Arab, European states name Israel and Palestine to restart talks | Jordan

Foreign ministers from France, Egypt, Germany and Jordan support the start of the talks on the basis of a two-state solution.

Foreign ministers from four Arab and European countries meeting in Jordan said a two-state solution was the only way to end the long-running Israeli-Palestinian conflict and called for negotiations between the two sides to resume.

The top diplomats from France, Egypt and Jordan held a meeting in Amman on Thursday. The German Heiko Maas joined online when he had to be quarantined the day before due to a coronavirus horror.

There would be “no comprehensive and lasting peace without resolving the conflict on the basis of the two-state solution,” Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman al-Safadi told reporters after the meeting.

“There is no other solution,” agreed French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian. The Palestinians and Israelis need to show their commitment to dialogue, “and we stand ready to support this process,” he added.

Arab-Israeli deals praised

The four ministers also praised the recent agreements establishing relations between Israel and the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain.

Maas welcomed the agreements, which “show that peace in the region is possible”. Egyptian Sameh Shoukry also said the deals were “an important development that would lead to more support and interaction to achieve a comprehensive peace”.

Egypt was the first Arab country to sign a peace treaty with Israel in 1979. Jordan followed in 1994. Last week the UAE and Bahrain signed US-brokered treaties with Israel, which resulted in Palestinian condemnation.

The Palestinians view the two agreements as treason that further weakens a longstanding pan-Arab position that calls for Israel’s withdrawal from the occupied territory and acceptance of Palestinian statehood in return for establishing relations with Arab countries.

On Tuesday, Palestine gave up its current chairmanship of the Arab League meetings and condemned all Arab agreements with Israel as dishonorable.

Earlier this month, the Palestinians failed to convince the Arab League to condemn member states who break their ranks and sign formal treaties with Israel.

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