On Sunday, An international peace summit opened in Paris, France. The summit is designed to create a solution to the Israeli/Palestinian conflict. The summit is expected to recommend that both sides work towards a two-state solution.
The summit is being attended by 70 different countries. Palestinian and Israeli representatives were not invited to the summit. The incoming White House administration also was not present.
Notably, the United Kingdom also decided not to attend. It is believed that this is because they wish to develop a closer relationship with the incoming Trump administration.
Both sides of the conflict had different reactions to the summit. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas welcomed the conference while Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu dismissed it as “rigged.”
Fears About The Summit
Israel has expressed its concern that this summit might result in another anti-Israel resolution like the one passed earlier. This resolution created much strife between the United States and Israel.
Israeli sources have stated that Secretary of State John Kerry contacted Netanyahu to assure him that the U.S. would block any further attempts to cause harm to Israel. They would vote to block any drafting of a recommendation to turn the result of the summit into another U.N. resolution that would damage the Jewish state.
Understandably so, Netanyahu was skeptical. He said that the Obama administration had already caused enough harm by abstaining from the vote that allowed the anti-settlement resolution to pass.
Another issue is the fact that President-elect Donald Trump has planned to move the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. This would be a gesture that would acknowledge that Jerusalem is the rightful capital of Israel.
Mahmoud Abbas has strongly condemned this. He wrote to Trump to tell him that this move would harm the chances of achieving peace between both parties.
Both Israelis and Palestinians have supported a two-state solution. A poll conducted last year showed that 51% of Palestinians and 59% of Israelis want a two-state solution.
But mistrust still remains amidst the constant instances of violence. Recently, a truck driven by a Palestinian rammed into four IDF soldiers in Jerusalem in a terrorist attack. Israel believes that the Palestinians still do not want peace.
Over the past year, 40 Israelis have been killed in terrorist attacks. 230 Palestinians have been killed by the IDF in response.
The summit is expected to release their conclusion in the next few days.
Source: BBC News