Speaking to journalists in Berlin today (30 November), Foreign Minister Westerwelle issued the following statement in response to last night’s vote in the General Assembly enhancing the status of the Palestinian representation at the United Nations:
“The UN vote is a mandate for the parties in the Middle East to enter into direct peace talks now. This decision must be taken as an opportunity to restart direct negotiations between Palestinians and Israelis in order to enable a two state solution.
Our objective is and shall remain a fair, negotiated two state solution, as the only way for the region to achieve lasting peace and stability. That is why this UN vote is at one level a mandate to end the current stalemate in negotiations and relaunch direct peace talks. The international community will provide constructive support for these efforts.
It is a shame that the European Union was unable to arrive at a common position in this vote. However, this will not prevent us from continuing to work together for a negotiated, fair, stable two state solution which will not only enable Israel to reside within secure borders but also ensure that the Palestinians have their own, secure, independent state.”