UN envoy says international intervention needed in Israeli-Palestinian conflict

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UNITED NATIONS: The UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Robert Serry on Thursday told the Security Council that concrete international intervention is needed to solve Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

"I must in all frankness report low confidence and trust of the parties in each other and in international efforts to help them overcome their differences," said Serry. "The parties are unlikely to overcome the deficit of trust without a credible and effective international intervention in the peace process."

The UN senior official also remarked that the Middle East region has endured dramatic political changes in recent times and a negotiated solution would help stabilize the area.

Serry was referring to the popular uprisings that have already ousted Presidents Hosni Mubarak of Egypt and Zine El Abidine Ben Ali of Tunisia. In addition, other countries in the region such as Yemen, Libya, Bahrain and Algeria have also witnessed similar demonstrations.

However, the Israel-Palestine talks have been stalled since Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu refused to extend a moratorium on settlement building in occupied Palestinian territory.

In response, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas broke off direct talks in September 2010. The resuming of settlement construction in Gaza and East Jerusalem was labeled as a violation of international law by the international community.

"The longer the impasse in talks persists, the greater our concern that tensions on the ground will unravel modest achievements and stand in the way of a negotiated solution," added Serry.

The Special Coordinator noted that the diplomatic Quartet of the UN, European Union, Russia and United States, which seeks a two-State solution of Israel and Palestine living side by side in peace and security within recognized borders, has set this September as a deadline for achieving this goal.

Serry urged unity among the Palestinians, who have been split between the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank, which accepts the two-State solution, and the Hamas movement which took over Gaza in 2007.

Finally, the UN envoy condemned the increase in violence in the Gaza Strip. Recently, the region has witnessed an escalation of rocket attacks against Israel and Israeli air attacks against Gaza.

(BNO NEWS )

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