PLO Urges Obama to Play Positive Role in Mideast

RAMALLAH, February 6, 2013 (WAFA) – Hanan Ashrawi, member of the Palestine Liberation Organization’s Executive Committee, Wednesday urged US President Barack Obama to play a more positive role in the Middle East conflict.

She said in a statement commenting on Obama’s plan to visit the region in March that would also include Palestine that he would be welcome if he leads a more balanced policy in the region.

“We welcome President Obama’s visit if it signals an American promise to become an honest and impartial peace broker,” she said. “The U.S. can play this positive role by engaging in an effective and constructive manner rather than by repeating the same policy of negotiations for their own sake.”

Ashrawi said that “for any American initiative to succeed, it should lead to urgent, substantive and serious action that will end the Israeli occupation.”

The PLO official called on Obama to act decisively to curb Israeli “violations and unilateral measures, particularly settlement activity and the annexation of Jerusalem, as well as its siege and fragmentation policies.”

She said that “any initiative must have defined objectives and a binding timeframe. This must happen before Israel succeeds in finally destroying the two-state solution and hence the chances of peace.”

“Maintaining Israel’s impunity and sense of exceptionalism, while denying the Palestinian people’s rights to sovereignty, freedom and dignity, has been lethal to any meaningful pursuit of a viable and just peace. We therefore expect that this visit will rectify the failures of the past, demonstrate a newfound political will, and lead to urgent, substantive and serious action that will bring the Israeli occupation of the State of Palestine to an end,” concluded Ashrawi.

Source: WAFA News