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Paris Confab Endorses Two-State Palestine

US Secretary of State John Kerry (L) speaks with European Union Foreign Policy Chief Federica Mogherini. US Secretary of State John Kerry (L) speaks with European Union Foreign Policy Chief Federica Mogherini.

Sending a forceful message to Israel’s prime minister and the incoming US administration of Donald Trump, dozens of countries called on Israel and the Palestinians to revive work toward achieving the long-elusive peace.

The closing declaration at a Mideast peace conference in Paris urged both sides to “officially restate their commitment to the two-state solution” and disassociate from voices that reject this.

It also warned them against taking one-sided actions that could hurt talks, an apparent reference to Israeli settlement building, AP reported.

While the Palestinians welcomed the declaration, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called the conference “rigged”.

Many members of Netanyahu’s coalition want to abandon the two-state solution and expand settlements, and some have even called for annexing parts of the West Bank.

Trump’s campaign platform made no mention of Palestinian independence.

Secretary of State John Kerry, who has been increasingly critical of Netanyahu, represented the US at talks and defended the effort.

He rejected Israeli criticism of the conference, saying the concept of a two-state solution to the conflict is “threatened” and must be reinforced if it is ever to happen.

The communique, he said, endorses that without imposing a resolution.

 

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