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Israel and Palestine

Volume 691: debated on Thursday 26 April 2007

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether they will take steps to ensure that the European Union and other quartet partners apply balanced pre-negotiation conditions to both Israel and Palestine, including cessation of settlement construction and partial withdrawal of road-block checkpoints and military presence in the occupied territories. [HL3294]

We welcome the current fortnightly meetings between Israeli Prime Minister Olmert and Palestinian President Abbas, which discuss “quality of life” issues such as movement and access as well as political issues. We hope that they will continue.

We, along with the EU and quartet (EU, US, UN and Russia), have no plans to impose pre-negotiation conditions on either party. We have stressed and will continue to stress to both the Israeli Government and the Palestinian Authority the need to adhere to international law and implement their roadmap commitments. This includes freezing all settlement construction including the “natural growth” of existing settlements, and dismantling all outposts built since 2001 and easing movement and access in and between the West Bank and Gaza.