French envoy on Israeli, Palestinian peace push

2016-03-15 21:11
French special envoy Pierre Vimont in the West Bank city of Ramallah. (Nasser Nasser, AP)

French special envoy Pierre Vimont in the West Bank city of Ramallah. (Nasser Nasser, AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Ramallah - Palestinian leaders expressed hope for a new French push for peace efforts in talks with a Paris envoy on Tuesday, after he faced scepticism in meetings with Israel.

Pierre Vimont, France's point man on efforts to hold an international peace conference by the summer, held talks Tuesday in Ramallah with Palestinian President Mahmud Abbas, Foreign Minister Riad al-Malki and top negotiator Saeb Erekat.

"The French ideas are timely, the French ideas are realistic and the French ideas are the only thing in town, and those who care about peace between Palestinians and Israelis must fully support the French ideas," Erekat said.

France launched the effort earlier this year to host an international conference to revive peace talks. It initially vowed to recognise a Palestinian state if talks failed, but French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault later said the recognition would not be automatic.

Vimont on Monday met Israeli foreign ministry director general Dore Gold, a close ally of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Foreign ministry spokesperson Emmanuel Nahshon said Israel wants direct negotiations with the Palestinians and sought to "understand the initiative's logic" during talks with Vimont.

"The Israeli side emphasised the importance of direct, bilateral negotiations, with no prior conditions between the parties," he said.

The French initiative comes amid a wave of violence since October that has killed 193 Palestinians and 28 Israelis.

Most of the Palestinians were killed while carrying out knife, gun or car-ramming attacks, according to the Israeli authorities.

Others were shot dead during protests and clashes, while some were killed in Israeli air raids in the Gaza Strip.

Read more on:    palestine  |  france  |  israel

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.