World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 

Foreign Minister Fischer's trip to the Middle East


Foreign Minister Fischer's trip to the Middle East

German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer visited Israel and the Palestinian Authority from April 7 to 9. During this time he held meetings with Israeli President Moshe Katsav, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom, as well as with Palestinian President Yasser Arafat and Prime Minister designate Mahmud Abbas. Fischer characterized his visit as a "gesture of friendship and solidarity in difficult times".

Peace process

The war in Iraq and the efforts being undertaken by the international community to achieve a political solution of the Middle East conflict were the subjects discussed at the meetings held. Particular attention was given to the "roadmap" for peace in the region supported by the United States, the European Union, the United Nations, and Russia. The peace process to be initiated under this plan is aimed at formal recognition of Israel's right to exist within secure borders and the creation of a democratic Palestine. The prerequisite for this happening is that concessions be made by Israelis and Palestinians within established time limits, for instance with regard to ending Israeli settlement activity on Palestinian land and with regard to reform of the Palestinian Authority. In accordance with the roadmap negotiations are to be conducted that will lead to the creation of a Palestinian state by 2005.

Israel's right to exist non-negotiable

After meeting with his Israeli counterpart Silvan Shalom in Jerusalem on April 7 Fischer said Israel's right to exist and its right to peace without terror are non-negotiable. Shalom, who has only been in office for a few weeks and for whom the meeting with Fischer was the first visit by a foreign minister to his new ministry, gave his assurances that Israel is willing to make genuine efforts to achieve peace. Fischer and Shalom underscored the importance of the US role in the peace process.

After meeting with President Katsav in Jerusalem on April 8 Fischer appealed to Israelis and Palestinians to increase their efforts to achieve a peaceful settlement of their conflict, saying that the terror and the violence will have to end.

Continuation of reforms

In meetings with Arafat and Abbas on April 9 Fischer noted that a real breakthrough in the peace process is going to be needed and emphasized the urgency of reforming the Palestinian Authority. He said he expects to see the rapid formation of a Palestinian cabinet so that the peace plan drawn up by the United States, the European Union, the United Nations, and Russia can be implemented. In Ramallah Fischer met with members of the Palestinian reform committee who assured him that the reform process will be continued.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Rohingya Muslims Massacred: Restrictions On Aid Put 1000s At Risk

Amnesty: The Myanmar authorities’ restrictions on international aid in Rakhine state is putting tens of thousands of lives at risk in a region where mainly Rohingya people are already suffering horrific abuses from a disproportionate military campaign. More>>

ALSO:

Werewolf: Gordon Campbell On North Korea, Neo-Nazism, And Milo

With a bit of luck the planet won’t be devastated by nuclear war in the next few days. US President Donald Trump will have begun to fixate on some other way to gratify his self-esteem – maybe by invading Venezuela or starting a war with Iran. More>>

ALSO:

Victory Declared: New Stabilisation Funding From NZ As Mosul Is Retaken

New Zealand has congratulated the Iraqi government on the successful liberation of Mosul from ISIS after a long and hard-fought campaign. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Current US Moves Against North Korea

If Martians visited early last week, they’d probably be scratching their heads as to why North Korea was being treated as a potential trigger for global conflict... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Lessons From Corbyn’s Campaign

Leaving partisan politics aside – and ignoring Jeremy Corbyn’s sensational election campaign for a moment – it has to be said that Britain is now really up shit creek... More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 
 
  • Pacific.Scoop
  • Cafe Pacific
  • PMC