Trump’s Jerusalem Decision Is ‘Brutal,’ Hollande SaysBy and
Hollande comments in Bloomberg Television interview in Dubai
Former French president defends economic record, talks Brexit
President Donald Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital is “brutal and corrosive,” former French President Francois Hollande said in an interview.
“It’s brutal because it’s unilateral, without consultation of Europe or Arab countries and of course without the Palestinians,” Hollande said in a Bloomberg Television interview Tuesday in Dubai, where he was attending the Arab Strategy Forum. “It’s corrosive because it will create absolutely no incentive to resume peace talks.”
The remarks follow wide international condemnation of the U.S. move, including by Hollande’s successor as president, Emmanuel Macron, who said on Sunday that the decision is a “danger for peace.”
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has accused European leaders of double standards for criticizing Trump’s decision but not denouncing the recent violent protests and attacks that ensued in Israel and Israeli-occupied territory.
Hollande also defended his economic record in the interview, taking credit for the current French recovery. “I put in place labor-market reforms that have produced results,” he said.
“During my mandate, I made clear and courageous choices, that have allowed a return of stronger growth and that has assured a strong recovery in employment and that has stabilized the growth in the deficit,” Hollande said. “There were tax increases at the beginning of my mandate, because we needed to reduce the deficit.”
On Brexit, Hollande asserted that the U.K.’s departure from the European Union cannot be undone.
“Brexit is irreversible,” he said. “Its aim is not to punish the British, its aim is to clarify -- as best possible -- the future relations between the European Union and the U.K.”