Diplomat: UN envoy says Israel and Palestine must make ‘difficult choices’
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu - AFP/Alberto Pizzoli

CAIRO: “Difficult choices” are required from both parties, said Robert Serry, the United Nations Coordinator for the Peace Process in the Middle East, in a Tuesday meeting of the U.N. Security Council to discuss the situation in the Middle East.

Serry said the “inability of the two parties to bridge the gaps” in their substantive positions caused current failure to achieve progress in the U.N.-brokered talks, reported the official website of the United Nations.

Egypt’s Representative in the United Nations Motaz Ahmedein Khalil spoke during the session, and stressed Egypt’s support for the U.S. efforts to achieve the two-state solution, in a statement released by the Egyptian foreign ministry.

He also congratulated Palestine for joining Geneva Agreements and a number of international treaties related to human rights, stressing that such step reflects the Palestinian commitment to the principles of the International Law.

The representative also called for Israel to review its decisions to suspend negotiations with the Palestinian side and to impose more sanctions against the Palestinian people.

The Israeli government suspended the current negotiations with the Palestinians in a protest against steps taken by the Palestinian government reconcile with Hamas. Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in a statement on April 24, “The Israeli government will not negotiate with a government supported by Hamas that works to eliminate Israel.”

Israel’s representative Ron Prosor adopted the same claim during the meeting, saying that his Government wished to negotiate with a legitimate entity to represent the Palestinian people, but not with a Hamas-backed government,” reported the U.N. website

Permanent Observer for the State of Palestine Riyad Mansour said during a press stakeout after the session, “If one turned to analyze the reactions of members of Security Council, one would conclude that Israel was responsible for the impasse that we are going through, responsible of lack of success of the nine-month negotiations because they continue their illegal activities of settlements. They did not meet their obligations to release 30 political prisoners and they unilaterally stopped the talks.”

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