Obama: Status quo ”unsustainable” in Israeli-Palestinian conflict
U.S. President Barack Obama said on Tuesday that the status quo is unsustainable in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and that it is critical for the United States to advance a two-state solution.
"It's not easier than it was, but I think it's just as necessary," Obama said in a news conference when asked whether the new Israeli government expected to be formed by Likud party leader Benjamin Netanyahu would make peacemaking more difficult. "What we do know is this: that the status quo is unsustainable, that it is critical for us to advance a two-state solution where Israelis and Palestinians can live side by side in their own states with peace and security," the U.S. leader said.
"We're not going to have a peace at the Middle East right away," he added. "What I'm confident about is that we're moving in the right direction."
Obama mentioned that he had appointed former Senator George Mitchell as his special envoy for Mideast peace talks and that this demonstrated the administration's determination to press ahead regardless of the obstacles. "By appointing George Mitchell we signaled that we're going to be serious from day one," the American president said. "How effective these negotiations will be we will wait and see. I'm a big believer in persistence."
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