Readers like you keep news free for everyone.

More than 5,000 readers have already pitched in to keep free access to The Journal.

For the price of one cup of coffee each week you can help keep paywalls away.

Support us today
Not now
Thursday 7 December 2023 Dublin: 10°C
Phil Behan/DFA
Middle East

Micheál Martin says it's not time to abandon 'two-state solution' to Israel-Palestine conflict

The Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs visited the region this week.

MICHEÁL MARTIN SAYS it is not time to abandon the so-called two-state solution to the conflict between Israel and Palestine, amid claims that a single state with equal rights for both sides would be more viable.

The Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs visited the region this week to press Ireland’s support for the two-state solution, which has had international support since the 1970s and particularly since the signing of the Oslo Accords in 1993.

The proposal would see Israel and Palestine exist as two separate, independent states located west of the Jordan River, encompassing territory that is currently occupied by Israel in the West Bank and Gaza.

However, the issue is complicated by factors such as the ongoing incursion of Israeli settlers into occupied Palestinian territory, the geographic separation of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, and divisions between the Palestinian political groups that govern each area.

Those factors have lead to increasing calls for a single-state solution that would see Israelis and Palestinians have equal rights within one nation.

However, the Tánaiste played down the suggestion on his final day of a visit to the region, claiming that momentum on a two-state solution is needed instead. 

“It’s not time to abandon the two-state solution, I think,” he said.

“All of the people I spoke to believe we should still commit to that. The alternative [a one-state solution] is interesting. Ireland has always looked at this through the lens of human rights, equal opportunities and the framework of international law.

“Palestinians are not getting access to basic human rights and they’re not being treated the same as others in the context of international law. And that’s a concern to us. But I think they desire self-determination.

“We believe it is important to pursue that agenda.”

The Tánaiste concluded his trip to the region with a visit to Jordan, where more than 2 million Palestinian refugees live arising from the Israel-Palestine conflict.

While there, he met with Jordanian king Abdullah II and presented awards to winners of the Jordan Young Scientist Initiative.

Earlier this week, he met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, with whom he held “frank” talks on Israeli settlers in the occupied West Bank, as well as Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas, who was said to be “complimentary” about Ireland’s position on the Palestinian cause.

Your Voice
Readers Comments
This is YOUR comments community. Stay civil, stay constructive, stay on topic. Please familiarise yourself with our comments policy here before taking part.
Leave a Comment
    Submit a report
    Please help us understand how this comment violates our community guidelines.
    Thank you for the feedback
    Your feedback has been sent to our team for review.

    Leave a commentcancel