French foreign minister urges for Middle East peace talks

French Foreign Minister Fabius calls international community to resolve Israeli-Palestinian conflict

Photo by: AFP
Photo by: AFP

Updated Jul 28, 2015

French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius on Saturday called the international community to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict within two years, during a visit to Cairo.

"We need Israel's security to be totally assured, that is essential, but at the same time we need the rights of the Palestinians to be recognised because without justice there can be no peace," said Fabius.  

He also said continued illegal Israeli settlement building in the occupied West Bank damaged chances of a final deal.

"From this point of view, when settlement building continues, [the prospect of] a two-state solution recedes," he said.

In addition, Fabius said in a statement last year a day after British House of Commons voted to recognise Palestine that if negotiations between the Palestinians and Israel fail, Paris would not shirk its responsibilities but would recognise the Palestinian State.

The FM met with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el Sisi in Cairo and his Egyptian counterpart Sameh Shoukry as a part of his regional visit to negotiate the Middle East peace talks.

Palestinians are seeking statehood for the Israeli-occupied West Bank and the blockaded Gaza Strip, with East Jerusalem as the proposed capital.

The latest round of direct peace talks between Israeli and Palestinian negotiators collapsed in April 2014 when the Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’ Fatah faction declared a joint government with Gaza’s Hamas authorities in response to Israel’s continued illegal settlement building in the occupied territories of the West Bank.

However, the Palestinian unity government dissolved on June 17, 2015.

A few months later, in July and August 2014, Israel launched the 51-day “Operation Protective Edge” in Gaza Strip and killed more than 2,100 people, mostly women and children and injured another 11,000. On the Israeli side, 67 soldiers and six civilians were killed.

TRTWorld and agencies