With Israelis and Palestinians, to restart the peace process

With Israelis and Palestinians, to restart the peace process

I write after we spent the first part of this week working mostly on the conflict between Israel and Palestine. Last Monday, with the Foreign Ministers of the Union, we welcomed Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to Brussels – after hosting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu last December. We confirmed to Abbas our commitment to a solution of the conflict based on two States: the State of Israel, with West Jerusalem as its capital, and the State of Palestine, with East Jerusalem as its capital. We agreed on the need to relaunch the peace process in a multilateral format – with a central role for the European Union, but always together with the Quartet, our American friends and the Arab countries. At the end of January we will all meet here in Brussels – the Israelis and the Palestinians, the Quartet Members, Norway and other important partners – for an extraordinary meeting of the group of international donors for Palestine, the “Ad Hoc Liaison Committee.” Here is my press conference with Abbas, and here is what I told journalists before and after the Foreign Affairs Council. Yesterday I met with Yuli-Yoel Edelstein, the Speaker of the Israeli Parliament – a sign of our friendship and constant cooperation with Israel, not just to relaunch the peace process but also in our bilateral relations, and to tackle together the issue of anti-Semitism in our region. At the end of this week we will mark the International Holocaust Remembrance Day, and today at the European Commission we listened to the stories of three Holocaust survivors – Elżbieta Ficowska, Jehoshua Shochot ed Elisabeth Drillich....