MOSCOW, September 17. /TASS/. The Palestinian problem remains acute despite normalizing ties between Israel and a number of Arab states, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Thursday.
"Taking into account the ongoing progress in the process of normalizing relations between Israel and a number of Arab countries, we state that the Palestinian problem remains acute. It would be wrong to think that without its settlement it will be possible to achieve reliable stabilization of the Middle Eastern region," the Russian Foreign Ministry said.
The ministry called on the world community to step up coordinated efforts in this direction. "In this regard, we call on regional and international partners to intensify coordinated efforts in this important area. Russia is ready for such joint work, including within the framework of the Quartet, a mechanism recognized by the UN Security Council for negotiations on a Middle Eastern settlement, and in close cooperation with the Arab League," the Russian Foreign Ministry said.
A fair and sustainable solution
According to the ministry, in its efforts on achieving stabilization in the Middle East, Russia as a permanent member of the UN Security Council and a participant of the Quartet of international mediators, has always been guided by the importance of reaching a comprehensive Middle Eastern settlement.
"But with the understanding that its [the settlement's] integral part should be a fair and sustainable solution to the Palestinian problem in accordance with the UN-approved international legal framework, including the Security Council resolutions, the Arab Peace Initiative and the fundamental principle of "two states" - Israel and Palestine, which peacefully coexist within internationally recognized borders," the ministry stressed.
"We proceed from the fact that, as the leaders of Bahrain and the UAE declare, these states remain fully committed to the settlement of the Palestinian problem on the above mentioned international legal basis, as well as in accordance with the Arab Peace Initiative, which was approved by the heads of Arab states in 2002," it said.
The ministry also highlighted the need to focus major efforts now on resuming direct talks between the Israelis and Palestinians without preconditions "because, as historical experience shows, the parties could reach sustainable solutions to conflict situations only when they acted on a mutually acceptable negotiating basis."
On Tuesday, in Washington D.C. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the foreign ministers of the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan and Abdullatif bin Rashid Al-Zayani, signed deals on normalizing ties.