Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation

Peres prepares for a return to politics at the age of 91

    Shimon Peres with Pope Francis and Mahmoud Abbas at the Vatican
    Shimon Peres with Pope Francis and Mahmoud Abbas at the Vatican

    As Israel's president, Shimon Peres, joined Pope Francis and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in the Vatican for an interfaith prayer service, few in Israel were under the illusion that they were watching Peres's final conciliatory act.

    Upon landing in Rome, he told reporters with a smile "I can't talk politics," but the inference was clear. Once he is freed from the golden shackles of his office, he certainly does intend to talk politics.

    The fact that Mr Peres was publicly embracing the Palestinian president in Rome, only days after the Netanyahu government decided to sever all contact with new Hamas-backed Palestinian government was not lost on Israeli observers.

    Similarly, when he visits Washington and New York in two weeks on his last official visit abroad as president, many will be making comparisons between the rapturous reception awaiting him at the White House and the tense relationship between President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

    While Mr Peres has refrained from criticising the Prime Minister directly, in recent speeches and interviews, he has come out stridently in favour of continuing the peace process with the Palestinians - in contrast with the line taken by the Prime Ministers' office.

    Many will compare his rapturous US reception with Bibi's cold one

    "Of course Shimon isn't retiring," said one of his closest aides last week. "Anyone who hopes he will quietly go away to write his memoirs is going to be deeply disappointed."

    Mr Peres's new office has already been prepared for him at the Peres Peace Centre in Jaffa and a full personal staff has been hired.

    Few expect Mr Peres, who will be 91 in August, to run for office again. He is more likely to try and fill the current leadership vacuum in the "peace camp" either by working behind the scenes to unify the four centre-left parties or by serving as the godfather of a new pro-peace party.

Israel

Israel fire eyewitness: 'We were trying to out-...

Orlando Radice

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Israel fire eyewitness: 'We were trying to out-...
Israel

Arabs and Palestinians around the world celebra...

JC Reporter

Friday, November 25, 2016

Arabs and Palestinians around the world celebra...
Israel

Bibi faces probe over subs deal

Anshel Pfeffer

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Bibi faces probe over subs deal
Israel

Meet the rabbi that's making waves

Tim Marshall

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Meet the rabbi that's making waves
Israel

Tens of thousands evacuated as bush fires rage ...

JC Reporter

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Tens of thousands evacuated as bush fires rage ...
Israel

Israeli rabbis, Hamas founder call for peace

Nathan Jeffay

Israeli rabbis, Hamas founder call for peace
Israel

Israeli navy submarine deal could be sunk

Anshel Pfeffer

Israeli navy submarine deal could be sunk
Israel

New cases for the Negev's genetic detective

Nathan Jeffay

New cases for the Negev's genetic detective
Israel

Israeli rabbis in hot water

Anshel Pfeffer

Israeli rabbis in hot water