May 29, 2002
We reiterate our deep concern for the evolving situation in the Middle East, which, over the last eighteen months has brought an unacceptable level of human loss, and destruction, grave damage to both Israeli and Palestinian societies. The negotiations have been interrupted and the prospects for a political solution have been held back. We believe that this critical situation entails a significant risk to regional stability and security. We reaffirm the need for the International Community to sustain all initiatives conducive to a peaceful solution of the conflict, for the benefit of all parties, Israeli, Palestinian, Syrian and Lebanese.
We recall the objective of such a solution, as defined also in the visions and proposals of all relevant actors in the international community, in particular the members of the Quartet in their Joint Statement of 10 April 2002, and the Arab League in the conclusions of the Beirut summit which endorsed the initiative of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. We reiterate that there is no military solution to the conflict and recall the need for a comprehensive political solution based on the principles of the Madrid Conference of 1991, UNSCR 242 and 338 and the formula of ”land for peace“. We reaffirm our support for the objective expressed by President Bush and in UNSCR 1397 of two States, Israel and Palestine, living side by side within secure and recognised borders.
We urge the parties to benefit from the present opportunity to overcome the crisis by resuming a meaningful dialogue, dealing in parallel with its political, economic and security aspects. And we call on all parties of the conflict to take immediately the steps allowing the proper development of such a process, including full implementation of UNSCR 1402 and 1403. We remain convinced that the thorough preparation of an international Conference on this subject, as considered in recent weeks at different levels and fora, is a most urgent task. The EU and Russia will work within the framework of the ”Quartet“, as well as in their contacts with the parties of the conflict and other interested actors in the International Community towards the convening of a successful conference.