France Urges Renewed Mideast Peace Talks

France Urges Renewed Mideast Peace TalksFrance Urges Renewed Mideast Peace Talks

French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius on Saturday urged the resumption of Middle East peace talks, while warning that continued Israeli settlement building in the occupied West Bank damaged chances of a final deal.

“What’s important is that negotiations restart,” Fabius told reporters during a visit to Cairo.

“We need the rights of the Palestinians to be recognized because without justice there can be no peace. From this point of view, when settlement building continues, (the prospect of) a two-state solution recedes.”

Peace talks between Israel and Palestine have been comatose since a major US push for a final deal ended in failure in April 2014, AFP reported.

Palestinians blame the collapse of talks on Israel’s settlement building and the government’s refusal to release veteran prisoners.

The United Nations has repeatedly called on Israel to halt the construction of Jewish settlements on Palestinian land, which it has branded as illegal and a move to erase the prospect of a Palestinian state.