Jordan's King Abdullah Thursday said the Arab Peace Initiative constitutes an historic opportunity to achieve Middle East peace and end decades of conflict between Arabs and Israelis. According to Petra, the king was speaking during a working lunch with Israeli Knesset Speaker Dalia Itzik and her accompanying delegation.
The King told the Israelis that the initiative reflected the Arab commitment to peace and called on Israel to accept it as a basis for restarting negotiations with the Palestinians and for finding solutions to different aspects of the Arab-Israeli conflict.
The meeting with the Knesset delegation was one component of an Arab diplomatic offensive led by the King in Israeli and international circles to revive the peace process. During the meeting, King Abdullah added that unilateralism is a failure, and urged Israel not to squander an opportunity that will ensure it recognition by all Arab states and real integration into the region.
Israelis and Palestinians need to take steps that will build confidence between them, he said. The Jordanian monarch also emphasized that Israel must realize that the first step to ending the Arab-Israeli conflict is the fulfillment of Palestinians' legitimate rights, foremost of which is the establishment of an independent Palestinian state on Palestinian national territory.