Photo Credit: DS Levi
So-called "State of Palestine" seated next to UN Special Representative to the Middle East Peace Process Nickolay Mladenov at the UN Security Council. July 2017

Sixty foreign dignitaries from moderate Arab countries, convening at a conference in Saudi Arabia, jointly called upon the United States to chart a clear path towards the establishment of a “Palestinian” state within three years. This demand comes amidst growing frustrations over the protracted Israeli-Arab conflict and a desire for tangible progress toward a lasting solution.

The call for action was underscored by the absence of Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, who was scheduled to meet with U.S. Secretary of State Anthony Blinken in Riyadh on Friday. Sources close to the Palestinian Authority leadership revealed that his refusal to engage with Blinken was in protest against the Biden administration’s veto of the PA’s bid for full membership in the UN Security Council.


On April 19, the US vetoed a Security Resolution unilaterally recognizing “Palestinian” statehood. State Department deputy spokesperson Vedant Patel said at the time that the PA does not meet the criteria for statehood and that the Palestinian Authority needed to undergo significant reform. Israel and the US insist that statehood must come from direct peace negotiations.

The proposed roadmap, endorsed by Arab foreign ministers and supported by European nations, outlines a phased approach towards Palestinian statehood. Central to this plan is the restoration of Palestinian Authority control in Gaza, followed by the expansion of Palestinian Authority-administered territories and crucial reforms within the PA’s governance structures. These measures are seen as essential steps towards creating the necessary conditions for meaningful negotiations with Israel.

Key components of the Arab initiative include the cessation of Israeli military activities in Palestinian Authority controlled territories, the establishment of an airport under PA control, and the transfer of control over border crossings to PA security forces.

However, the Arab proposal faces significant resistance from Washington, which insists on the primacy of direct negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians. Blinken also criticized the Arab road map’s absence of condemnation against Hamas.


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Baruch reports on Arab affairs for TPS.