Arab FMs propose multilateral mechanism to sponsor Mideast peace process

Feb 02, 2018, 20:51
Arab FMs propose multilateral mechanism to sponsor Mideast peace process

It follows President Donald Trump's announcement in December declaring Jerusalem to be Israel's capital which has created reverberations through the region and countered decades of USA foreign policy and worldwide consensus that Jerusalem's status should be decided in negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians.

For the Palestinians, the right for descendants to return to homes they either fled or were forced out of is a prerequisite for any peace agreement with Israel, but it is a demand the Jewish state has rejected out of hand.

The Palestinians are also angry at the Trump administration's announcement last month that it is withholding $65 million of a planned $125 million funding installment for UNRWA, the United Nations agency that helps an estimated 5 million Palestinian refugees.

Abbas is reportedly planning to give a speech to the UN Security Council on February 20th, in NY, after a trip to Russia where he will meet Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Earlier in January, the UN Security Council voted against the American recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

The ministers reaffirmed support to the Palestinian bid for full United Nations membership and asked the Arab diplomatic missions to the United Nations in NY to adopt the necessary measures for lobbing global support for the Palestinian quest in this regard.

As for the peace process, the ministers underlined the need to work with worldwide actors to establish a multilateral global mechanism under the auspices of the United Nations to sponsor the peace process.

The Trump administration may publicly unveil its Israeli-Palestinian peace proposal even if the Palestinian Authority maintains its refusal to resume talks brokered by the United States, an Israeli TV report said Thursday.

"Let Jordan take the West Bank, let Egypt take Gaza".

The Palestinians have frozen contacts with the Trump administration over the decision and said the United States can no longer mediate in the Middle East conflict following Trump's decision.

Palestinian foreign minister Riyad al-Malki told reporters in Cairo that the "old mechanism has ceased to exist and is history".

According to a new Axios report, the White House is allegedly considering moving forward with a "peace plan" for the region even if the Palestinians are unwilling to participate and negotiate.

Saudi Arabia has denied endorsing such a plan and said they are committed to the two states solution based on 1967 borders.