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Olmert: U.S. cash derailed peace plan

May 5, 2012 at 5:58 PM   |   Comments

JERUSALEM, May 5 (UPI) -- Former Israeli Premier Ehud Olmert said the "extreme right wing" in the United States spent millions to help remove him and thwart his Mideast peace plan.

Olmert told CNN Friday he had sought in 2008 a "full comprehensive peace between us and the Palestinians" -- a two-state solution based on 1967 borders.

Olmert, who resigned in 2009 amid an investigation into alleged corruption, which he denies, said he believed a majority of Israelis would have supported his peace plan if it had been put to a vote.

"But I had to fight against superior powers, including millions and millions of dollars that were transferred from this country [the United States] by figures which were from the extreme right wing that were aimed to topple me as prime minister of Israel," Olmert said. "There is no question about it."

Asked if he would name the right-wing figures allegedly involved, Olmert said, "Next time."

But he said, "I know the names of the people that spent millions of dollars in order to stop me -- from the United States."

Olmert said Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas never agreed to his 2008 proposal but did not reject it either.

The plan called for the division of Jerusalem, which both the Israelis and Palestinians claim as their capital.

Olmert said he hoped his successor, Binyamin Netanyahu, would pursue his peace proposal.

"We want peace. We need peace. We want to separate from the Palestinians," Olmert said.

"We don't want to control the lives of the Palestinians. We want them to have their own separate state and we have to do everything in our power in order to bring it about."

But he said he doubted Netanyahu would pursue the peace plan.

© 2012 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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