U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken stressed the importance of the two-state solution in a phone call on Monday with his Israeli counterpart, Gabi Ashkenazi.

Blinken emphasized U.S. President Joe Biden’s belief that “the two-state solution is the best way to ensure Israel’s future as a Jewish and democratic state living in peace alongside a viable and democratic Palestinian state,” said the U.S. State Department.

The Biden administration has promised to improve relations with the Palestinians, including reopening the PLO’s mission in Washington and restoring aid that was cut off by the Trump administration.

The call also comes amid a push by the Biden administration to return to the Iranian nuclear deal, which America withdrew from in May 2018.

While the readout of the call between Ashkenazi and Blinken did not specifically mention Iran, it did note that the two discussed “regional security challenges and the importance of continued cooperation in addressing these issues.”

Earlier on Monday, Blinken spoke to the U.N.-backed Conference on Disarmament, when he again reiterated that America would rejoin the deal with Tehran if it comes back into “strict compliance” with the pact. However, Iran has called for economic sanctions imposed under former President Donald Trump to be lifted before such dialogue were to begin.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has said going back to the original agreement would pave the way for Iran to acquire a nuclear weapon.


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