Four Principles for Israel-Palestinian Progress

(March 20, 2001)


In a meeting with the Council of Europe's subcommittee for Middle East affairs, Israeli Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Shimon Peres stated that a change in the situation prevailing between Israel and the Palestinians must be based upon the following four principles:

  1. Ending the violence.

  2. A change in rhetoric - Using the language of peace rather than confrontation which leads only to violence. Peres stated: "The two peoples are extremely angry at one another, and have lost their capacity for dialogue."

  3. A return to the negotiating table, in order to achieve a settlement.

  4. Easing living conditions in the territories.

The above principles, according to FM Peres, must be applied in a simultaneous, unconditional, and uniform manner.

With regard to the Arab initiative to dispatch UN observers to the territories, Mr. Peres stated that if such a decision is made, it would constitute a unilateral action against Israel.

Minister Peres asked whether, for example, the Palestinians are inviting these observers in order to see who sends the gun squads that carry out the drive-by shootings, or to expose the weapons caches used by those who carry out the terrorist attacks.

Mr. Peres also stated that the Chairman of the Palestinian Authority must publicly affirm the Palestinian commitment to the Oslo accords, which establish that differences between the two parties will be resolved through dialogue rather than violence. He must also impose discipline on his personnel, and take action against those members of Force 17 who participate in terrorist attacks.


Source: Israeli Foreign Ministry