French Diplomat: Paris Conference ‘Two-State Solution’ Declaration ‘Sends Subliminal Message to Trump’
JNS.org – Sunday’s Mideast peace conference in Paris concluded that the “two-state solution” is the only way forward to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and warned both sides against taking any independent action, reiterating the long-standing international position on the issue.
In their final communique, conference participants from some 70 countries said they “call on each side…to refrain from unilateral steps that prejudge the outcome of negotiations on final-status issues, including, inter alia, on Jerusalem, borders, security, refugees and which they will not recognize.”
While the statement did not explicitly criticize President-elect Donald Trump, a French diplomat said that “tortuous and complicated paragraph” was intended “to pass a subliminal message” to the incoming American administration, Reuters reported.
Ahead of the meeting, Trump’s advisers told French officials that the president-elect strongly objected to the conference being held just days before his Jan. 20 inauguration, Haaretz reported.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, whose government did not attend the conference, called the gathering a “useless” attempt by France and the Palestinians to “force terms on Israel that conflict with our national needs.”
Meanwhile, US Secretary of State John Kerry said the conference“moved the ball forward” on the peace process.
“It underscores this is not just one administration’s point of view, this is shared by the international community broadly,” Kerry said. This is expected to be the last international forum Kerry participates in before the end of his term this Friday.
Israeli officials have made it clear that they are looking forward to the “new era” of the Trump administration, who has harshly criticized efforts to impose solutions on the Jewish state. “This conference is among the last twitches of yesterday’s world. Tomorrow’s world will be different — and it is very near,” Netanyahu said days before the conference convened.
Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations Danny Danon echoed the prime minister’s message, saying that he plans to “work with the incoming US administration to undo the damage caused by the [recent United Nations] Security Council resolution [against Israeli settlements] and these other one-sided initiatives.”
The United Kingdom also cited the changing American administration in its explanation for why it participated in the conference only as an observer, sending junior diplomats to Paris and not signing the communique.