By “recognizing Palestine,” Google is hampering the success and even the continuation of the peace process, Deputy Foreign Minister Ze’ev Elkin (Likud-Beiteinu) said in a Knesset session. “Google is sadly mistaken if it thinks this will enhance the peace process,” Elkin said. “As long as the Palestinians think they can achieve their goals unilaterally, without negotiations, they will have no motivation to enter into talks.”
Last weekend, Google announced that it was the name “Palestine” on its search engine instead of “Palestinian Territories” in recognition of the Palestinian Authority’s unilateral bid at the United Nations.
In a sharply worded letter to Google CEO Larry Page , Elkin said that that Google’s move does not bring Israel and the PA closer to the negotiating table but in fact achieves the opposite, adding that such decisions further solidify the PA’s position, that by taking unilateral steps they will be recognized as a state without having to negotiate with Israel. “Google’s decision is puzzling,” wrote Elkin, “especially given the fact that this is intervention by an international company in local politics, which does not serve the interests of either party in the long-term.”
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