United States President Barack Obama said on Tuesday that it is more vital than ever to revive the Israeli-Palestinian peace talks and assured US role to find a viable solution to the six-decade-old conflict in the region.
After the talks with King Abdullah II of Jordan ahead of a full week of intense negotiations, Obama has guaranteed that he will call for a two-state solution for the Israel-Palestine conflict.
Obama is keen to reconnect with the Arab world which is upset with his approach to the restive region. Ironic though is that his offer of talks has no new ideas for advancing the peace process.
Otherwise, the president is scheduled to deliver a policy speech on the Arab uprisings on Thursday. He will meet the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu later this week, and will address a pro-Israel lobbying group this weekend.
The president said Jordan's King Abdullah II has concurred with his view that many changes are taking place in the region and hence, it is vital that both Israelis and Palestinians find a way to get back to the table.”
Obama added that “despite the many changes,” Israel and the Palestine should begin negotiating a process whereby they can create two states living side by side in peace and security.
Jordan and Egypt, the two Arab states with peace treaties with Israel, besides the U.S. are the key players in the peace initiative. We will continue to partner (with Jordan) to try to encourage an equitable and just solution to a problem that has been nagging the region for many, many years, Obama said.
Many Israelis are, however, skeptical about the implications for the Jewish state after the unrest around its borders, and the reconciliation deal between Fatah-Hamas, has raised doubts about the peace prospects. This also comes at a time when the US emissary to the Middle East has resigned from office after two years of effort to achieve peace in the area.
In a White House reception marking the Jewish-American Heritage Month, Obama confirmed his support and commitment to Israel.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas urged the United Nations on Tuesday for international recognition of the Palestinian state. He wants the UN General Assembly to vote in September for an independent Palestine.
Meanwhile, as part of the unity deal between Fatah and Hamas, the elections are tentatively slated for July but the Palestine Authority on Tuesday said that it is delaying the local elections to late October, to make arrangements for voting in Gaza, which is controlled by Hamas.