The Secretary-General spoke by telephone today with H.E. Mr. Benjamin Netanyahu, the Prime Minister of Israel.
The Secretary-General and the Prime Minister discussed the Middle East peace process and Palestinian reconciliation.
On the Middle East peace process, the Secretary-General said it was urgent to overcome the impasse in the negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians. Continued drifting will not serve the interests of both parties. He said he was convinced that realizing a negotiated two-State solution as soon as possible is in the best interest of both the Israeli and Palestinian people. He said he hoped Israel will make decisive moves towards a historic agreement with the Palestinians.
On the implications of the reconciliation agreement between Fatah and Hamas signed in Cairo, the Secretary-General noted the United Nations had consistently supported Palestinian unity under the leadership of President Abbas and in the framework of the Arab Peace Initiative and the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) commitments, consistent with the Quartet's position. The Secretary-General also noted that Palestinian unity is a process which is just beginning now, and thus, it would be best to assess it as it moves forward. He also urged Israel not to stop transferring tax revenues to the Palestinian Authority.