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

 

Support For Mideast Peace Goes Beyond Annapolis


Support for Mideast Peace Goes Beyond Annapolis Conference

Expect continued intensive diplomacy from Washington as Palestinian and Israeli leaders build on the success of the U.S.-sponsored Annapolis Conference, says a top U.S. diplomat.

"There are a lot of historical reasons to be skeptical, but we see this as an unprecedented moment of hope and opportunity for Israelis and Palestinians," Thomas Goldberger, director of the State Department's Office of Israel and Palestinian Affairs, said in a December 6 USINFO webchat.

At the November 27 conference held at the U.S. Naval Academy, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert announced they would restart talks on December 12, with the goal of a peace treaty by the end of 2008 that would lead to the establishment of a Palestinian state, living together with Israel in peace and security.

"Those are nice words," said Goldberger, whose office supports U.S. efforts to help the peace process, "but more interesting is where we go from here to get to the creation of a Palestinian state."

The first component of the way forward is the political process, he said, where Israeli and Palestinian negotiators will confront the thorniest issues at the heart of a half-century of conflict: the borders of a new Palestinian state, the right of return for millions of Palestinian refugees, security guarantees to safeguard people on both sides of the border, equitable distribution of scarce water resources, the status of Israeli outposts and settlements and the status of Jerusalem.

"It may not be the best way of thinking to talk about concessions," Goldberger replied when a participant in Malaysia asked him to speculate on how both sides will bridge these issues. "Instead, they need to be thinking together about how they can build a better future for Israeli and Palestinian people in which both are better off, safer, and happier than they are today."

Senior U.S. officials will be traveling to the region to help the leaders as the talks progress, Goldberger said, and the Quartet for Middle East Peace (the United States, Russia, the European Union and the United Nations) will continue to meet frequently to provide political support.

On December 4, the White House announced that President Bush would travel to the region in January 2008.

Next, Goldberger said, is the confidence-building process enshrined in the Quartet's "road map" -- a comprehensive plan to resolve political, economic, security and humanitarian issues to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. In Annapolis, both sides agreed to continue implementing the plan, and asked the United States to take on a new role as "monitor and judge" of their progress.

Finally, Goldberger said, is the need for a continued international support for the creation of a Palestinian state.

Goldberger said 90 countries are expected to take part in an international donors' conference in Paris December 17.


ENDS

More: Latest World News | Top World News | World Digest | Archives

© 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