The Negev Summit (Summit) taking place on 27 and 28 March – hosted by Israel's Foreign Minister Yair Lapid - could be the catalyst for promoting the beginning of direct negotiations - without preconditions - between Israel, Jordan, the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) and Egypt - on the allocation of sovereignty in Judea and Samaria (West Bank) and Gaza.
Summit attendees will include:
- US Secretary for State Antony Blinken
- Minister of Foreign Affairs of the United Arab Emirates H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed
- Minister of Foreign Affairs of Bahrain Dr. Abdullatif bin Rashid Al Zayani,
- Minister of Foreign Affairs of Morocco Nasser Bourita, and
- Minister of Foreign Affairs of Egypt Sameh Shoukry.
Jordan's Foreign Minister Ayman al-Safdi will be meeting PLO leader Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah during the Summit. However - according to Israel's Channel N12 - al-Safdi may join the Summit before the event is concluded.
On 18 March Principal Deputy Spokesperson in the US State Department – Jalina Porter – had announced Blinken's visit to the Middle East without mentioning the Summit.
Porter articulated the Biden Administration's views on creating a second Palestinian Arab State in former Palestine – in addition to Jordan:
...the Biden-Harris administration believes that there should be a viable and democratic Palestinian state living in peace alongside a Jewish and democratic state. We believe that a negotiated two-state solution is the best way to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and the administration has also made clear on numerous occasions that Israelis and Palestinians alike equally deserve to live in security, prosperity, and freedom.
Porter's choice of the term "Israeli-Palestinian conflict" was unfortunate. A more appropriate term would have been the "Arab-Jewish conflict" which has been raging unresolved in former Palestine for more than 100 years – long before the terms "Israelis"and "Palestinians" were created in 1948 and 1964 respectively.
In this long-running conflict every word counts.
United Nations General Assembly Resolution 181 - passed in 1947 - had called for Western Palestine - today called Israel, Judea and Samaria (West Bank) and Gaza – to be partitioned into one Arab State and one Jewish State. This area comprised 22% of the territory in the 1922 League of Nations Mandate for Palestine.
Jerusalem was to become a separate entity to be governed by a special international regime.
Discuss in our Forums
See what other readers are saying about this article!
Click here to read & post comments.
2 posts so far.