The Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) has welcomed the recent declarations of Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi, saying that it comes from Egypt’s dedication to the Palestinian people’s rights.
Al-Sisi urged the Palestinians to unite their different factions in order to achieve reconciliation. He said Egypt is prepared to take on this role and urged the Israelis to not waste an opportunity for peace.
The PLO appreciates Al-Sisi’s initiative to achieve Palestinian unity, the organisation’s spokesperson Osama Qawasmi said Tuesday in a press statement. The Palestinian case is the main keystone to achieving peace in the Middle East, he added.
Hamas also welcomed Egypt’s declarations, saying that it is ready for any initiative that could unite the Palestinian factions.
Al-Sisi also said that solving the Palestinian-Israeli conflict will make the peace treaty between Egypt and Israel “warmer”.
The Palestinian ambassador to Egypt Gamal El-Shoubaky praised Al-Sisi’s declarations in a statement, saying that Egypt and Palestine have crystallised one strategic vision to end the occupation and launch the Palestinian state.
Palestinian government spokesperson Youssef Al Mahmoud said that Al-Sisi’s declarations expressed the historic role of Egypt toward the Palestinian case. He also affirmed Palestine’s readiness to participate in any initiative to solve the conflict, including the French initiative to hold an international conference.
Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Israel is ready to cooperate with Egypt and other Arab countries to achieve peace.
“Israel is prepared to cooperate with Egypt and with other Arab states to advance the diplomatic process and stability in the region,” Netanyahu said.
French president François Hollande said on Tuesday that the international peace conference that was scheduled to be held in May will be postponed until later this summer.
Hollande added that US secretary of state John Kerry will not be available on 30 May, hence the delay.
“This initiative is necessary because if nothing happens, if there is no strong French initiative, then colonisation, attacks, terrorist attacks, and several conflicts are going to continue,” he said.
Netanyahu previously told French foreign minister Jean-Marc Ayrault that Israel still opposes holding an international conference on the Palestinian-Israeli peace process.
“I told him the only way to advance genuine peace between us and the Palestinians is through direct negotiations between us and them, without preconditions,” said Netanyahu.
Earlier this year, the French government began efforts to host an international conference planned for this summer to restore peace talks between Palestinian and Israeli authorities. It also vowed to recognise a Palestinian state if peace talks failed.
Peace talks stalled following the collapse of a US-led initiative two years ago.