From left: Amnon Shahua, chairman and chief technology officer of Mobileye, Klaus Froehlich, member of the management board at BMW, and Brian Krzanich, chief executive officer of Intel Corp., at a press event at Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Jan. 4, 2017
The U.S. chipmaker Intel will pay $14.7 billion to acquire the driverless technology firm Mobileye in what reportedly is the largest-ever purchase of an Israeli high-tech company.
In a joint announcement Monday, the companies said the combination “is expected to accelerate innovation for the automotive industry and position Intel as a leading technology provider in the fast-growing market for highly and fully autonomous vehicles.”
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel called Mobileye CEO Ziv Aviram to congratulate him, calling the deal in a tweet a source of “Israeli pride.”
Jason Greenblatt, left, meeting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during a visit to Jerusalem, March 13, 2017.
Jason Greenblatt, President Donald Trump’s adviser on international relations, is touring Israel and the Palestinian areas to gauge attitudes to peacemaking and there will likely not be any developments from the trip, a Trump administration spokesman said.
“He’s really there to listen to both sides and how they perceive getting to a peace process,” Mark Toner, the State Department spokesman, said Monday in the daily briefing for reporters. “I don’t expect any big developments out of this trip.”
Trump has expressed an eagerness to bring about a peace deal while retreating from 15 years of U.S. policy backing a two-state outcome to the peace process.
On Friday, Trump spoke on the phone with Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian Authority president, and the White House readout of the call sounded bullish on the prospects for peace.
“The President emphasized his personal belief that peace is possible and that the time has come to make a deal,” the readout said. “The President noted that such a deal would not only give Israelis and Palestinians the peace and security they deserve, but that it would reverberate positively throughout the region and the world.”
By Josh Rogin: The Trump administration’s budding efforts to establish a new Middle East diplomatic process are about to run into some stiff headwinds at home. Many in Congress want to cancel all U.S. aid to the Palestinians because of payments made to militants who attack Israelis. President Trump will soon have to decide if confronting the Palestinians on that terrorist incitement is more urgent than pursuing a pathway to peace.
Trump conducted his first phone call with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on Friday, and White House Israel affairs adviser Jason Greenblatt is headed to the region this week. On Greenblatt’s agenda will be whether the U.S. and Israeli governments should raise the pressure on the Palestinian Authority to stop paying the families of Palestinians imprisoned or killed after attacking Israeli or American civilians, a practice both governments believe incentivizes violence.
A monument in a Ramallah square dedicated to the terrorist Dalal Mughrabi
As part of an ongoing investigation, a British daily revealed on Sunday that 24 Palestinian Authority schools are openly ignoring Western demands to cease encouraging violence against Israelis — or else forfeit foreign aid.
According to the Daily Mail, despite public outrage over the UK government’s payments to the PA as part of a commitment to spend £12 billion on foreign aid – following an expose by the paper last year about how taxpayers’ money was going toward paying salaries to convicted terrorists and families of suicide bombers — the schools in question have been continuing to incite students to terrorism through text books and classroom indoctrination.
President Donald Trump invited Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to the White House.
Abbas and Trump spoke on Friday and a Palestinian Authority spokesman soon after reported the invitation, saying the meeting would be aimed at reviving the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, which has been dormant since 2014.
Sean Spicer, the White House spokesman, confirmed the invitation later Friday but did not add details.
Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu (R) meets with British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson in London,
Britain will reportedly seek to bolster economic ties with Israel following the United Kingdom’s decision to leave the European Union last year.
Israel and Britain will set up a working group to negotiate trade deals between the two countries, the UK’s Guardian newspaper reported on Sunday.
According to the report, a team of two to four officials from each country will meet by the end of March, and the group is expected to continue meeting two or three times a year to hammer out economic agreements.
Secretary-General of the United Nations Antonio Guterres denounced in a periodic report on the implementation of resolution 1701, the recent statements made by Hizbullah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah against Israel, rejecting “deterrence” justifications which “increases the risk of tension and could lead to renewed war,” An Nahar daily reported on Friday.
The report encouraged President Michel Aoun to resume national dialogue among political parties until a defense strategy is agreed to remove weaponry from Hizbullah and other armed groups, according to the daily.
The report, which consists of 91 paragraphs and prepared by the Special Coordinator for the United Nations in Lebanon Sigrid Kaag citing a comprehensive assessment of the implementation of Security Council resolution 1701, is the first for Guterres since he took office on the first of January.
In the report, Guterres welcomed the “institutional and political progress” made in recent months in Lebanon, saying it “represents an opportunity to further strengthen the Lebanese state’s authority and expand it.” Nevertheless it added that “Retention of arms by Hizbullah and other groups undermines the state’s authority and contradicts with the duties of the country under resolutions 1559 and 1701.”