Netanyahu thanks Czech Republic for support

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu thanked the Czech Republic for standing with Israel against a United Nations resolution that gave the Palestinians enhanced statehood status.

The Czech Republic was one of nine countries to vote against the resolution in the U.N. General Assembly on Nov. 29 that gave the Palestinians non-member observer statehood status.

"Thank you for your country’s opposition to the one-sided resolution at the United Nations; thank you for your friendship; thank you for your courage," Netanyahu said Wednesday during a meeting with Czech Republic Prime Minister Petr Neca. "I know that in voting against the one-sided resolution, the Czech Republic stood with the United States and Canada and a handful of other countries against the prevailing international current. But history has shown us time and again that what is right is not what is popular, and if there is a people in the world who can appreciate that, it’s the people of your country."

Netanyahu was referring to the 1938 takeover by Germany of the Sudetenland.

"I know that your country has learned the lessons of history. So has my country, Israel. That is why Israel will not sacrifice its vital interests for the sake of obtaining the world’s applause. Israel is committed to a genuine peace with our Palestinian neighbors – a genuine and durable peace.  For peace to endure, it must be a peace that we can defend," the Israeli leader said.

Netanyahu stopped Wednesday in the Czech Republic on his way to Germany for an annual joint session between the Israeli and German governments. 

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