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France Hints at Changing Stance Over Two-State Solution In Palestinian-Israeli Conflict

France Hints at Changing Stance Over Two-State Solution In Palestinian-Israeli Conflict

Thursday, 8 October, 2020 - 09:00
People hold a Palestinian flag during a protest against the normalization (Reuters)

The Palestinian leadership will discuss with French officials the recent reports claiming Paris has changed its position on the two-state solution, according to a top Palestinian source.

The source explained that if France has another solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, then it must present it and show prove how it could be implemented.

He stressed that Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and the leadership still insist on a two-state solution, with Palestine as an independent state with the 1967 borders and Jerusalem as its capital.

The source stressed that it is not possible to establish a single state because it requires granting Palestinians in the West Bank, Gaza, and Jerusalem equal rights with Israelis, which Tel Aviv won’t accept or allow.

This also means that Palestinians will have the same rights as Israeli citizenship holders, including candidacy and voting in any elections.

Recent reports claimed that the French ambassador to Israel, Eric Danon, said that Paris is working to change its position on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.

Speaking during a session with a research center promoting strategic relations between Europe and Israel, Danon said that France will not negotiate on behalf of the Palestinians.

He indicated that it is a bilateral issue and France wants to take into account the new situation and return to the negotiations.

The envoy indicated that France prefers a two-state solution, but that doesn’t mean they can’t accept something else, adding that his country will accept any solution agreed upon by the Palestinians and the Israelis.

The French ambassador added that six months ago, no one could have imagined Israel, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain would sign a peace agreement.

He said the Middle East has completely changed because of the United States, Iran, and Turkey, adding that Israel has become a new regional power.

The Palestinians must take into account their weak position on the international and Arab arenas, stressed Danon.

Diplomatic sources in Paris revealed that France does not rule out the possibility of a different solution for the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, according to the Maariv newspaper.

The diplomats explained that the French diplomacy is having difficulty backing the two-state solution because it has become unrealistic.

They told Maariv that the ambassador was clear in saying that if Israelis and Palestinians reached a solution, France will not reject it, stressing the importance of resuming negotiations as soon as possible. They warned that Palestinians could lose everything now.

The idea of the one-state has been discussed before among Palestinian and US officials, considering the establishment of two states is far-fetched and impossible. However, the Authority has always rejected this idea.

The Palestinian leadership continues to adhere to internationally sponsored negotiations leading to an independent Palestinian state, despite the dramatic international and regional developments regarding the peace process and the ties with Israel.

However, Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh said that the US-Israeli pressure on the Palestinians will cease after the US elections.

Shtayyeh criticized “the joint US-Israeli pressure in favor of the re-election of US President Donald Trump,"

He called upon “some Arab brethren to learn from history,” indicating that Tel Aviv does not respect the promises made, urging them not to be deceived by Israel.

He pointed out that Palestine is “still living in harsh circumstances, including the financial siege and pressures.” However, he also expressed his confidence that the Palestinians will survive the siege and achieve national unity.

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