DC Edit | Only 2 states' can bring durable peace in Mideast
The lack of consensus among the participants of the virtual summit of the G-20 nations on supporting the two-state solution to end the Israeli-Palestine conflict points to the deep fissures in the international community despite the display of solidarity with the idea. They become starker given that the G-20 summit held in September in Delhi was able to agree on a joint statement on the deeply divisive Russian war in Ukraine but the same grouping is now unable to push a peace idea on the West Asian conflict. There is overwhelming support for the proposal, as Indian external affairs minister S. Jaishankar put it, but when it comes to the crux, there is little to cheer, despite Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s passionate pitch for a just solution.
The two-state theory goes back to 1948 when Israel was established on the Palestinian land as per a United Nations resolution. The idea resurfaced in the form a UN resolution of 1967 which followed the Seven-Day War. The resolution had called for the “withdrawal of Israel armed forces from territories occupied in the recent conflict” and “termination of all claims or states of belligerency and respect for and acknowledgement of the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of every state in the area and their right to live in peace within secure and recognised boundaries free from threats or acts of force”. The 1973 UN Resolution which underscored the “the realisation of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, primarily the right to self-determination” and called for the “withdrawal of Israel from the Palestinian territory occupied since 1967” essentially reflected the same solution. The Oslo Accords to which both Israel and Palestine Liberation Organisation agreed to also essentially reflected the same solution to the historical problem.
It appears that a section of the actors on both sides and their sponsors elsewhere are not serious about bringing peace in the region, leaving the people of Palestine and Israel under permanent threat of elimination and extinction. The hardliners, like in every conflict anywhere, would never want to compromise their positions.
The recent humanitarian pause and agreement to exchange hostages agreed to by both Israel and Hamas are a blip on the radar, and nothing more. Both Israel and Palestine have no dearth of friends in the comity of nations but none wants to exert enough pressure to once and for all end the violence and in such a way that the will of the international community reflected in the UN resolutions is implemented. It is a stage occupied by part-time actors who would, in their own interest, get on to the stage, play the role of peaceniks and go back to the green room. The G-20 is a forum that is made of powerful forces who have the diplomatic, economic and political wherewithal and leeway to end the problem. Their unwillingness to come to a consensus is a dampener for all those who wish for peace to return to West Asia.