Partners for Progressive Israel is an independent non-profit American organization, affiliated through the World Zionist Organization with a loose coalition of groups around the world who together constitute the World Union of Meretz. The followed is edited from WUM’s latest newsletter, which includes greetings for the New Year:
|With Pres. Abbas (center) in Ramallah––left to right: MKs Ilan Gilon, Michal Rosin & Nitzan Horowitz, Mahmoud Abbas and MKs Zehava Gal-on, Issawi Freij & Tamar Zandberg, plus diplomatic adviser Ilan Baruch. [PA photo]|
It has been an important month for our activities both in Israel and abroad. First of all, it is 20 years since the first Oslo Accord was signed between Yitzhak Rabin and Yasser Arafat. The Oslo Process represents the first time Israelis and Palestinians sat at the same table, recognized each other’s right to exist and live in peace and security and instilled the hope for a peaceful future in the region. Oslo was a difficult process that required tireless discussions, difficult decisions and many compromises. Yet Israelis and Palestinians have no alternative.
Meretz Members of Knesset visited Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah (Aug. 22) and discussed with him the possibility of a peace agreement. Abbas made a series of important statements, including:
Seventy percent of Palestinians support peace with Israel. If we are offered a fair deal — we will sign a peace agreement that ends the conflict and Palestinian demands of Israel. People say that after signing a peace agreement we will still demand Haifa, Acre and Safed. That is not true. Signing the agreement will signal the end of the conflict.
Abbas’ statement made it clear that he is a partner for peace. Also this August, Meretz Chairwoman Zehava Galon, together with Secretary General Dror Morag and political advisor Ilan Baruch, visited Prince Hassan of Jordan, who reiterated his support for a two-state solution. At Meretz we believe that this is the ripe moment for peace and that we must do everything in our power to support a peace agreement! THERE IS NO ALTERNATIVE TO A TWO STATE SOLUTION BASED ON THE 1967 LINES. (To learn more about Meretz’s visit to Abbas and his stated views, read this report by Barak Ravid in Haaretz.)