IDF Chief: Our Offer To Scale Back West Bank Activity Is Not In Lieu Of Peace Talks

Gadi Eizenkot

The Times of Israel reports: Israel Defense Forces Chief of General Staff Gadi Eisenkot (pictured) said a recent covert Israeli offer to end IDF operations in parts of the West Bank was part of an effort to bolster security measures and is unconnected to formal peace initiatives.

The back-channel talks were a first step toward “enhancing the effectiveness of security in the region while examining the possibility of reducing the number of IDF forces operating in the Palestinian-controlled Area A of the West Bank,” Eisenkot told the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee on Tuesday.

“The ongoing dialogue is taking place on the ground and is unconnected to negotiations on a political level,” he said.

On Monday, Palestinian sources told the Times of Israel the proposal — news of which was first published by the Haaretz daily — was raised as part of ongoing talks between Palestinian Authority and Israeli officials in recent weeks regarding the continuation of security coordination in the West Bank.

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