AJC Welcomes Dutch Dismissal of Palestinian UDI Appeal

July 1, 2011 - New York - AJC welcomed the announcement of the Foreign Minister of The Netherlands, Uri Rosenthal, that his country will not  support any unilateral Palestinian move at the UN this fall that seeks to create facts on the ground without engaging in direct, face-to-face negotiations with Israel.

"Foreign Minister Rosenthal has adopted a welcome and decisive stance against this unilateral initiative by the Palestinian leadership, which carries potentially grave consequences not least for the Palestinians themselves," said AJC Executive Director David Harris. "The Netherlands joins Germany, Italy and several other EU countries that have taken a similarly laudable position, by clearly telling President Abbas and the Palestinian leadership that there is only one venue for peacemaking: at the negotiating table with Israel."

Following a meeting with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, Rosenthal told a press conference that The Netherlands would not support the UDI campaign. Rosenthal called for the resumption of "direct negotiations, right now" between Israel and the Palestinians.

Earlier this week, Polish Foreign Minister Radek Sikorski, whose country will hold the rotating EU presidency for the next six months, said the 27-nation bloc is working on a common position toward the Palestinian UDI campaign. Over the last several months, divisions on the issue have emerged within the EU.
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