JERUSALEM — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has invited Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas to address the Israeli parliament and publicly recognize Jewish links to the land of Israel.
"I call on him from here today: let's break the deadlock," Netanyahu said Monday in a special address to the parliament, or Knesset, in honor of a visit by French President Francois Hollande.
"Come to the Israeli Knesset and I'll come to Ramallah," he said, referring to Abbas' West Bank headquarters.
"Get up on this platform and recognize the historical truth: the Jews have a nearly 4,000-year-old link to the land of Israel. The Jews are a people with a right to self-determination," he said.
"In real peace, all Palestinian claims regarding the State of Israel will end, including national claims on its territory and sovereignty," Netanyahu said.
Meanwhile, Hollande called for a complete halt to Israel's settlement activities, saying it was harmful to peace efforts.
In a speech after talks in the West Bank city of Ramallah with Abbas, the French leader made an unequivocal demand for Israel to stop building on land seized in the 1967 Six-Day War.
"France demands a full and complete halt to settlement activity," Hollande said on his first official visit to the Palestinian territories.
"Settlement activity complicates the negotiations and makes it difficult to achieve a two-state solution," he said a day after talks in Israel focused heavily on the Iran nuclear issue.
© AFP 2014