Posts Tagged ‘barghouti’

Meeting with Dr Mustafa Barghouti in Ramallah

03/11/2015 Leave a comment

IMG_1027Earlier today I visited Dr Mustafa Barghouti, who is the General Secretary of the Palestinian National Initiative (al Mudabara) and a member of the Central Council of the PLO. His personal commitment to peace and non-violence can neither be questioned by his friends, nor his opponents. On October 25th he was attacked with a knife by an unknown assailant near his house in Ramallah. This attack against a political leader and public figure was universally condemned by all, including the United Nations. Such incidents serve only those who are interested in harming the Palestinian social and political fabric. The authorities should promptly investigate this act of terror and bring the perpetrators to justice.

Although we spoke after the incident, I went to visit Dr Barghouti today to discuss the political situation, his safety and the investigation into his attack. I was encouraged to see him in good spirits and as actively engaged as ever. We discussed that what is needed is a political perspective, a horizon for young people, in order to bring down the level of violence and incitement, as well as to point the way forward towards an end of the occupation and a two-state solution.

There is no need to convince Israelis and Palestinians that peace is better than violence, or that the two-state solution is the only just and lasting solution to the conflict. Most recently the UN Secretary-General addressed the Israeli and Palestinian people and visited the region with a clear goal: to support collective efforts to stop the violence, reduce tensions and re-establish a political horizon that can lead to lasting peace. He saw firsthand how the upsurge in violence has touched everyone: Israelis and Palestinians, men and women, young and old.  

The challenge today is how to bridge the widening gap between the two-state vision and the everyday realities for Palestinians. Ultimately, the parties will need to come back to the table to negotiate. We in the international community however need to help them create the conditions on the ground, in the region and internationally to make such negotiations meaningful. 

First, we must help restore a level of trust and encourage bold and significant measures on the ground that will tangibly improve the lives Palestinians and move us closer to two-states: Israel and Palestine, living in peace and security. 

Second, we need to engage the moderate regional Arab partners, who stand to benefit from peace and security as well. 

Third, we need to establish the appropriate international infrastructure, through the United Nations and the Middle East Quartet, that can support and encourage negotiations and a comprehensive and just resolution to the conflict.