Two-state solution gives hope to Palestinians, security to Israelis: Egypt's President Sisi

Ahram Online , Tuesday 17 May 2016

While inaugurating $2.7 bln worth of electricity projects, Egypt's Sisi spoke about the Palestine-Israeli conflict

Egypt's President Abdel Fatah El-Sisi (Photo: Al Ahram)

During a speech inaugurating eight power stations on Tuesday, President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi also addressed Israeli’s leaders and Egypt’s Palestinian neighbours, stressing that peace, prosperity and cooperation will only take place if both parties are able to reach a two-state solution.

"I call on our Palestinian brothers to unite their various factions so as to be able to reach a real reconciliation," El-Sisi said.

Speaking to the Israeli leadership, El-Sisi recalled Egypt's experience before and after the Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty and highlighted that 40 years ago no one at that period of time thought that such a positive "jump in relations" could be established.

"Some people may see this [Egypt-Israel peace treaty] as cold peace, yet I believe that much warmer peace will be achieved only if we are able to provide guarantees to the Palestinian people," El-Sisi said.

El-Sisi continued to say that this would be of benefit to both sides.

"The solution to this issue will give hope to Palestinians and security to the Israelis," El-Sisi said.

El-Sisi said that efforts by Arab countries through different initiatives are currently ongoing.

He then highlighted that recently leaders of the Arab initiative have come up with a new framework of cooperation between the involved countries and Israel that is contingent on a solution for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict being found.

An extraordinary Arab League summit is expected to sit ahead of the French-sponsored initiative scheduled to take place in Paris this summer.

The Arab league summit -- which will be at the level of Arab foreign ministers and headed by Bahrain -- will discuss the Arab stance that will be presented at the Paris summit.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is expected to attend the league summit that will take place on 28 May. The Egyptian president has called on the Israeli leadership to broadcast his speech more than once.

El-Sisi’s speech comes following a meeting he held with Abbas last week. During the two leaders’ meeting, they discussed resurrecting the peace process to restore hope for Palestinians.

El-Sisi also spoke about initiatives from the Arabs, the French and the Americans, who have each worked separately but at the same pace to achieve peace.

However, on Sunday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu renewed his rejection of a French-sponsored initiative to kick start peace efforts which have been halted since April 2014 before the Gaza conflict later that year. 

Netanyahu attacked the French peace initiative, telling his cabinet ministers that it gave the Palestinians an opportunity to evade direct negotiations

Yet Netanyahu also added that Israel’s historical experience is that direct talks do lead to peace, such as what occurred with Egypt and Jordan.


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