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Rivlin urges Biden to work to ‘build confidence’ between Israelis, Palestinians

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President Reuven Rivlin on Thursday urged US President-elect Joe Biden to strive to “build confidence” between Israelis and Palestinians in the interest of peace.

Rivlin spoke with the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, a US think tank, in his first interview since the US presidential election. The group bestowed on Rivlin its highest honor, the Scholar-Statesman Award, during the virtual event.

During the lengthy conversation, the institute’s director, Robert Satloff, asked Rivlin if he had a message for Biden.

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Rivlin first highlighted Israel’s bipartisan ties to the US, in a tacit acknowledgment of US President Donald Trump’s divisive tenure at the White House.

“We know that the friendship between the Americans and the Israelis goes beyond politics,” Rivlin said in the English-language discussion.

He mentioned his long-standing friendship with Biden, calling him a “very good friend,” and said he had invited the president-elect to Israel, as the Israeli president has done with all incoming US presidents.

On the issue of the Palestinians, Rivlin said, “We know that from time to time we have some differences of opinion,........

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