S&Ds in favour of strengthening EU-Palestine relations

S&Ds in favour of strengthening EU-Palestine relations, Husam Zomlot, personal representative of Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas, peace and stability, two-state solution, Victor Boştinaru, Richard Howitt, Middle East peace process,

Husam Zomlot, personal representative of Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas, joined the S&D Group today for  a public workshop in the European Parliament entitled 'The present and future of EU-Palestine relations - Supporting state- & capacity-building'. The European Socialists and Democrats organised the event to show their solidarity with the Palestinian people by underlining the need for peace and stability to be restored in that turbulent region and supporting the two-state solution.

Following the event, S&D MEP and vice-president for foreign affairs Victor Boştinaru MEP said:

"The presence of Husam Zomlot in the European Parliament demonstrates once again our group's commitment to further engagement with our sister parties in order to support the two-state solution and promote a common understanding that could bring Palestinians and Israelis together. Working with Husam, we have to identify ways to help Palestinian national unity and Palestinian state-building.

"The long-term conflict has corroded trust and deeply wounded the people, but as difficult as it might seem, the status quo and the occupation are unacceptable, and the only way forward is to return to the negotiation table and break the current vicious circle of violence."

S&D MEP Richard Howitt, foreign affairs co-ordinator, chair of the European Parliament's Middle East and North Africa working group and head of the event, commented:

"It is important at this very bleak moment, in relation to the Middle East peace process, that we avoid simply repeating well-known positions, but have a genuinely open discussion about any new ideas which could unlock the current impasse. The presence of president Abbas's personal representative enabled us to hear an account of what is happening on the ground now, and to hear and to be able to influence Palestinian thinking at the highest level."