§ The Earl of Sandwich
asked Her Majesty's Government:
Whether they continue to support Crown Prince Abdullah's peace plan for the Middle East; and what they see as the principal obstacles to that plan. [HL6125]
§ Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean:
We continue to welcome Crown Prince Abdullah's initiative, adopted by the Arab League as an Arab peace initiative in Beirut on 28 March. Its offer of normalisation of relations with Israel in the context of a final settlement is important. It strengthens the international consensus on the broad outlines of a settlement based on the relevant UN Security Council resolutions. This means two states, Israel and Palestine, living side by side within secure and recognised borders. The Quartet (US, EU, UN and Russia) reaffirmed the continuing importance of the initiative in their statement of 17 September.
We regret that the parties have yet to resume negotiations to reach a final settlement. Continuing violence, the absence of trust between the parties, and the lack of a clear commitment by both parties to a negotiated solution have prevented real progress. Both parties must recognise that lasting security can not he achieved through force. We will continue to do all we can to help the parties break the cycle of violence and restart political negotiations. We support the efforts of the Quartet to agree a roadmap which sets out a series of steps, leading to a final and comprehensive settlement by 2005. The priority now is to agree and implement the roadmap.