Dr. Saeb Erekat, the Secretary General of the PLO, stressed that the realization of the two-state solution requires an explicit and clear recognition of the 1967 borders, the immediate commencement and implementation of signed agreements, and a commitment to international law, the UN Security Council, the General Assembly, and the Arab Peace Initiative.
Erekat’s remarks came in response to the statements of the occupying authority’s war minister, Avigdor Lieberman, “to approve the principle of a two-state solution, and to negotiate with the Arab countries on the Arab initiative.”
Erekat described these statements as new public relations strategies promoted by the occupying government to shield Israel from having to adhere to the will of the international community and distract from its continued settler-colonial policies and rejectionist positions.
“We are used to Netanyahu and his government’s inconsistencies and contradictions between words and actions,” Erekat said. “Peace must translate words into action by, first and foremost by ending the manufacture of facts on the ground, the cessation of settlement, ending the Judaization of Jerusalem, stopping extrajudicial executions, halting all demolition of homes, releasing the detention of bodies, lifting the siege, recognition of the 1967 borders, and to respect and implement the signed agreements.”
Erekat also warned against taking the Arab initiative out of context and stressed that the Palestinian position toward the Arab initiative is defined and clear. Arab States declared their position during the Arab ministerial meeting on 28 May 2016 in Cairo, stressing that upon completion of Israel’s withdrawal from occupied Arab and Palestinian territory and the rise of the independent Palestinian state, Arab and Islamic States would normalize relations with Israel, not vice versa, which Israel seeks.
Erekat noted that the Israeli statements are in advance of the 49th anniversary of Israel’s belligerent military occupation of Palestine and stressed that the need to finally put an end to the occupation is critical, and must come with the final the embodiment of the state of Palestine on the 1967 borders, with Jerusalem as its capital.
“This is a critical juncture in our history and we hope that the international community commits to ending the injustices committed against Palestine by recognizing the importance of such pursuits as the Arab Peace Initiative and upcoming French conference within a defined framework and timeline, guided by international law and UN principles,”Erekat concluded.