Majallie Whbee 58.
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)
The Parliamentary Assembly of the Mediterranean called on Monday for Hamas to accept the Quartet’s three conditions for recognizing the Islamist movement – renunciation of violence, recognition of Israel and accepting the agreements signed in the past by Israel and the PLO.
Deputy Knesset Speaker MK Majallie Whbee (Kadima) said that all of the countries attending the meeting in Croatia, including Egypt, Morocco, Tunisia and Algeria, as well as the Palestinian Authority, voted in favor of the resolution. The assembly, which has 23 member-states and aims to foster cooperation among Mediterranean countries, also called for a return to Israeli-Palestinian negotiations and an end to the conflict.
“This is the first time, after 17 assembly meetings, that Israel is not the central topic and is not attacked from all sides,” said Whbee, who is one the assembly’s vice presidents.
“When the Arab world is busy with itself – regime change and violent civilian protests – democratic Israel is popular and sought after,” he added.
Representatives from member-states Turkey, Lebanon, Syria and Libya did not attend the conference.
“Settlements were not included in the final document, which presumably, the Palestinian Authority will object to in the future,” Whbee added.
The MK posited that part of the reason for the friendly attitude toward Israel is that he agreed, as a goodwill gesture, to allow the PA representative to preside over the meeting, instead of the president, from Morocco, who was absent on Monday.
Whbee added that Egyptian Deputy Foreign Minister Ashraf Hamdi said that his country remains committed to all international agreements, including the 1979 peace treaty with Israel.
The assembly also discussed environmental issues, and the possibility of an oil well exploding in the Middle East, as the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig did in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010. The member-states agreed to form a committee to prepare for such an event.
MK Dov Henin (Hadash) represented Israel in the environmental discussions.