“A permanent and peaceful settlement of the Israeli- Palestinian conflict can only come through direct negotiations”
Washington, DC – U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD), a senior member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, made the following remarks in response to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’ speech before the United Nations General Assembly today.
“I am deeply disappointed that President Abbas has moved forward to press for a Palestinian state at the United Nations. His comments today to the General Assembly show a shocking disregard for historical fact and are unfortunately a sign that –despite his rhetoric – he is not currently a partner in peace for Israel. I urge Member States to not move on this request for unilateral declaration of statehood and instead, press the President Abbas and the Palestinians to return to the peace table for meaningful, direct negotiations.”
Earlier this summer, Senator Cardin led a group of 89 Senators with his resolution (S. Res. 185) that reiterated U.S. opposition to any unilateral declaration of Palestinian statehood. The resolution that passed the Senate by unanimous consent also reaffirmed the U.S. commitment to direct Israeli-Palestinian negotiations and opposed the inclusion of Hamas in any Palestinian unity government unless it is willing to accept peace with Israel and renounce violence.