Asharq Al-awsat English Middle-east and International News and Opinion from Asharq Al-awsat Newspaper

Palestinian PM: Int’l Peace Conference Will Advance Political Process

Palestinian PM: Int’l Peace Conference Will Advance Political Process

Tuesday, 27 October, 2020 - 07:45
Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh in his office in Ramallah (Reuters)

The Palestinian leadership is looking forward to holding an international peace conference which would help establish a Palestinian state and advance the political process, said Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh.

Speaking during a cabinet session, Shtayyeh explained that the government wants an international peace conference to achieve the two-state solution, end Israeli occupation, and ensure the independence of the Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital.

The PM stated that Palestinians look forward to this step after the US administration of President Donald Trump administration tried to divert away from the principles of international legitimacy.

Shtayyeh also rejected the new Sudan-Israel deal, saying it was “painful.”

He reiterated that any Arab relations with Israel should be based on the Arab peace initiative and the decisions of successive Arab summits, stressing that only Palestinians have the right to determine their fate.

Last month, Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas submitted a request to the UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, to decide on initial steps and prepare an international peace conference.

The president tried to persuade multiple countries to adopt his position and call for an international peace conference.

The Palestinians want to launch an international conference attended by the Quartet and other countries to launch a multilateral mechanism to sponsor negotiations with the Israelis, based on Security Council Resolution 1515, which states that the Palestinian land is the occupied territories with 1967 borders.

In August, the PA informed the international Quartet of its intention to return to negotiations with the Arab peace plan as a reference.

In a letter addressed to the Quartet, the PA reiterated “we are ready to have our state with a limited number of weapons and a powerful police force to uphold law and order.”

The PA also indicated that it would accept an international force mandated by the UN to monitor compliance with any eventual peace treaty, hinting at NATO.

The text proposes minor amendments to the borders, provided that a bilateral agreement will be concluded regarding the borders of June 1967, the date on which Israel first occupied the West Bank.

The Quartet, comprised of the EU, Russia, US, and the UN was established in 2002 to facilitate the Middle-East Peace Process negotiations.

The Palestinians believe that this plan is the alternative to the US proposal, the so-called “deal of the century,” but sources told Asharq Al-Awsat that Washington refused it.

The Quartet asked the Palestinians to attend negotiations first, then suggest amendments to the “deal of the century", without proposing any new plans.

Russia supports the Palestinian proposal, according to Palestinian Ambassador to Russia Abdelhafiz Nofal, who said that Moscow supports Abbas’s initiative to hold an international peace conference.

Russia recognizes the crisis and its repercussions, as well as the need for the international community to take a decisive, clear and supportive stance for specific outcomes that put an end to this conflict, while affirming Palestinians' rights, according to Nofal.

He believes that any international conference in this regard must include the five countries, including the United States, which claims it can’t be involved because of the upcoming presidential elections.

Editor Picks