Israel/Palestine visit: two-state solution only viable option
10 April 2018
Rising tensions were very much in evidence during a visit I made to Israel/Palestine as part of a parliamentary delegation just before Easter. Israel continues to build settlements in Palestinian Territories in contravention of international law, making the daily lives of Palestinians increasingly difficult and we heard numerous examples of human rights violations. On the Palestinian side, prospects for reconciliation between Fatah and Hamas have faded after a bomb attack on the Prime Minister of the Palestinian Authority during a recent visit to Gaza, blamed on Hamas by Fatah. Tensions have been further stoked by the US decision to switch its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem - a decision heavily criticised by the EU - as we have seen from the protests on the Gaza/Israeli border in which a number of Palestinians were shot by the Israeli military. During the visit, the S&D delegation also took time to visit a number of EU funded projects like the Am’ari Girls School (pictured above) in a refugee camp in Ramallah helping to improve access to education for children.
Looking to the future, it’s clear that the two-state solution envisaged by the Oslo Accords is under real pressure, but no better option is on the table that can offer a long term, peaceful future. You can read the statement made by myself and MEP colleagues from the Socialists and Democrats Group here.