Israel, Egypt Officials Meet to ‘Find Our Path Forward’ to Middle East Peace

Israeli PM Netanyahu and Egyptian FM Shoukry. Photo courtesy of  by Haim Zach / GPO

Israeli PM Netanyahu and Egyptian FM Shoukry. Photo courtesy of by Haim Zach / GPO

The Palestinians are still refusing to discuss peace with Israel, so perhaps the next best thing is that Egypt is currently talking to both sides about the same issue—even if things do not appear to have even reached the mediation stage yet. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made it clear to visiting Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry that he wishes things were further along with the Palestinians, even as he is grateful for what Egypt is doing now.

“I welcome [Egyptian] President [Abdel Fattah] el-Sisi’s recent offer of Egyptian leadership in efforts to advance peace with the Palestinians and a broader peace in our region,” said Netanyahu in comments with Shoukry published by his office. “Today I call again on the Palestinians to follow the greatest example of Egypt and Jordan and join us for direct negotiations. This is the only way we can address all the outstanding problems between us, and turn the vision of peace based on two states for two peoples into a reality.” Shoukry, who met with the Palestinian leadership a couple weeks ago, said his visit to Israel was part of the same overall discussion.

“I am in Israel to continue the same dialogue, so that together we may find our path forward towards understanding and undertaking serious steps to uphold international legitimacy, as well as respect the treaties and agreements previously reached by the two parties to the conflict, in order to realize the two-state solution,” said Shoukry in the Israeli press release.

The Egyptian diplomat mentioned the Israeli concerns about peace and security in the conflict with the Palestinians, but nonetheless sounded very firm on his expectations of what a peace can i buy phentermine in mexico deal with the Palestinians would look like—with what sounded like little room to negotiate. He noted the Palestinian aspiration to have an “independent state based on 1967 borders, with East Jerusalem as its capital”—which has been the Palestinian position for decades and forms the basis of the rather one-sided Arab Peace Initiative.

“The vision of the two state solution is not farfetched,” said Shoukry. “A multitude of ideas and initiative have been proposed to make it a practical reality—particularly the Arab peace initiative. However, achieving this vision requires serious steps to build confidence as well as a genuine will that does not waver of wane under any circumstance.”

Nonetheless, while the Palestinians have been rejecting direct peace talks between they and the Israelis, Egypt sounds at least willing listen to both sides directly themselves.

“I would like to assure that Egypt’s commitment to supporting a just, comprehensive and sustainable resolution for the Palestinian-Israeli conflict and to supporting peace and security in the Middle East is a steadfast and unwavering commitment, and that the Egyptian leadership is serious in its determination to provide all possible forms of support in order to achieve this noble goal,” said Shoukry, noting he looked “forward to addressing the prospects of peace in depth” during his talk with Netanyahu.

The Israeli leader, meanwhile, pointed to the success of the peace accords with Egypt and Jordan as the ideal example for resolution to the Palestinian conflict. “The peace treaty between Israel and Egypt and between Israel and Jordan are the cornerstone of stability in the region, and are critical assets for our countries,” said Netanyahu. “They are also the cornerstones of a broader regional peace and a broader stability that we hope to achieve.”

(By Joshua Spurlock,, July 10, 2016)



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