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The Israeli-Palestinian peace process: the role of the Council of Europe

Doc. 14484: compendium of written amendments | Doc. 14484 | 24/01/2018 | Final version

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ADraft Resolution

1The Parliamentary Assembly recalls its Resolution 1940 (2013) on the situation in the Middle East, where it “reiterates its support for a two-State solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, based on the 1967 borders, which, in view of the new realities on the ground, could be accompanied by limited land swap, as has recently been accepted by the Arab countries”. It adds that Jerusalem could well become the capital of both the State of Israel and the future Palestinian State, as a result of direct negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians.
2The Assembly regrets the declaration of the President of the United States of America on 6 December 2017 that it was “time to officially recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel” and that preparations would start “to move the American embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem”. At the same time, the Assembly notes that in the same declaration, the US President stated that the United States was “not taking a position of any final status issues” and underlined that “those questions are up to the parties involved”, and that “the United States would support a two-State solution if agreed to by both sides”.
3The Assembly recalls the relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions and the necessity for all parties involved to abide by their legal obligations and responsibilities under international law and to refrain from any unilateral measures that undermine the prospects of the peace process, including the status of Jerusalem, which should be decided by common agreement between the Israelis and the Palestinians, taking into consideration the Hashemite historical custodianship over Christian and Islamic holy sites in Jerusalem.
4The international community as a whole expressed serious concerns about the consequences of this declaration on Jerusalem for the relationship between Israelis and Palestinians and the prospects for a solution to their conflict.
5The Parliamentary Assembly shares such concerns and regrets that the peace process has been discontinued. It no longer seems to be a priority for the United States, for Europe and for some Arab States. It feels however that the present context could provide an opportunity to re-launch the peace process. It is the responsibility of the international community, including the Council of Europe, to act decisively in order to create the proper conditions to attain this goal.

In the draft resolution, after paragraph 5, insert the following paragraph:

"The Assembly welcomes the fact that on 22 December 2017 the United Nations General Assembly backed a resolution put forward by Turkey and Yemen and approved by 128 States, with 35 abstaining and 9 others voting against, expressing "deep regret at recent decisions concerning the status of Jerusalem"."

6The role of the United States as a serious broker in the peace process was undoubtedly undermined by the declaration of its President on Jerusalem. Its future role should be based on a renewed attitude of neutrality in the peace process. In this context, Europe should play a major role in the sponsorship and resumption of the peace process.

In the draft resolution, replace paragraph 6 with the following paragraph:

"The role of the USA as a serious broker in the peace process was undoubtedly undermined by the declaration of its President on Jerusalem. Europe should increase its role in the peace process."

7The Assembly is aware of the fact that this is a complex issue and that the Council of Europe continues to take an interest in the progress of the peace process and could play a helpful role. The Parliamentary Assembly is unique, having both an Israeli observer delegation and a Palestinian partner for democracy delegation. It also has contacts with other parliaments in the area, such as those of Jordan, which also has partner for democracy status, Egypt and Lebanon.
8The Assembly regrets that the Palestinian reconciliation, announced so many times, has not yet produced concrete results, thus undermining the prospects of re-launching negotiations. It also regrets the ongoing building of Israeli settlements in the occupied territories, including East Jerusalem, thus undermining the feasibility of the two-State solution.

In the draft resolution, replace paragraph 8 with the following paragraph:

"The Assembly encourages the Palestinian reconciliation, which will produce concrete results with regard to the prospect of relaunching negotiations."

In the draft resolution, paragraph 8, after the first sentence, insert the following sentence: "The Assembly further regrets that the Palestinian leadership has continued to provide moral and financial support for terrorism through incitement and payments to the families of those imprisoned following convictions for terrorist acts."

In the draft resolution, after paragraph 8, insert the following paragraph:

"The Assembly strongly regrets the on-going building of Israeli settlements in the occupied territories, including East Jerusalem, thus undermining the feasibility of the two-State solution."

9The Assembly therefore reiterates its Resolution 1940 (2013), in particular, its support for two equally legitimate aspirations: Israel’s right to be recognised and live in security, and the Palestinians’ right to have an independent, viable and contiguous State, and:
9.1calls on the Israeli authorities to stop the building of new settlements and the extension of old ones, cease all home demolitions, forced evictions and confiscation of land in the occupied territories, including in East Jerusalem.
9.2calls on all Palestinian forces to conclude, without further delay and in a transparent manner, the reconciliation, already announced several times, between Fatah and Hamas, based on the Quartet principles, thus also enhancing the credibility of the Palestinian side in the negotiations with Israel.

24 January 2018

Tabled by Mr Boriss CILEVIČS, Mr Emanuelis ZINGERIS, Mr Georgii LOGVYNSKYI, Mr Valeriu GHILETCHI, Mr Boryslav BEREZA, Mr Kęstutis MASIULIS

Votes: 79 in favor 24 against 16 abstentions

In the draft resolution, after paragraph 9.2, insert the following paragraph:

"calls on the Palestinian leadership to cease all activities that support or encourage terrorism against Israel, including incitement to terrorism through official and unofficial channels and the payment of stipends to the families of terrorists."

9.3resolves to continue to promote dialogue and confidence building between representatives of the Knesset and the Palestinian National Council, in particular in the framework of the Sub-Committee on the Middle East and the Arab World, and to make available to both representative bodies its own experience in the field of human rights, democracy and the rule of law. For this purpose it could consider using the tripartite forum referred to in Resolutions 1420 (2005) and 1550 (2007), allowing parliamentarians from those two delegations and the Parliamentary Assembly to sit together on an equal footing and engage in meaningful dialogue leading to concrete proposals. The Assembly should therefore find ways of concretely supporting the re-launching of the peace process including through contacts with the directly concerned parties and other stakeholders of the process, mainly in the fields of competence of the Council of Europe.