Overseas Press Club Honors CNN for 'Undercover in Syria' Series
March 21st, 2017
10:33 AM ET

Overseas Press Club Honors CNN for 'Undercover in Syria' Series

The Overseas Press Club of America has honored CNN’s ‘Undercover in Syria’ series with the David Kaplan Award for Best TV or video spot news reporting from abroad. They will present the award, which honors the finest international reporting, at its annual ceremony on Thursday, April 27 in New York. CNN President Jeff Zucker will be on hand to deliver the keynote address.

Reported by senior international correspondent Clarissa Ward and produced by Salma Abdelaziz, ‘Undercover in Syria’ took viewers inside rebel-held territory for an exclusive series of reports on what life was like under the bombs. CNN was the only Western media to witness the effects of Russian bombardment first hand and go inside the devastation of rebel-held Aleppo.

“The Overseas Press Club is one of the oldest and most respected collection of journalists in the business,” says Ward. “It's hugely exciting to win this award, and particularly for a story that I truly believe the world needed to see and hear.” FULL POST


Topics: Awards • Clarissa Ward • CNN • Syria
Putin to Fareed Zakaria: 'The U.S. is a great power. At the moment, it is probably the only superpower and we accept this fact'
June 19th, 2016
11:23 AM ET

Putin to Fareed Zakaria: 'The U.S. is a great power. At the moment, it is probably the only superpower and we accept this fact'

At 1:00pmET on CNN/U.S., a special edition of CNN’s FAREED ZAKARIA GPS features a wide-ranging discussion with Russia’s President Vladimir Putin on the subjects of U.S.-Russian relations, the European Union, the 2016 U.S. election, the extended conflicts in Ukraine and Syria, and doping allegations against Russian athletes hoping to go to the 2016 Olympic Games.

Italy's Prime Minister Matteo Renzi discusses the potential 'permanent' impact on Europe for a potential 'Brexit' vote; and Kazakhstan’s President Nursultan Nazarbayev discusses the possibility of a female president in his country in the future.

This wide-ranging discussion encores today on both CNN/U.S. and CNN International.   Please check here for additional airtimes across CNN's broadcast networks: http://edition.cnn.com/tv/schedule/europe

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#UndercoverInSyria: Clarissa Ward reports from behind rebel lines
March 14th, 2016
10:03 AM ET

#UndercoverInSyria: Clarissa Ward reports from behind rebel lines

Clarissa Ward reports from rebel-held territory in exclusive series

As the civil war in Syria enters its sixth year, CNN releases exclusive reporting from senior international correspondent Clarissa Ward from behind rebel lines inside Syria.

Joined by CNN producer Salma Abdelaziz and Syria-based filmmaker Bilal Abdul Kareem, the CNN team spent almost a week on the ground in rebel-held areas of northern Syria to report on what life is like there. And less than 24 hours after arriving, the team witnessed an airstrike that left 11 dead.

“For too long, many of us have been relying on grainy YouTube video and Skype interviews to help us parse through what is happening on the ground in Syria,” Ward says. “Journalists have been able to get visas to visit regime controlled parts of the country, but it has been too long since Western journalists have entered rebel-held Syria. We wanted to see for ourselves what life is like under the bombs.”

FULL POST

February 1st, 2016
12:36 PM ET

PM Trudeau on Canada's reaction to ISIS: "I think people are open to not choosing to live in constant fear"

On this weekend's FAREED ZAKARIA GPS, host Fareed Zakaria spoke with Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, in the Prime Minister’s first interview with a non-Canadian media organization. The wide-ranging interview covered the Syrian refugee crisis, military action and air strikes against ISIS, and how falling oil prices are impacting Canada’s economy.

MANDATORY CREDIT for reference and usage: “CNN’s Fareed Zakaria GPS”

WEB EXTRA: Will TRUDEAU end Canada’s air strikes against ISIS?

http://www.cnn.com/video/data/2.0/video/tv/2016/01/30/exp-gps-sot-trudeau-isis.cnn.html

WEB EXTRA: TRUDEAU on how the collapse of oil prices will impact Canada’s economy

http://www.cnn.com/video/data/2.0/video/tv/2016/01/30/exp-gps-trudeau-sot-oil.cnn.html

FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPT

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

FAREED ZAKARIA, HOST, CNN GPS: Every year at Davos, there’s a country that stands out, attracting attention and admiration. This year it was not so much a nation, but a person.

Justin Trudeau, the new 44-year-old Prime Minister of Canada, was the star of the World Economic Forum. Hollywood actors and CEOs took selfies with him. Women seemed particularly impressed, perhaps because he has appointed a cabinet that is 50 percent female.

Trudeau is an unabashed liberal, with plans to legalize pot, raise taxes on the wealthy, and take climate change seriously. In doing this, he continues the legacy of his father, Pierre Trudeau, who was perhaps Canada's most famous prime minister.

Davos was his debut on the world stage, and my interview was his first with a non-Canadian broadcaster.

FULL POST


Topics: Afghanistan • CNN • Fareed Zakaria • Fareed Zakaria GPS • Iraq • ISIS • Syria • Transcripts
December 14th, 2015
03:52 PM ET

One refugee's dreams of life in America – with @humansofny storyteller, Brandon Stanton

On Sunday Fareed Zakaria interviewed photographer and blogger, Brandon Stanton, the creator of Humans of New York, a photographic digital diary and book that chronicles life in New York City.  Recently, Stanton has been turning his lens to capturing the life of Iraqi and Syrian refugees hoping to come to America.  Zakaria spoke with Stanton and Aya, a Syrian refugee, to learn more about the legal process and excruciating experiences for those fleeing the war zones with dreams of coming to America.

The full transcript for this interview may be found here: http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/1512/13/fzgps.01.html

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Topics: CNN • CNN Intenational Shows • CNN International • CNN U.S. • Fareed Zakaria • Fareed Zakaria GPS • Iraq • ISIS • Syria • Turkey
November 17th, 2015
12:24 PM ET

Former jihadi: apologies of far left, sensationalism of far right blind us to ending "global Jihadist insurgency" #FZGPS

Sunday's CNN’s FAREED ZAKARIA GPS featured an interview with former jihadi and counter-extremism expert Maajid Nawaz, co-founder of Quilliam Foundation, a counter-extremism group. Nawaz discusses how partisan politics in the U.S. and Europe are blinding the world from effectively fighting what he describes as a "global Jihadist insurgency."  Nawaz also discusses why religious extremism is attractive to young people born and raised in the West, and his own journey from extremist to a founder of an organization working to stop radicalization and promote tolerance and democracy.  Below, is a full transcript of the interview – Nawaz also appears in Fareed Zakaria's special one-hour investigation into the origins and aims of the terror group known as "ISIS" or "Daesh," that airs tonight,Tuesday, Nov. 17.  Blindsided: How ISIS Shook the World airs at 9:00pm Eastern on CNN/U.S.

FULL POST


Topics: 2016 Election • Breaking News • CNN • CNN Intenational Shows • CNN U.S. • Fareed Zakaria • Fareed Zakaria GPS • France • Iraq • ISIS • Syria
November 13th, 2015
03:36 PM ET

#FZGPS Preview: Secretary of State John Kerry on U.S. strategy against ISIS

On Sunday, Nov. 15, CNN’s FAREED ZAKARIA GPS will feature an exclusive interview with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on the next steps for the U.S. response to the crisis in Syria and Iraq, whether there is still hope for the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, if Iran’s actions towards the West have improved since the P5+1 nuclear deal, and what to expect from next week’s global conference on climate change.

Below is an excerpt from this exclusive interview which took place in the Benjamin Franklin Room at the U.S. State Department on Thursday.

This interview will air in its entirety on November 15, 2015 at 10am &1pm ET on CNN/U.S.

MANDATORY CREDIT for reference and usage: “CNN’s FAREED ZAKARIA GPS”

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

John Kerry, U.S. Secretary of State: I mean there is a concerted strategy here, Fareed.  You know, I keep hearing people say well, what's the strategy, what's the strategy? The strategy is clear. 

President Obama, at the very beginning, said we're going to degrade and defeat ISIL.  We're going to stabilize the countries in the region - Jordan, Lebanon, work with Turkey - and we are going to seek a political settlement.

That is exactly the strategy today and it is working, to a degree, not as fast as we would like, perhaps, but we are making gains.  We have liberated major communities. About 75 percent of the border between northern Syria and Turkey has been secured.  You have another piece where we are engaging in an operation with the Turks to secure the final piece west of the Euphrates River. 

There is pressure being put on Raqqa.  There are major disruptions to the, uh, leadership, the command and control of ISIL.  Their territory has been shrunk by some 17,000 square kilometers.

There is a difference in the way they have to operate as a result of our operations.  And I believe that when you combine what is happening in Iraq with what is happening in Syria, uh, there's an enormous amount of pressure that is continually being ramped up with respect to ISIL. 

Now, ultimately, we want more forces on the ground to be able to - not ours.  They're going to have to be people on the ground.

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Topics: Breaking News • CNN • CNN International • CNN U.S. • Fareed Zakaria • Fareed Zakaria GPS • Iraq • ISIS • Syria
October 21st, 2015
03:41 PM ET

Long Road to Hell: America in Iraq hosted by CNN’s Fareed Zakaria airs Monday on CNN and CNN International

RTL_end_page_sd

President George W. Bush had a dream that Iraq would become a beacon of hope in the Middle East.   Now, with the region wracked by chaos, civil war, and violence, some U.S. presidential candidates are pledging to order American “boots on the ground” again in Iraq – this time to fight ISIS.  The crucial question is:  do we understand the Iraq we would be going back to?  CNN’s Fareed Zakaria will take a timely look at the reality of what is left of Iraq in Long Road to Hell: America in Iraq.

Zakaria asks tough questions of many of the key architects of America’s military intervention in Iraq over the last dozen years: Who is responsible for the unraveling of Iraq?  Do those who want to send American troops to Iraq again understand the mistakes of the past?  And, is Iraq even a country anymore?

Zakaria was himself an early supporter of the 2003 military intervention in Iraq. Explaining how his views evolved over time, Zakaria points out the consequences of the major strategic choices. He argues there were too few troops sent to maintain post-war order once the American-led coalition had conquered Saddam’s army. And, greater inclusion of the sectarian groups in Iraq could have meant more regional support for the nation-building efforts that followed the collapse of the Baathist regime.

In Long Road to Hell, Zakaria examines these vital pivot points and mistakes – some previously unknown until now. Offering answers and exploring the challenges are:

  • Tony Blair, U.K. Prime Minister (1997 – 2007), Quartet Representative for the Middle East (2007 – 2015);
  • Antony Blinken, U.S. Deputy Secretary of State (2014 – present);
  • Paul Bremer, Presidential Envoy to Iraq (2003 – 2004);
  • Richard Clarke, Special Advisor to the President for Cyberspace (2001 – 2003); National Coordinator for Security and Counterterrorism Czar (1998 – 2003); Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Intelligence (Ronald Reagan Administration);
  • Douglas Feith, Undersecretary of Defense for Policy (2001 – 2005);
  • Peter Galbraith, former U.S. diplomat;
  • Richard Haass, PhD, president, Council on Foreign Relations (2003 – present); former lead U.S. official on Afghanistan and Northern Ireland (2001 – 2003); and
  • Gen. David Petraeus (ret.), Commander, Multi-National Force in Iraq (2007 – 2008); Commander, International Security Assistance Force and Commander, U.S. Forces in Afghanistan (2010 – 2011); Commander, U.S. Central Command (2008 – 2010).

The one-hour primetime special, Long Road to Hell: America in Iraq, hosted by Fareed Zakaria, is scheduled to premiere in simulcast on Monday, Oct. 26 at 9:00pm on CNN/U.S. and CNN International. It will also encore on CNN/U.S. at 12:00am.  Zakaria will be answering questions about this topic via CNN’s Facebook page prior to the special at noon on Monday, Oct. 26. All times Eastern.

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CNN's Arwa Damon reports from 'Doomsday' seed vault in Arctic as Syrian civil war forces early withdrawal
October 19th, 2015
11:01 AM ET

CNN's Arwa Damon reports from 'Doomsday' seed vault in Arctic as Syrian civil war forces early withdrawal

CNN’s senior international correspondent Arwa Damon (@arwacnn) travels to the global seed vault – often referred to as the “Doomsday Vault” – in Svalbard, Norway as scientists in Syria have made an unprecedented request to withdraw seeds to replace samples now inaccessible due to the civil war.

This seed bank, which is tucked deep in the side of a mountain in the Arctic archipelago, contains more than 860,000 frozen seed samples from around the world. It is meant to be humanity’s backup in the event of catastrophe that devastates crops.

Damon also visits a vault in Lebanon’s Bekaa Valley where the International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA) is keeping the seeds from Svalbard until they’re planted at new facilities in Lebanon and Morocco.

ICARDA representative Thanos Tsivelikas, who is overseeing the withdrawal from the vault, describes the operation as "a rescue mission; these seeds cannot be replaced."


Topics: Arwa Damon • Syria
October 4th, 2015
03:09 PM ET

Fareed Zakaria GPS: Benjamin Netanyahu on Russia, Iran, U.S.

On today's FAREED ZAKARIA GPS Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who was in New York for the opening of United Nations General Assembly debate, discussed Israel’s relationships with the United States and Russia, Ukraine, the civil war inside Syria, and Israel’s opposition to the P5 + 1 nuclear deal with Iran – including his reaction to former President Clinton’s assessment of his Congressional speech as ‘unprecedented.’

MANDATORY CREDIT for reference and usage: “CNN’s FAREED ZAKARIA GPS”

VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS

Israel’s Prime Minister Netanyahu on Russia's actions inside Syria

Netanyahu on Palestinian Prime Minister Abbas’ statements rejecting the Oslo Accords – and his son’s calls for citizenship rights

Netanyahu’s reaction to former President Clinton’s assessment of his ‘unprecedented’ Congressional speech

FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPT

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

Fareed Zakaria, host, Fareed Zakaria GPS:  Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was in New York this week to deliver a fiery speech on Thursday to the UN General Assembly.

On Friday, I sat down with him to talk about many topics, all hot buttons at the UN this week: Syria, ISIS, the Iran nuclear deal, and the future of Middle East peace.

Prime Minister, pleasure to have you on.

BENJAMIN NETANYAHU, PRIME MINISTER of ISRAEL:  Good to be back with you, Fareed.

ZAKARIA:   You have painted often a situation that Israel faces that is pretty tough, but I'm now looking at what's going on in Syria and I see Iran all in to try to defend the Assad regime; I see Hezbollah strained, stressed - there are reports that they've lost hundreds, maybe thousands of fighters. Iranian militias are mired there, fighting against ISIS.

Aren't your enemies drained and bleeding right now? Doesn't that give you some space in security terms?

NETANYAHU: Well, that's not exactly what we see. What I see is Iran pushing into Lebanon, into Hezbollah as they’re fighting for Assad; they’re putting inside Lebanon the most devastating weapons on Earth. They’re trying to turn Iran’s rockets that they supplied Hezbollah into precision-guided missiles that can hit any spot in Israel. Hezbollah is putting in SA-22 anti-aircraft missiles that can shoot down our planes, Yakhont anti-ship missiles that can shoot down our gas rigs. That's what we're seeing. And we see Iran trying to establish a second front with Iranian generals in the Golan Heights against Israel.

So we see a different picture. And I've made it very clear what our policy in Syria is. I haven’t intervened in the Syrian internal conflict. But I've said that if anybody wants to use Syrian territory to attack us, we'll take action. If anybody is trying to build a second front against Israel from the Golan, we'll take action. And if anybody wants to use Syrian territory to transfer nuclear weapons to Hezbollah, we'll take action. And we continue to do that.

ZAKARIA: Donald Trump says between Assad and ISIS, he thinks Assad is better. Is Assad better for Israel?

NETANYAHU: Look, I don't know who's better. You know what you have there in Syria, you've got - you've got Assad, you've got Iran, you've got Hezbollah, you've got Daesh, ISIS. You've got these rebels and those rebels. And now you've got Russia. Do you know what's better? I don't know. I know what I have to do to protect the security of Israel.

And the thing that I do is I draw red lines and any time we have the intel, we just keep them. We do not let those actions of aggression against Israel go unpunished.

ZAKARIA: Do you think that Russia's involvement is potentially stabilizing or destabilizing?

NETANYAHU: I don't know. I think time will tell. But I did go to Moscow and spoke very candidly to President Putin and just told him exactly what I just told you. I said these are our policies. We don't want to go back to the days when, you know, Russia and Israel were in an adversarial position. I think we've changed the relationship. And it's, on the whole, good. It's not like the one we have with the United States. Nothing will ever equal that.

But we certainly don't want an adversarial relationship. So we agreed that in a few days’ time, our deputy chiefs of staff will meet to arrange deconfliction - to make sure that we don't bump into Iran. We have different goals. In Syria, I've defined my goals. They're to protect the security of my people and my country. Russia has different goals. But they shouldn't clash.

ZAKARIA: You are a man who has often spoken out against aggression, against, you know - particularly against small countries. One place you have been studiously quiet is Russia's - what many people call aggression against Crimea. And when you were asked about it, you said, well, I've got a lot on my plate. But you are an international statesman. What is your view of what Russia, what Vladimir Putin did in annexing Crimea?

NETANYAHU: We went along with the provisions that the American government put forward. I mean it's very clear we don't approve of this Russian action. But I think we're also cognizant of the fact that we have a - we're bordering Russia right now.

And we are - Israel is a strong country. It's a small strong country. But we also know that we have to make sure that we don't get into unnecessary conflicts. And we have - believe me, we have a lot on our plate. I went to Moscow to make it clear that we should avoid a clash between Russian forces and Israeli forces. That's about as responsible, I think, and statesmanly as I think we should act at this point.

ZAKARIA: What's your view of Putin?

NETANYAHU: Look, there's mutual respect, but that doesn't mean that we have mutual coherence of interests. It's not - it's not the relationship that we have with the United States of America. It never can be. But I think it's important that we make every effort right now to avoid a concussion.

///

ZAKARIA: When we come back, I will ask Prime Minister Netanyahu, the Iran nuclear deal’s biggest opponent, what if any options he has left.

[COMMERCIAL BREAK]

ZAKARIA: Back now to more of my interview with Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who was in New York this week for the UN General Assembly. ///

ZAKARIA: Prime Minister, let me show you a chart. You presented a graphic when you came to the UN, and you detailed exactly what was dangerous about Iran's quest to enrich uranium. And you said this was the key - how much enriched uranium they had. And you drew a line. So I'm going to show you this - this was the - the line you put. This is a chart put out by the White House. And they say, you are right, that Iran was at this point, the red line that you described. But, they say, with this deal, before the sanctions are lifted, Iran has to destroy 98 percent of its enriched uranium; of course, the plutonium pathway, which is the most common way, is blocked, and that the line would have to be drawn way down here.

So I'm asking you, are they right?

NETANYAHU: Look, I'm not going to rehash the deal. I summarized yesterday our main opposition. I didn’t go into the question of centrifuges or R&D or inspections…
ZAKARIA: But are they right? This seems to me - I mean, I asked experts, and they said, yes, if Iran does in the first year before the sanctions are lifted, what it is required to do, it goes - it goes way down.

NETANYAHU: Well, there are a lot of questions that will remain open on this question. But there's one that isn't, and that is that after year 10 and after year 15, all these limitations are lifted. And therefore, Iran will be free to get to the point where it's at the threshold level of producing the fissile material, the nuclear - the indispensable nuclear material, through enrichment, to make an arsenal of nuclear bombs.

ZAKARIA: But they're there right now, as per Bibi Netanyahu's speech two years ago.

NETANYAHU: But they were - but they were held back because of biting sanctions that are now going to be removed.

So I don't want to rehash this. And I was very clear about that. I didn't go into the details. I said, OK, now that it's done, let's look forward. Let's keep Iran's feet to the fire. Let's make sure that they keep all their obligations under the nuclear deal. That's the first thing.

Second thing - let's block Iran's other aggression in the region, because they're doing everything. They're trying to encircle Israel with a noose of death. They're sending weapons to the Houthis. They're in Iraq. They're in Afghanistan. They're all over the place. In Yemen, of course. Let's bolster those forces to stand up to Iran's aggression in the region, and none is stronger, none is more reliable than Israel. So I look forward to discussing President Obama's offer to bolster Israel's security when I visit the United States in November.

And the third thing I said - and I drew attention to something that is not well known - let's tear down Iran's global terror network. They're in over 30 countries. They're establishing terror cells in the Western Hemisphere alongside the Eastern Hemisphere. These are things that we agree on.

Yes, we had a disagreement in the family, as President Obama and I both said. But we have no disagreement about blocking Iran's aggression and working against its terrorism. And I think that's what we should focus on now.

ZAKARIA: Last week, Bill Clinton, on this program, said that he thought your speech to the United States Congress at the invitation of John Boehner was unprecedented. And I asked him then, was it unwise? He said, you'll have to ask Prime Minister Netanyahu that.

Was it unwise?

NETANYAHU: I'll ask you a question. If the President of the United States thought that a deal was being forged that would endanger the security and even the very survival of the United States, wouldn't you expect him to speak up at every place, at every forum?

And the answer is, of course you would. That was my obligation. Again, I don't think that we should rehash this. But I think we should focus on what we do agree must be done right now.

President Obama was - called me up at the time that the deal was being debated. And he said, I'd like to talk to you about bolstering Israel's security, about maintaining its qualitative military edge, about preventing things from going into Iran's proxies. Would you like to do that now, or would you like to do it later? And I said I'd like to do it later, the day after.

Well, today in my conversation with John Kerry, this is the day after. And we began that conversation. Our secretary - our minister of defense will be coming to Washington to meet Secretary Carter in a few weeks. And after that, I'll meet President Obama.

I look forward to discussing this with the President. I think it's a very important stage to help us face the challenges that we face.

ZAKARIA: If two years from now, Iran has, in fact, destroyed 98 percent of its en - highly enriched uranium, if the Fordow and Arak facilities have been rendered inoperable, will you call President Obama and say, you know what, maybe this worked a little better than I thought it did?

NETANYAHU: I'll be the happiest person in the world if my concerns prove to be wrong. I - you know, the opposite could also happen, you know.

But I think the issue right now is - it's a practical question right now. It's not an ideological question. It's not a political question. It's a practical question - do they keep the agreement?

And second, what happens 15 years from now, or 10 years from now, when they're basically absolved of any restrictions, which is the main point I've been making. Because, see, they get all these restrictions lifted regardless of their policy. If they continue their aggression...

ZAKARIA: But you get 15 years with no nuclear - with a non-nuclear Iran.

NETANYAHU: Well, assuming they don't cheat.

ZAKARIA: Right.

NETANYAHU: And second, you're also assuming that they would have gone on and continued in the face of very strong sanctions and a military threat. We can - we can argue that. But that's not my purpose now.

My purpose is to focus on what we do agree on. And we absolutely agree on the need to block Iran's aggression in the region. That was never part of the deal - that you let them have a free reign. And the second thing is how to bolster Israel's security, and, by the way, other allies that are facing this same Iranian threat.

And I'd also draw attention to their global terror network. That - these are things that we can concentrate on, and we agree on, and we should cooperate on, and we will cooperate on.  ///

ZAKARIA: When we come back, did any lingering hopes for Middle East peace just blow up at the UN this week? I’ll ask the Prime Minister when we come back.

[COMMERCIAL BREAK]

ZAKARIA: Prime Minister, you know that the Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas has said that he is essentially not going to follow the Oslo process - they will not abide by it any more. You mentioned it in your speech. I want to ask you, since it does feel like the peace process is dead, you know, if it ever had much life in it, about his son. There have been reports…

NETANYAHU: His son?

ZAKARIA: His son has - there are a couple of reports which talked about - a New York Times report, where he gave an interview, and he said, I'm not for my father's plan. I think the peace process is dead. I don't want a two-state solution. I want a one-state solution. I just want rights. I just want political rights. If you're not going to give me a state, give me political rights.

You know that there are other Palestinians who feel this way. In fact, there's Khalil Shikaki, a pollster, who say about a third of Palestinians now, and it is more for younger Palestinians, want just political rights. Will they get them?

NETANYAHU: Well, I think that the right solution is a demilitarized Palestinian state that recognizes the Jewish state. They want a Palestinian state; we have a Jewish state. We should have mutual recognition of these two nation states and provisions on the ground by which Israel can defend itself by itself. And I think that's eminently preferable to the idea of a unitary state, which I don't want.

I think the reason the peace process doesn't get - doesn't move forward is because the Palestinians have basically two provisions there. I mean, one is you've got to renounce terrorism and act against it. And unfortunately, that's not what they're doing. We just had, you know, a young mother and a young father brutally murdered by Palestinian terrorists - four little orphans in the back of the car. And President Abbas has yet to denounce this.

I mean, on the rare occasions that we have - and we do have, on certain occasions, acts of terrorism by Jews, we always go there like gangbusters. We condemn it. We do everything we can to find them and to fight them.

I expect President Abbas to do the same. So one is, you have to stop this incitement against Israel, because incitement leads to acts of terrorism. But the second thing is you've got to stay in the process. You've got to come and sit on the table.

ZAKARIA: Why not use this opportunity to make a bold counter offer, not just a process one, but an actual proposal for a Palestinian state?

NETANYAHU: Well, I've made several offers, but, you know, the only way - his offers and my offers obviously don't cohere - and I said, look, the only way you're going to do this is let's sit around the table. Here's the litmus test for you…

ZAKARIA: But he says the problem is you're building settlements, even in…

NETANYAHU: Well, I, you know…

ZAKARIA: - even in Area C…

NETANYAHU: - I think the problem is he's inciting terrorism. I think the problem is he's spreading lies about the Temple Mount and what we're doing there. We're the guardians of the Temple Mount - for God's sake, without Israel, you know, what’ll happen on those sacred sites would be what happened in Palmyra in Syria.

ZAKARIA: You…

NETANYAHU: But he - so I have complaints; he has complaints. There's only one way to get a peace process going, peace negotiations going - you've got to sit down and negotiate.

Yet in the seven years that I've been now in - sitting in the prime minister's office in Israel, we haven't had seven hours that he was willing to talk. And it's not because of me. The fact is, I'm willing to have this conversation. He's not.

ZAKARIA: Well he says you're creating facts on the ground...

NETANYAHU: Well so is he…

ZAKARIA: - by building settlements.

NETANYAHU: So is he. He's creating a lot of facts on the ground, and bad facts.

ZAKARIA: - OK, a last question.

You talked about terrorism against Palestinians, terrorism by Israelis. President - the president of Israel says - wonders - he posed this question, why is this culture of extremism flourishing in Israel right now? Do you think that there is an atmosphere that has - that has incited or allowed this kind of extremism to flourish?

NETANYAHU: No, I think the test is not whether societies have extremists; the question is what do the - what does the mainstream do about it. In our case, we go wild against them. Every part of our society unites against any example of terrorism in our midst.

But what I say in Ramallah is that President Abbas calls public squares in honor of mass murderers. And that's unfortunate - that's not - it's a tragedy, I think - for us and the Palestinians, too. The culture of peace, the culture of acceptance, a culture of diversity, you know, for women, for Christians, for gays and so on, is very much ingrained in our culture. And that's why we don't educate our people that we have to destroy the Palestinian. We want peace with the Palestinians. But for that, we have to sit down. And I think that's one order of the day.

And the other order of the day is what I said before. I think we have to protect ourselves against the rising tide of militant Islam - religious fanaticism that is threatening all of us. And Israel is there. It's standing in the breach. And I appreciate the fact that despite our disagreement on the Iran nuclear deal, both the supporters of the deal and the opponents of the deal, those who supported it, those who oppose it, they all agree now we have to strengthen Israel.

And I think that's the best guarantor of peace.

ZAKARIA: Prime Minister Netanyahu, thank you so much.

NETANYAHU: Thank you.  Thank you, Fareed.

### END ###


Topics: CNN • CNN International • Fareed Zakaria • Fareed Zakaria GPS • Iran • Israel • Russia • Syria • Ukraine
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