The Ministers of Foreign Affairs of Egypt, France, Germany and Jordan met in Paris today to continue their efforts to contribute to advancing the Middle East Peace Process towards a just, comprehensive and lasting peace. They were joined by the United Nations Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process and the European Union Special Representative for the Middle East Peace Process.
The Ministers declared:
1. Following our meetings in Munich on February 15, 2020, in Amman on September 24, 2020 and in Cairo on January 11, 2021, we welcome the opportunity to discuss further potential steps to contribute to the restoration of a conducive environment for a resumed dialogue between the two parties, with a view to advancing the Middle East Peace Process.
2. We concur that progressive and mutual confidence-building measures based on a step-by-step approach will help restore a dialogue between the parties, paving the way for a genuine peace process that should resume as soon as possible.
3. We emphasise that the resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict on the basis of the two-state solution is indispensable for comprehensive peace in the region. We remain firmly committed to enabling and supporting all efforts aimed at achieving a just and lasting peace in the Middle East based on international law, relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions and agreed parameters. We emphasise the importance of the peace treaties between Arab states and Israel, including the recently signed agreements, contributing to the resolution of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict on the basis of the two-state solution so that comprehensive and lasting peace is achieved. Only a negotiated two-state solution, ensuring an independent and viable Palestinian state based on June 4, 1967 lines and UN Security Council resolutions, living side by side a secure and recognized Israel, can fulfil the aspirations of both the Israelis and the Palestinians, hence providing just and sustainable peace.
4. We deem it necessary to preserve the two-state solution, as it serves the interest of both the Palestinians and the Israelis in the quest for the creation of two peaceful and democratic states living side by side and contributing to regional peace and stability within a favourable environment.
5. We call on the parties to refrain from any unilateral measures undermining the future of a just and lasting solution to the conflict. We stress the need to cease all settlement activities, including in East Jerusalem, in accordance with relevant UN Security Council resolutions. We concur that settlement policy through building and expansion of settlements as well as confiscation of Palestinian structures and properties are a violation of international law and undermine the viability of the two-state solution. We recall the importance of upholding the historic and legal status quo of the Holy sites in Jerusalem. In this regard, we recall the importance of the historic Hashemite custodianship of Jerusalem’s Holy sites.
6. We welcome the parties’ efforts to cooperate in the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic. We encourage both sides to cooperate more closely in providing a holistic response to the public health and economic crisis induced by the pandemic, including by reinvigorating the bilateral economic mechanisms to foster coordination for the benefit of the two peoples.
7. We welcome the progress made in preparing for Palestinian elections and call on all parties to honor the electoral process, commit to democratic principles and refrain from any acts of violence. We call on Israel to facilitate the preparation and conduct of the voting process as well as free access to polling sites, including in East Jerusalem.
8. We value the indispensable role of UNRWA in providing humanitarian assistance and essential services to the Palestinian refugees, in accordance with its UN mandate. We call upon the international community to honour its commitments to UNRWA, thereby helping the Agency overcome the present dire financial deficit.
9. We express our willingness to work closely and actively with Middle East Quartet and the United States as well as with all other actors committed to achieving a just and lasting peace in the region.