Robert Serry, the Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process says the Middle East peace process is entering a critical period that requires “courageous” steps by Israelis and Palestinians to save the two-State solution.
“No international effort alone is sufficient for progress absent the requisite will from the parties themselves,” Robert Serry, the Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process told the UN Security Council on Wednesday .
“If they want to provide themselves and others with the opportunity to get on track in the period ahead, then now is not the time for actions that further undermine mutual trust.”
“This is not a time to be idle,” he state. “We are entering a critical period ahead, in which concerted action will be vital if we are to salvage the two-State solution.”
Direct negotiations between the Israelis and the Palestinians have yet to resume since talks stalled in September 2010, after Israel refused to extend its freeze on settlement activity in the occupied Palestinian territory.
There has been a “dramatic” increase in Israeli settlement announcements after the General Assembly accorded Palestine non-member observer State status in the UN in November, Mr. Serry reported, as well as the withholding and redirection by Israel of tax revenues it collects on behalf of the Palestinian Authority.
“I urge both sides to abstain from actions that will make efforts to resume meaningful negotiations even harder in the critical period ahead and I call on Israel to restore the timely, predictable and transparent transfers of tax and customs revenues without further delay,” he said.