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"As is" reference - not a United Nations document

Source: United Kingdom
13 November 2012





EU-Arab League Ministerial meeting



Intervention by the Foreign Secretary William Hague at the 2nd EU-Arab League Ministerial meeting in Cairo.

The Foreign Secretary said:

“I am very grateful to the Government of Egypt for hosting this meeting.

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“It is also time to inject new urgency into the Middle East Peace Process. The two-State solution could disappear completely as an option very soon, not least due to continued settlement building. We are in danger of sleep walking into a serious crisis.

“We believe that there is a responsibility and an opportunity for the United States to lead a major revived diplomatic effort to restart negotiations over the coming months, and an obligation on all of us to support them in doing so. We believe that this could and should be backed by a more energetic and distinctive European Union role.

“We should not make it harder for the United States to lead a new effort. We understand and recognise the pressure on President Abbas to turn to an UNGA resolution if there is no progress. But an effort to make that progress should be tested first. We advise against symbolic gestures, and urge all parties to keep their eyes on the prize of a negotiated end to the conflict.

“These two challenges - the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the violence in Syria - make 2013 a critical year in the Middle East. But when we add to them the continuing crisis over Iran's nuclear programme, we see that we need to act to prevent a perfect storm of crises converging next year.

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