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EU, Arab states launch effort to reinvigorate Israeli-Palestinian peace

"If we want a two-state solution, everybody has to support it in practical terms," says top E.U. diplomat Josep Borrell.

The "Peace Day Effort" at the U.N., Sept. 18, 2023. Source: X
The "Peace Day Effort" at the U.N., Sept. 18, 2023. Source: X

Over 40 countries and delegations joined a high-level meeting at the United Nations on Monday aimed at injecting new life into moribund Israeli-Palestinian peace talks.

The meeting, dubbed a “Peace Day Effort,” was the initiative of the European Union, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Egypt and the Arab League.

“The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is deteriorating dangerously. With our initiative we want to support the path towards a comprehensive peace between Israel and Palestine,” tweeted High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell.

Speaking to reporters after the meeting, he said that 30 years after the signing of the Oslo Accords, “we cannot say we are closer to peace between Israel and Palestine. On the contrary, the number of settlers has increased a lot.”

Arguing for a “stronger effort,” Borrell said that “if we want a two-state solution, everybody has to support it in practical terms.”

He said the participants had agreed to establish three senior-level working groups: 1. regional, political and security 2. economic, trade and environment, and 3. humanitarian and cultural.

The groups will start working in one month in Brussels, he said.

“If everybody was really engaged in supporting this two-state solution, the solution would be there already,” he said. “We have to pass from words to deeds.”

The incident comes as Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas criticized the E.U. on Monday, calling them “animals” for not following through on promises to help the P.A. hold elections in 2021, the Times of Israel reported, citing two sources who were present.

Abbas has been persona non grata on the world stage after making a speech on Aug. 24 in which he said  Hitler “fought the Jews” due to their “dealing with usury and money.” 

“They say that Hitler killed the Jews for being Jews and that Europe hated the Jews because they were Jews. Not true,” Abbas said. He stated that Europeans fought Jews “because of their social role and not their religion.”

The Palestinian leader also repeated the so-called “Khazar Myth” that he has peddled often over the years, stating that Ashkenazi Jews descend from Turkish Khazars who converted, rather than biblical Israelites.

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