Friday, July 27, 2007

Start with the settlements

Stephanie Khouri is London based these days and sometimes comes along to meetings. Rafi Dajani sent this saying, "A Daily Star (Lebanon) opinion by former Palestinian Liberation Organization legal advisor Stephanie Koury argues that initiatives that do not address Israeli settlements, the separation barrier and Hamas' isolation are doomed to fail". Which is true as far as it goes.

FOR A START, TACKLE THOSE ISRAELI SETTLEMENT AND THAT WALL By Stephanie Koury, The Daily Star, Opinion (Lebanon) July 27, 2007

Recently, US President George W. Bush announced plans to provide direct aid to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' government and to convene an international conference aimed at securing Israeli-Palestinian peace and a two state solution. His initiative followed closely on the heels of the Quartet's appointment of former British Prime Minister Tony Blair as its Middle East envoy whose mandate is to oversee Palestinian reform.
While these recent initiatives suggest seriousness on the Quartet's part, its efforts will once again amount to naught unless it immediately tackles Israel's construction of settlements and the separation wall in the occupied West Bank, and revises its approach to isolating Hamas. To date, the Quartet has been reluctant to do either.

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