Germany calls for strong quartet message to support two-states
Germany, which will host a meeting of the Middle East diplomatic group known as quartet, on Wednesday called for that group to issue a "clear and unambiguous" message supporting a two-state solution when it meets next month in Munich, dpa reported.
The UN, the European Union, the United States and Russia, which form the quartet, will hold another round of talks on February 5 to push for achieving by September the creation of a Palestinian state living in peace next to Israel.
The two-state solution is part of the quartet's roadmap for peace in the Middle East.
German Ambassador Peter Wittig, whose country began in January a two-year term as a council member, said Germany welcomes the quartet and would expect that it will issue a "strong political signal" supporting peace in the Middle East.
"Active backing from the Arab States is necessary to create an atmosphere conducive to progress," Wittig said.
"We need to send a clear and unambiguous message that we stick to our shared vision of two states living side by side in peace and security," Wittig said. "We need to be clear about the parameters of such a solution and about our willingness to support its implementation as required."
Wittig urged the Palestinian Authority to continue its nation-building programme and a sustainable peace resting on a negotiated settlement with Israel and viable institutions for "the future state of Palestine."
"We congratulate the Palestinian National Authority on progress achieved so far in institution building, including on implementation of the Fyyad Plan," Wittig said, referring to PA Prime Minister Salam Fayyad's incremental nation-building plan that should be complete by August this year.
Wittig reiterated his government's opposition to Israeli settlements and for Israelis and Palestinians to engage in substantive direct talks to resolve difference over final issues, which include the final status of Jerusalem.
The Security Council debate on the Middle East allowed UN members to state publicly their governments' positions on ways to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. But the council was not expected to adopt any measures aimed at ending the conflict.