Alone among G8 leaders, the Canadian Prime Minister refuses to embrace the U.S. President’s plan to begin peace negotiations between Palestinians and Israelis on the basis of a return to Israel’s de facto borders as they existed before its 1967 war with neighbouring Arab countries – a precondition, accepted by Arabs and by many previous Israeli leaders and Canadian governments, that would be necessary to get Palestinians back to the table.Also: On Mideast peace and Arab Spring, Harper stands apart.
Mr. Harper made his opposition to that position clear through a spokesperson shortly after Mr. Obama’s Middle East speech last week in a pre-G8 briefing, making him the lone leader in the G8 not to back the U.S. preconditions.
A unified statement on a negotiated path to a Palestinian state had been a key goal of the Deauville summit, in large part because such a statement might have pre-empted an attempt to pass a United Nations resolution that would declare a Palestinian state against Israel’s will.
I'm not sure what's going on with Harper. Besides the importance of Canada's relationship with the US, Canada's interest is in a peaceful resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, while Netanyahu appears to want to hold onto the land rather than trading it for peace. Jonathan Kay, writing in the National Post: Netanyahu just made it harder to stand up for Israel.