French Consul General in Jerusalem, Herve Magro, has reiterated France’s hopes for its ongoing peace initiative to solve the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, stating that it remained “the central issue in the Middle East.”
Magro stated: “Negotiations between the Palestinians and Israel are not only suspended, but ruptured, and this is dangerous, as this rupture threatens stability in the whole region.”
Magro added that the French initiative includes a clear time-frame which would prevent Palestinians from feeling that they were headed into “endless negotiations”.
— Ma'an News Agency (@MaanNewsAgency) July 26, 2016
Highlighting the importance of international participation in solving the conflict, he stated, “We want as much participation of the international community as possible.”
When asked if a bilateral initiative proposed by Egyptian President, Abd al al-Fattah al-Sisi, could become a replacement for the French initiative, Magro added that he believed any Egyptian proposal would “support the French initiative rather than contradict it.”
While Palestinian leadership has welcomed the French initiative, Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, has come out against the French-led efforts, saying that for Israel the only solution to the decades-long conflict is through saw bilateral negotiations, as proposed by Egypt, with no Palestinian preconditions.
In the meanwhile…Arab summit in Mauritania welcomes French Initiative to revive Palestinian-Israeli peace efforts https://t.co/BBoJM9pjJI
— Shibley Telhami (@ShibleyTelhami) July 25, 2016
Magro dismissed Netanyahu’s statements, saying, “Whether Israel accepts the French initiative or not, that will not jeopardize the thinking mechanism seeking to create a positive environment for a solution.”
He added, “The Prime Minister can welcome al-Sisi’s proposal and reject the French initiative, but … (t)he French initiative already exists, has a time-frame, and would lead to an international summit by the end of this year.”