Prime Minister Netanyahu but with the other participants
of the talks here in the Rose Garden later this afternoon. But I did
want to specifically take some time out to speak to the people of Israel
and to the region about the senseless slaughter that took place near
There are going to be extremists and rejectionists who, rather than
seeking peace, are going to be seeking destruction. And the tragedy
that we saw yesterday where people were gunned down on the street by
terrorists who are purposely trying to undermine these talks is an example
of what we're up against. But I want everybody to be very clear: The
United States is going to be unwavering in its support of Israel's security
and we are going to push back against these kinds of terrorist activities.
And so the message should go out to Hamas and everybody else who is
taking credit for these heinous crimes that this is not going to stop
us from not only ensuring a secure Israel but also securing a longer-lasting
peace in which people throughout the region can take a different course.
I also want to express the deepest condolences of the American people
to the families of those who were gunned down. And I want to thank Prime
Minister Netanyahu, during a very difficult time for his country, still
being so committed to the cause of peace that he is here with us today.
PRIME MINISTER NETANYAHU: Well, thank you, Mr. President, for expressing
what I think is the sentiment of decent people everywhere, in the face
of this savagery and brutality.
Four innocent people were gunned down and seven new orphans were added,
by people who have no respect for human life and trample human rights
into the dust and butcher everything that they oppose.
I think that the President's statement is an expression of our desire
to fight against this terror. And the talks that we had, which were,
indeed, open, productive, serious in the quest for peace, also centered
around the need to have security arrangements that are able to roll
back this kind of terror and other threats to Israel's security. That
is a fundamental element, an important foundation, of the peace that
we seek and work for.
And I appreciate, Mr. President, your efforts to advance this peace
for us and for our neighbors, for our region, and I think we can say,
for the world.
PRESIDENT OBAMA: Thank you. And let me just say that I will be meeting
with President Abbas this afternoon. He condemned this outrageous attack,
as well. I have the utmost confidence in him and his belief in a two-state
solution in which the people of Israel and the Palestinians are living
side by side in peace and security. And so I am also grateful to him
for his presence here today.
We've got a lot of work to do. There are going to be those who are
going to do everything they can to undermine these talks, but we are
going to remain stalwart.
And so, to Prime Minister Netanyahu and to President Abbas, as well
as to President Mubarak and King Abdullah of Jordan, I am very grateful
for their participation. I will have a longer discussion about that
this afternoon after my bilateral meetings.
Sources: Prime Ministers Office