Israel must immediately recognize a Palestinian state as a national interest and work with the Palestinians to find a replacement for the Oslo Accords, Meretz Party head Zahava Gal-On said on Tuesday, at press conference she held in Tel Aviv to present the party's four-point diplomatic platform.
Under the plan, Israel and the Palestinians would carry out negotiations with the Palestinian Authority to work out agreements on security, economics, water, and other issues, and would find a temporary replacement for the Oslo Accords until negotiations on a final status agreement would begin. In addition, Israel would agree to freeze settlement construction, release Palestinian prisoners, and remove checkpoints in the West Bank. According to Meretz, the goal would be to reach an end to the conflict and a settlement of claims on both sides within four years.
In addition, the party plan calls for the founding of a “regional Quartet”, made up of Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and Jordan, inspired by the international Quartet of the United States, the European Union, the United Nations, and Russia. The Quartet would handle negotiations between the two sides and would work along with delegates from the Arab League to examine implementing the 2002 Arab Peace Initiative.
During the press conference, Gal-On presented Meretz as the “last anchor of the peace camp,” and that the public in Israel that "wants peace and believes we can reach a solution" are the alternative to "the policies of Netanyahu which stand to bring us to a third Intifada.”