Minister Flanagan to attend Middle East Peace Conference in Paris13/1/17
Minister Flanagan to attend Middle East Peace Conference in Paris
The Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Charles Flanagan T.D., will travel to Paris to attend a Ministerial Conference on the Middle East Peace Process on Sunday 15 January. The Conference is the second under the French initiative, organised and hosted by the French Government, and aimed at reigniting the stalled Middle East Peace Process.
Ireland was one of 29 countries and international organisations invited to take part in the first Ministerial Conference, which took place in Paris in June 2016. This second meeting will see a larger group of over 70 countries and international organisations coming together to discuss the Middle East Peace Process.
Speaking ahead of the Conference, Minister Flanagan said:
This meeting is very timely, coming in the wake of last month’s United Nations Security Council Resolution on settlements (Resolution 2334 of 23 December 2016).
I have made clear on a number of occasions that settlement construction is the biggest impediment to the two state solution.
I was pleased to attend the first conference organised under this French initiative in June 2016, and to support the work of Sweden and France in the civil society sphere since then.
That first meeting was the start of a process aimed at rekindling the Middle East Peace Process, which has lost momentum. Sunday’s conference, a coming together of a much larger group of countries and international organisations, demonstrates the wide-ranging international support for the two state solution.
I firmly believe that the two state solution is the only way forward. I look forward to Sunday’s meeting where, with one voice, the international community will echo this common position. Although ultimately a resolution to this conflict must come from the two parties to it, from our own experience here on this island, we know that international support can be key in achieving peace.
Following the Paris Conference, the Middle East Peace Process will also be discussed by Ministers at the Foreign Affairs Council in Brussels on Monday.
13 January 2017