President Trump holds news conference with Israeli PM Netanyahu

The two world leaders spoke with the press before having a private meeting at the White House.
33:53 | 02/15/17

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Transcript for President Trump holds news conference with Israeli PM Netanyahu
This is an ABC news special room. George Stephanopoulos and we are going straight in the east room of the White House for president trump is meeting with the prime minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu. Let's listen to the president. Thank you. Today I have the honor of welcoming my friend prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu. To the white house. With his visit the United States again reaffirms our unbreakable bond. With our cherished ally Israel. The partnership between our two countries build on our shared values. Has advanced the cause of human freedom. Dignity and peace these are the building blocks of democracy. The State of Israel is a symbol to the world. Of resilience in the face of oppression. I think of no other state. It's gone through what they've gone. And of survival in the face of genocide. We will never forget what the Jewish people. Have endured. Your perseverance. In the face of hostility your open democracy in the face of violence. And your success in the face of tall arts is truly. Inspirational. The security challenges faced by Israel. Are enormous. Including the threat of Iran is nuclear ambitions which I've talked a lot about. One of the worst deals I've ever seen. Is Iran India. Mired administration has already impose new sanctions on Iran. And I will do more to prevent Iran from ever developing. I mean ever in nuclear weapon. As security assistance is you is currently at an all time high. In sharing that Israel has the ability. To defend itself from threats. Of which there are unfortunately. Many. Both of our countries will continue and grow. We'll have a long history of cooperation. In the fight against terrorism and the fight against those who do not value. Human life. America and Israel are two nations they cherish. The value of all human life. This is one more reason why reject. Unfair and one sided actions against Israel. At the United Nations. Shares traded as you know in my opinion. Very very unfairly. Or other international forums as well as boycotts that target Israel. Our administration is committed to working with Israel. And our common allies. In the region towards greater security and stability. That includes. Working toward a peace agreement. Between Israel. And the Palestinians. The United States will encourage a peace. And really a great peace deal will be working on it very very diligently. Very important to me also. Something we want to do. But it is the parties themselves who most. Directly negotiate. Such an agreement. Will be beside. Will be working with as with any successful negotiation. Both sides will have to make compromises. You know that we're. That. I want the Israeli people to -- That the United States stands with Israel. In this struggle against terrorism. As you know mr. prime minister. Our two nations. Will always. Condemn. Terrorist acts. Peace requires nations to uphold the dignity of human alive. And to be a voice for all of those. Who are endangered. And forgotten. Those are the ideals to which we all. And will always. Aspire. And commit. This will be the first of many productive meetings. And I again. Mr. prime minister thank you very much for being with us today. Mr. prime minister thank you. President drum. Thank you for the truly warm hospitality. You wouldn't Milan have shown me my wife's are. Aren't cardinal addition. I deeply value your friendship. To be through the State of Israel. Who so clearly evident. In the words you just spoke. Israel has no better ally than the United States. And I want to assure you. The United States. Has no better live in Israel. Our lives has been. Remarkably strong. But under your leadership. I'm confident that we'll get even stronger. I look forward to working review. To dramatically upgrade our lines of every field and securities. And technology. And cyber intrusion so many others and I certainly welcome. You're fourth for a call. To ensure that is rose treated fairly and international forums. And that the slander and boycotts. Of Israel are resisted mightily by the power. And moral position of the United States of America. Oops. Our lives is based on and a deep bond of common values and common interest. An increase in those values and interest. Are under attack by one malevolent force. Radical Islamic terror. Mr. President you vote you've shown great clarity and courage. In confronting this challenge head on. You call for confronting Iran's terrorist regime. Preventing Enron from. Realizing this. Terrible view into a nuclear arsenal. And you've said that the United States. Is committed to preventing. Iran from getting nuclear weapons. You call for the defeat devices. Under your leadership I believe we can reverse the rising tide of radical Islam. And in this great test as in so many others. Israel stands we do. And I stand we do. Mr. President and rolling back militant Islam. We conceived as an historic opportunity. Because from first time in my life terms. And for the first time in the life of my countries. Arab countries in the region. Do not see Israel as an enemy. But increasingly. As an hour. And I believe that under your leadership. This change and our region. Creates an unprecedented opportunity. To strengthen security. And advance peace. Let us seize this moment to go there. Let us bolster security. But Asik new avenues of peace. And let us bring these remarkable alliance between Israel and the United States. To even greater parts. Thank you thank you Mr. President. Thank you again they. We'll take a couple of questions. David Brody what's. Christian broadcasting David. Thank you Mr. President it's prime minister. Both of you of Kurdish criticize the Iran nuclear deal and at times even call for its repeal. On one or if you're concerned at all. As a relates to not just the national security advisor Michael Flynn who is recent really. No longer here but also some of those events that have been going on communication Russia if that is gonna hampered this deal at all whether or not it would keep. Iran from becoming a nuclear state ands and secondly on the settlement issue are you both on the same page how do you do exactly whose term that. As a relates the settlement issue. Thank you. Michael Flynn general Flynn is a wonderful man I think he's been treated very very unfairly by the media. As I call it the fake media in many cases. And I think it's really a sad thing that he was treated so badly I think in addition to that. From intelligence. Papers are being leaked things are being leaked. It's criminal action criminal act. And it's been going on for a long time before me. But now it's really going on. And people are trying to cover up for a terrible loss. That the Democrats had under. Hillary Clinton. I think it's very very unfair what's happened to. General Flynn and the way he was treated and the documents and papers that were illegally. I stress that illegally leaked. Very very unfair. As far as settlements I'd like to see you hold back on settlements are a little bit. Will. Work something out but I would like to see a deal will be made I think a deal will be made. I know that every president would like to most of them had not started to late because they never thought it was possible. And it was impossible. Because they didn't do it. But BB and I have known each other a long time. Smart man great negotiator. And I think we're gonna make a deal that might be a bigger and better deal than people in this roomy. Don't understand. That's a possibility. So let's see what we do. It's part. Doesn't sound too optimistic but that's up. Since good negotiated as we are revealed I also want to thank. I also want to thank Sarah could you please stand you're so lovely and you've been so nice to have money I appreciate it very much. Thank you. You care. We would lose. We're going. Mr. President. In your vision for the new Middle East peace are you ready to give up hope the notion of two state solution. It was a adopted by previous administration. And will you be willing to you differently viewers from the prime ministers and some of his partners are asking to do for example annexation of parts of the West Bank. And are restricted settlement constructions. And one more question are you going to for a fill your promised to move the US embassy in Israel to Jerusalem and if so when. It was a prime minister you do kind of news tonight to tell mr. the president that you are backing off the two state solution. So I'm looking at two state and one state. And I like the one that both parties like. I'm very happy with the one that both parties I can live with either one. I thought for a while the two state looked. Like it may be the easier of the two. But honestly if Bibi and if the Palestinians if Israel and the Palestinians are. Are happy I'm happy with the one they like the best as far as the embassy moving to Jerusalem. I'd love to see that happen we're looking at it very very strongly here we're looking that it with. Great care great care leave me and we'll see what happens can't. Thank you. I read yesterday an American official. Said that if you ask five people. What Tuesday it would look like me you'd get a different answers well it was president if you ask five Israelis you'd get full different. But rather than deal with labels. I want to do with substance. It's something of hope to do four years in a world that's absolutely fixated on labels and not on substance. So here's the substance. They're two prerequisites for peace that I laid out to use some winners. An average changed. First the Palestinians must recognize the Jewish State's. They have to stop calling for Israel's destruction death to stop educating their people. For Israel's destruction. Second in any peace agreement. Israel must retain the overriding security control over the and card area west of the Jordan River because if we don't. We know what will happen. Because otherwise we'll get another radical Islamic terrorist state. In the Palestinian areas exploded in the peace exploded in Belize. Now unfortunately the Palestinians. Vehemently reject both prerequisites for please. First thing they continue to call for Israel's destruction. Insiders schools insider mosque inside the textbooks you have to read it to believe. They even did you know the even denied Mr. President our historical connection. To our homeland. I suppose you have to ask yourself why why do. Why are Jews called Jews. Well the Chinese are called Chinese because the come from China the Japanese are called Japanese because they're come from Japan. We'll Jews are called Jews. Because they come from Julia. This is our ancestral homeland. Jews aren't are not foreign colonial list and you deal. So unfortunately the Palestinians not only denied the past. But also poisoned the present. Then in public squares and owner of mass murders were murdered. Israelis. And I've discern also murdered Americans. Victory fund that pays monthly salaries. To the families of murders. But the family of the terrorist who killed him before so wonderful. Young American West Point graduate. Will stop to death while visiting Israel. So. This is the source of the conflict the persistent Palestinian refusal to recognize a Jewish state and any boundaries this. Persistent rejection is and that's the reason we don't have peace. Now that pasture. I want it to change. Not only of I'm not abandon these two prerequisites appease. They've become even more important because of the rising tide of fanaticism that have swept the movies and of also unfortunately. Infected Palestinian society. So I want this to change. I want those two prerequisites of peace substance not labels I want them reinstated. But if anyone believes that all eyes as prime minister original responsible for the security of my country would blithely walk into a Palestinian terrorists there. That seeks the destruction of my country the gravely mistaken the two prerequisites appease. Recognition of the Jewish state. And Israel's security needs west of the Jordan. They remain pertinent. We have to look for new ways. New ideas. On how to reinstate. And how to move peace Ford and I believe that the great opportunity. For peace comes from. A regional approach. From involving. Our new phone. Arab partners. In the pursuit of a broader peace and peace with the Palestinians and great we look forward. To discussing this in detail would you Mr. President. Because. I think that if we work together. We overshot. And we have been discussing that and it is something that is very different hasn't been discussed before. And it's actually a much bigger deal much more important deal in a sense. It would take in many many countries and who would come very very large territories so. I didn't know you're going to be wrenching that but that's now that you did I think it's terrific thing and I think we have some pretty good cooperation from people that in the past would never ever have. Even thought about doing us so we'll see how that works. Katie from cal roller skating room. Thank you Mr. President. You said here earlier remarks that both sides we'll have to make compromises and it comes a peace deal. He mentions a halt on settlements commune layout and humor specific compromises that you have in mind both for the Israelis. And with Palestinians. And mr. prime minister. What expectations you have from the new administration. About how to either amend the Iran nuclear agreements or how to dismantle it altogether. And how to overall work with the due administration to combat Iran's increased aggression not only in the last couple of months but the past couple of years is pop. It's actually an interesting question I think that. The Israelis are gonna have to show some flexibility. Just hard toward to do. They're gonna have to show. The fact that they really want to make a deal. I think our new concept that we've been discussing actually for a while. Is something that allows them to show more flexibility than they have in the past because. You have a lot bigger canvas to play list. And I think they'll do that I think they're very much would like to. They can deal I wouldn't be happy and I wouldn't be here and I wouldn't be as optimistic as I am I really think the I can tell you from. This standpoint of BB and from the standpoint of Israel I really believe they want to make a deal that like to see the big. I think the Palestinians. Have to get rid of some of that. Hate that that teller from a very young age that tell a tremendous hate. I seen what their top. And you can talk about flexibility there to put it starts at a very young age and it starts. In the school room. And they have to acknowledges you now. We gonna have to do is no way deal can be made if they're not ready to. Acknowledge. It very very great and important country. And I think they're going to be willing to do that else but now I also believe we're going to have Katie there. Players. At a very high level. And I think it might make it easier on both the Palestinians and Israel to get something done. Can't thank you very interesting question thank you. US about Iran. One thing is preventing Iran from getting nuclear weapons something that. President trump and I think are deeply committed to do. And we obviously going to discuss. I think beyond. President trump has lived a very important effort. In the past few weeks. Just coming into the presence. He pointed out their violations and remember our worsens and ballistic missile tests by the way it is ballistic missiles are inscribed. In Hebrew. Israel must be destroyed the Palestinians the rather the Iranian foreign ministers are reefs are well our. Ballistic missiles are not intended against any country. They rely on the missile in Hebrew. Israel must be destroyed so. Challenging a wrong on its violations of ballistic missiles. Imposing sanctions on. Hezbollah preventing them. Making them pay for the terrorism that it. Foment throughout the Middle East and beyond mobile. I think that's a change that is clearly evident and since president trump took office. Welcome that. I think it's so. Obviously this very openly and it is long overdue. And I think that if we work together. And not just the United States and Israel. But so many others. In the regency new life on the on the great. Magnitude and danger of the Iranian threat. And I think. I think we can. Roll back Iran's. Aggression and their injured and that's something that is important for. Israel the Arab spirits but I think it's vitally important for America these guys are developing ICB hands. They're developing a they wanted to to a nuclear arsenal not a ball. A hundred balls and they want to have the ability to launch them everywhere on earth. And including and especially eventually the United States. So this is something that is important for all of us I welcome the change and I intend to work with president trump very close they're so that would comport with Stanford. Units and. Blow. Mr. President. Since your election come pain and even after your victory. And we've seen a sharp rise in am I anti Semitic. Am. And anti Semitic incidents across the United States and I wonder what do you say to those among the Jewish community in the states. And in Israel and maybe a around the world. Who believe in fear is that your administration is playing music xenophobia. And may be racist tones and if the prime minister. And do you agree to what the president dusted about their need for Israel to restrain and to or to stop settlement activity in the West Bank. And a quick follow up on my friends questions simple question do you back off from your vision to the other for the conflict. Of the state solution as he lay out in bar Ilan speech always do support the things. Well I just wanna say that we are you know very honored by the victory that we had 306. Electoral College votes and we were not supposed to crack. Two pointing. You know that right there was no way to 221 but then they said there's no way to do seventy. And there's tremendous enthusiasm out there I will say that. We are going to have peace in this country. We are going to step. Crime in this country. We are going to do everything within our power. To stop long simmering. Racism in. Every other thing that's going on so glad of bad things have. Been taken place over a long period of time I think one of the reasons I won the election is we have a very very divided nation. Very divided. And hopefully I'll be able to do something about that and had there was something that was very important to me. As far as. People Jewish people so many friends. A daughter who happens to be. Here right now a son in law. And three beautiful grandchildren. I think that you going to see a lot different. United States of America over the next 34 or eight years. I think a lot of good things are happening. And you can see a lot of love you good to see a lot of love it thank you. I believe that Perrier issue of the settlements was not the core of the conflict. Nor does it really draw of the conflict I think it's an issue that's would be resolved in the comforts of peace negotiations. And I think it also we also wore gonna speak about it present compromise so we can arrive. Can understand and so we don't keep on bumping into each of all the time on the solution. We're going to discuss its. Columbia question you said you just came back. With your question to the problem that I says it's the label what does Abu -- and me by Tuesday smoker. What what is immune. A state that doesn't recognize. The Jewish state a state that. Basically is open for. Attack against Israel. And what are we talking about which are about Costa Rica are we talking about another re wrong. So obviously means different things are told what are the conditions and I believe are necessary for an agreement. It's the recognition of the Jewish state and its Israel's Israel's security control of the entire area otherwise we're just fantasizing. Otherwise. We'll get another failed state another terrorist. Dick certain Islamist dictatorship that will. Not work for peace would work to. Destroy hospitals would destroy any hope any hope for a peaceful future for a peoples so I've been very clear about those conditions and they haven't changed. I haven't changed. If you read what I sit. Eight years ago it's exactly that and I repeated that again and again if you want to do would labels do labels all of you will sell options. And finally wonder if I can respond to. Something that I know from personal experience. I've known present trump for many years. And to. Allude to him. Or to speak. Whose team. Some of whom I've known for many years to. Commit review observed how long we've known you. And while he was never small he was always very. There's always tall but I'd. I've known the president and I've known as for the family and his stint for a long talk. There is no greater supporter of the Jewish people and the Jews there's. And president tall chrome I think we should put that to us. Thank you very much. Goodness I appreciate that very much. If you. Mr. credit. Mr. Mister president do you guarantee that. Contact with the Russians Mr. President any questions on Russia. Mr. President. Place are right there present from from ending their press comes to embrace from the Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Colleen is no greater friend. Is that they had for Israel we saw some big news at their press conference president from backing away from the commitment to a two state solution which has been the policy of US presence for generations now. But we also saw as you just heard John talk shouting at that it that question of the president the president ignoring questions about one of the big story of the day. The fact the New York Times reported. Senior members of his campaign aides and allies had repeated contacts with the Russian senior Russian intelligence officials. During the election campaign I think Jon Karl is with us right now and John the president was able to do that in part. By calling on has favored. Favored people in the media from key cabbage from cattle dot com. And David Brody of the Christian broadcasting. George it is astounding we've now had four presidential. News conferences and the president for the most part has simply avoid calling on. On people from news organizations from broadcast networks. Up from the wire services from the major newspapers he is sides consistently sought to call on friendly reporters. Friendly conservative news organizations that would avoid asking him tough question or questions on the news today amazing that on a day like this. He could have a press conference and not face a single question on the big story of this York times bombshell report that that members of his campaign allegedly had contacts. With the Russians during the campaign and no questions on that. Roberts. And judges to follow up on that though the president did he had been named general Flynn was mentioned general Flynn of course that was the national advisor who he fired. On Monday night after it was revealed that he was having security risk according to Justice Department because he had. Misled the vice president about his contacts with Russia but listening to the president right there are calling general when a wonderful man a victim. Of illegal leaks in an unfair media you would not be fired. I meet Georgia east called on the wonderful man blamed the whole thing on what he called the fake media. I I can't even on the I wanted to do you know jump up its liquidity youths. I heard him why did you fire him I'm no explanation whatsoever. Eight and listening to the president today you would think that it's and outraged that Clinton was fired yet. She was Laura fired him. Put it this was an astounding news. Moments. Beyond all of that just offered seen that dynamic between Netanyahu and the president as you mentioned the president. Ending decades of American foreign policy experts of them not. Endorsing the idea of the two state solution saying he'd be fine with either a one state are accused it whatever the two parties want. But he did a one point directly look over to prime minister Netanyahu instead like to see got cut off the settlements. Stop the settlements on the pretty amazing moment he also said he was. Very -- you know he we was gonna push immediately. Thought he could pull off a a peace deal between the Israelis the Palestinians. And when there wasn't much of a reaction from Netanyahu said when you're not so convinced them. That Yasser bless the art of the deal on the very interest the dynamic between these two leaders. Very different from what we saw would obviously Obama and Netanyahu. Yes Cecilia Vega is there in the room as well I think there was real often hostility between President Obama and and in any Israeli prime minister you saw the Israeli prime minister. Even call out the president's son in law. I Jared Kushner who is likely to play a key role in trying to broker any kind of a deal. Yeah almost acting as a pseudo ambassador and certainly one of the most important liaisons to this White House to Israel and to. The Middle East and he was sitting right there in the front row with Ibaka by his side but George you mentioned open hostility there. I want to tell you about the open hostility right here in this room you know I'm sitting here kind of in the middle of the pack of about a number of journalists. Mainstream reporters if you will. And there's open they are in here about the fact that the president did not take any real questions. About the issue of the day and general Flint and you heard John and you heard others. Shouting that question only to be ignored pierce serious question that this administration has yet to answer on this and we didn't get those today because the president. For continually now has basically call on. A number of conservative very friendly outlets and so. You're you're you're really feeling and nope incense of of anger and frustration here and I do want to echo back to. That that that body language if you will between the prime minister and the president over that issue of settlements it was a really fascinating moment when the president turned to. Prime minister Netanyahu and said I want you to hold off on those settlements is sort of prime minister threw his hands up and said. We'll wait and see so why they go into this meeting together now George sir racially choreographed to have that meeting after this press conference but that's what they're going to do not here in the. White House appears to see things from especially bad here as well let's July. Right there clear the room of the White House has a strategy here with the with these press conferences. And they probably don't mind the fact of the mainstream press is is shouting about it but how long can that last. Well I was struck by when you look at this this is to democracies to import democracies in the world and basically the president United States is shutting down part of the First Amendment by not taking questions that are going to be anyway. Antagonistic in this I think he thinks relying on his Twitter. Feed and sending it out to the millions of people that subscribe to and then dealing with very cozy press. In this is going to be the way to get through its east bunkered down and it's bound to go back to something you mentioned which is he basically said today. That I didn't fight you make me fire Michael Flynn. You the press who treated Michael Flynn so badly would you what basically was saying was if this hadn't leaked at this had been in the papers I would have never filed mark Michael plan. The other thing that I think he meant she was he said that the leaks that came out worked criminal acts that's what he said the leaks. We're criminal acts and they were designed to cover up for election loss. Basically saying the Democrat there were democratic partisans within the government who are committing crimes in order to cover up for election loss. I have to say an astounding moment for two democracy sitting there quiet anyway we need to the issue of credibility he has Press Secretary Garth there for almost an hour yesterday talking about the eroding trust. The cause the president to fire him what happens when Sean Spicer goes before the press in his next press conference. Why do you know that's a question he's gonna have to now figure out another way to dance around this another way to try to bunker in another way to enact cover for what just was discussed in the in this I think. In the end the problem the president has is not the trust within his administration. It's a track breakdown in trust it's now happened is as a as voice there at the end of that between the press and Dow drop. And the public can now trust of the American thanks very much will be much more tonight on world news given your have good. This has been a special. For me.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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