News24

Jordan's king calls for urgency in Mideast

2012-04-18 19:18

Brussels - Jordan's King Abdullah II called for "a quantum leap forward" on Wednesday in efforts to strike an Israel-Palestinian peace deal, warning time was fast running out.

"We cannot afford one more generation in waiting for a Palestinian state," the Jordanian monarch said in a vibrant speech to the European parliament that drew repeated rounds of applause.

"There is no time to wait," he said. "The Arab Spring is rooted in a profound call for human respect. No affront is felt more deeply than the Israeli occupation."

"The longer Palestinian suffering endures, the longer settlement-building continues, the greater the frustrations, dangers and unknowns."

King Abdullah said that if talks on a two-state solution collapsed, Israel would be "further than ever from real security".

"It would take decades, even generations for peace to regain the initiative," he said.

The king said the decade-old Arab Peace Initiative remained the only blueprint, with two states living side by side on the 1967 borders, East Jerusalem as capital of a "sovereign, viable and independent" Palestine, and "collective peace and security guarantees" for Israel.

Amman earlier this year coaxed Israeli and Palestinian negotiators to return to talks after the collapse of direct negotiations in 2010.

Describing the renewed contacts as "baby steps", King Abdullah said "now the process requires a quantum leap forward".

Comments
  • Fred - 2012-04-18 19:45

    Abdullah, you'd be best advised to turn your attention to the last two terrorist regimes next door to you, Syria and Iran, who are the real "occupiers" of illegitimate power, and the real abusers, of their populations and the Palestinians. Syrians are being butchered and Syria destroyed. And this is all you have to offer?

  • Larry - 2012-04-18 21:04

    What guts Lesego. The Jordanians were the original oocupiers of the West bank between 1948 and 1967 without any complaint from so-called Palestinians. When they ganged up with Egypt, Lebanon and Syria to attack Israel in 1967 they were made to turn tail and flee back to the East Bank of the Jordan River. Israel conquered the West Bank and will continue to occupy it (and the Golan), and build settlements until the Arab world led by the Palestinians themselves accept Israels terms for peace. These terms are that East Jerusalem is annexed by Israel and forms part of Israels sovereign state, Jewish settlement blocs will remain in place, any future Palestinian state will be demilitarised and Israel will have de facto control over its border with Jordan, and full recognition of Israel and its Jewish character will be declared. There is no negotiation. Israel won the war not of its making and Israel will set and enforce the terms of peace. King Abdullah can run back to his mommy and tell on.

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