The impasse in the peace process is sending the Middle East back "into the darkness," Jordan's King Abdullah II said in an interview with an Israeli newspaper, parts of which were published on Thursday. "We're sliding back into the darkness," Abdullah told the Tel Aviv-based Haaretz.
The king stated that establishing a Palestinian state was key to a wider peace deal to end the Arab-Israeli conflict. "Is Israel going to be fortress Israel or is it going to be part of the neighbourhood? Because if there is no two-state solution, what future do we all have together?.
"Show me the future of Israel 10 years from now. Where do you want Israel to be vis-a-vis its relationship with Jordan and other Arab countries?
"I understand that you tend to live in the here and now. You are worried about the next threat. It is difficult for an Israeli to look into the future because of the security aspect. But if there is peace and stability, then people can look into the future."
Abdullah also urged Israel to stop settlement activity in Arab east Jerusalem. Jerusalem is "a tinderbox that will have a major flashpoint throughout the Islamic world," he said. "It is important to understand the need of ending all settlement activities and other unilateral actions that threaten the identity of the Holy City."