Ahmed Aboul Gheit, Secretary General of the Arab League, on Tuesday received the European Union (EU) special representative for the Middle East Peace Process, Susanna Terstal, to exchange views on the region’s peace course in the coming period.
The meeting took place at the Arab League’s headquarters, and saw discussions on the future of the peace process in light of the new US administration.
Aboul Gheit expressed his appreciation for the principled EU position on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. He highlighted the erosion of the two-state solution, due to Israel’s increasing settlement activities in the occupied territories in both the West Bank and East Jerusalem.
He stressed the importance of the EU activities in terms of its humanitarian work and providing economic support to the Palestinians, including refugees in the occupied territories and neighbouring countries.
According to a statement issued by the Arab League General Secretariat, Aboul Gheit reiterated during the meeting his aspiration for a more effective EU role in reviving the peace process between the Palestinians and Israelis.
He added that the Middle East peace process should be put back on the right track, based on known international determinants, international legitimacy decisions, and relevant UN Security Council resolutions.
Aboul Gheit listened to a presentation by Terstal on European policies towards the Palestinian issue, and plans for future action. He stressed the importance of placing this pivotal issue at the top of the international community’s agenda in the coming period.
At the same time, he highlighted the need to move in coordination with other countries across the Arab world and in the EU, aimed at reviving the two-state solution. This will form a basis for a negotiation process with a clear timeline that will also aim to resolve the conflict rather than just managing it.