Photo Credit: courtesy, European Union
Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid addressed the EU Foreign Affairs Council on July 12 2021

Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid told 26 European foreign ministers in an address Monday to the European Union’s Foreign Affairs Council that the “two-state solution” will not really solve anything in the conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.

“Israel has shared interests with the EU – but more than that, we have shared values: human rights, LGBTQI+ community rights, a commitment to the basic elements of democracy: a free press, an independent judiciary, a strong civil society, freedom of religion. We are committed to fighting together the climate crisis, international terrorism, racism, and extremism.”


‘My Home is Under Attack’
“I want to base our relationship on something else that is not usually talked about in international diplomacy: optimism,” he said.

“Optimism is a political force. I want us to work together on this — on the prospects for a better future. There are so many things we can do together”.

Lapid addressed the security challenges facing the State of Israel and said, “Israel will do whatever it takes to defend itself.

“I accept the idea that part of our dialogue is based on moral judgments. I want to hear your honest opinions.

“But it is not unreasonable for me to expect that this dialogue will take into account that my home is under attack,” Lapid said.

“Let me start with Iran – the number one exporter of terrorism in the world. A country that has never given up its ambition to acquire nuclear weapons and has never hidden what the target of this weapon is – us. Israel.

“On our northern border we are threatened by Hezbollah, the largest terror organization in the world, and in Syria, apart from the ongoing civil war, we are also witnessing Iranian entrenchment.

“In the south, in the Gaza Strip, we have a terrorist organization that has taken two million citizens as hostages. It uses them as a “human shields.

“This does not relieve us of our responsibility to always try to minimize casualties amongst innocent civilians. Children shouldn’t die in adults’ wars,” he pointed out.

Lapid also referred to the ‘circle of peace’ created by the Abraham Accords, the resulting normalization agreements and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Reviewing the meetings and activities he has participated in since the start of his tenure, Lapid then dealt with the issue of the conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Authority — and the reluctance of the PA to join any effort required to make peace, as their neighbors have done.

“We need this circle to eventually include the Palestinians,” Lapid said.

“It is no secret that I support a two-state solution. Unfortunately, there is no current plan for this. However, there is one thing we all need to remember. If there is eventually a Palestinian state, it must be a peace-loving democracy.

“We cannot be asked to take part in the building of another threat to our lives.

What we need to do now is make sure that no steps are taken that will prevent the possibility of peace in the future, and we need to improve the lives of Palestinians,” Lapid said.

“Whatever is humanitarian, I will be for it. Everything that builds the Palestinian economy, I am for it.”


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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for, and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.