What Secretary of State Hillary Clinton just said in Israel with Prime Minister Netanyahu

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SECRETARY OF STATE HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON DELIVERS

REMARKS ON OPERATION PILLAR OF CLOUD,

AS RELEASED BY THE STATE DEPARTMENT

NOVEMBER 20, 2012

SPEAKER: SECRETARY OF STATE HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON

CLINTON: Thank you very much, Prime Minister.

I look forward to a productive discussion this evening at

such a critical moment for Israel and the region. President

Obama asked me to come to Israel with a very clear message.

America’s commitment to Israel’s security is rock-solid and

unwavering.

That is why we believe it is essential to de-escalate the

situation in Gaza. The rocket attacks from terrorist

organizations inside Gaza on Israeli cities and towns must end

and a broader calm restored.

The goal must be a durable outcome that promotes regional

stability and advances the security and legitimate aspirations

of Israelis and Palestinians alike. President Obama has

emphasized the same points in his multiple conversations with

President Morsi of Egypt. And we appreciate President Morsi’s

personal leadership and Egypt’s efforts thus far.

As a regional leader and neighbor, Egypt has the

opportunity and responsibility to continue playing a crucial and

constructive role in this process. I will carry this message to

Cairo tomorrow. I will also be consulting with President Abbas

in Ramallah.

Let me also say, to echo the prime minister, I’m very

pleased that the Iron Dome defense system is performing so well.

Our partnership in support of this system represents America’s

enduring commitment to the safety and security of the Israeli

people and to Israel’s right to defend itself.

But no defense is perfect. And our hearts break for the

loss of every civilian, Israeli and Palestinian, and for all

those who have been wounded or who are living in fear and

danger. I know today was a difficult day. And I offer my

deepest condolences to the loved ones of those who were lost and

injured.

In the end, there is no substitute for security and for a

just and lasting peace. And the current crisis certainly

focuses us on the urgency of this broader goal. So, in the days

ahead, the United States will work with our partners here in

Israel and across the region toward an outcome that bolsters

security for the people of Israel, improves conditions for the

people of Gaza, and moves toward a comprehensive peace for all

people of the region.

And I thank you, Prime Minister, for your hospitality and

look forward to our discussion.

Netanyahu, thank you.

END

.ETX

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