Israel and Palestine: MEPs call for a European peace initiative

(Credit: Unsplash)

This article is brought to you in association with the European Parliament.

The EU should set up an international conference to bring the two-state solution back on track in order to restore political prospects for long-lasting peace.

In a resolution adopted on Wednesday, the European Parliament called for an end to the protracted Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the occupation of Palestinian territories through the resumption of genuine peace talks.

Reiterating their unwavering support for a negotiated two-state solution on the basis of the 1967 lines with two sovereign, democratic states and with Jerusalem as the capital of both states, MEPs urge the international community to support Israel and Palestine in negotiations that would lead to a final status agreement and mutual recognition.

End settler violence and indiscriminate attacks by Palestinian armed groups

MEPs, recall that settlements are illegal under international law and call for their immediate end. They stress that the recent decisions to establish new settlements further undermine prospects for a viable two-state solution.

Parliament strongly condemns continued terrorism against Israel and fully recognises Israel’s legitimate security concerns and its right to fight against acts of violence and to protect its civilian population.

All acts of violence, including the disproportionate use of force in military operations by the Israeli Defence Forces, terrorist attacks against innocent civilians and targeting civilian infrastructures, must end immediately, MEPs insist. They point to mounting settler violence and the indiscriminate attacks carried out by Palestinian organisations on the EU terror list,including Hamas, the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.

Presidential and legislative elections should be held in Palestine

MEPs call for the long-overdue presidential and legislative elections to be held in Palestine, that last time took place in 2005 and 2006 respectively, and urge Israel to allow these elections to take place in East Jerusalem. They insist that the European Union and the European Parliament must be able to observe these elections, upon invitation.

Finally, recognising UNRWA’s role in providing Palestinian refugees with vital services, MEPs reiterate the importance of education in building prospects for a two-state solution. They stress that all schoolbooks and school materials supported by European Union funds must be in line with UNESCO standards of peace and tolerance and that EU funding will have to be suspended if there is clear and substantiated evidence of misuse.

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