Simon Wiesenthal Center on Paris Mideast Conference: Wrong Time, Wrong Parties, Wrong Message

January 16, 2017

The final statement at yesterday’s Paris Mideast Peace Conference called on Israel to withdraw to its 1967 borders and for both parties to, “abstain from unilateral actions” that could jeopardize future negotiations.

Photo: Pro-Israel rally in Paris

“Far from advancing the cause of peace, this conclave was convened at the wrong time, by the wrong parties, and with the wrong message," declared Rabbis Marvin Hier and Abraham Cooper the Dean and Founder and Associate Dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, a leading Jewish Human Rights NGO.

“It bordered on the absurd to convene the conference just five days before Donald Trump is inaugurated as President of the United States and who has already indicated his administration will not be following the anti-Israel course recently adopted by the outgoing Administration.

“With all due respect to France and other European nations, why would Israel heed their call to return to its pre-1967 War borders — labeled ‘Auschwitz borders’ by the late Abba Eban — when European leaders have failed to secure their own borders or defeat the burgeoning terrorist acts and threats from Islamist extremists in their own cities?

“The only legitimate message this conference should have released should have echoed British Prime Minister Theresa May whose Foreign Office spokesman said London had 'particular reservations” about the Paris meeting taking place without Israeli or Palestinian representatives,' and that, 'There are risks therefore that this conference hardens positions at a time when we need to be encouraging the conditions for peace.' The British refused to sign on to the dubious document.

“The only legitimate path to real peace are direct talks between the parties. If the world wants to help in the process they can start by helping to dislodge terrorist Hamas from Gaza, along with its tens of thousands of rockets and its terror tunnel highway threatening peaceful Israeli communities. There is still hope for two-state solution, Israel will never accept a three-state solution,” Rabbis Hier and Cooper concluded.

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The Simon Wiesenthal Center is one of the largest international Jewish human rights organizations with over 400,000 member families in the United States. It is an NGO at international agencies including the United Nations, UNESCO, the OSCE, the OAS, the Council of Europe and the Latin American Parliament (Parlatino).