Obama: Mideast turmoil creates an opening for peace

US president "and unbreakable bond of friendship" between US and Israel; says he's confident relationship will grow deeper over the years.

Obama Netanyahu 311 (photo credit: REUTERS)
Obama Netanyahu 311
(photo credit: REUTERS)
US President Barack Obama said the turmoil in the Middle East had created openings for peace and that he intended to press ahead with an Israeli-Palestinian peace in welcoming Israel’s Independence Day.
“We will continue our efforts with Israel and others in the region to achieve a comprehensive peace, including a two-state solution, and to working together toward a future of peace, security and dignity for the people of Israel and all the people of the region,” he said in a statement released on Monday.
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Referring to the tumult sweeping Arab regimes, he said, “I believe that the region can be more peaceful and prosperous when its people are able to fulfill their legitimate aspirations.”
Obama also stressed the enduring ties between the United States and the Jewish state.
“Our two nations share a unique and unbreakable bond of friendship that is anchored in common interests and shared values, and the United States’ unwavering commitment to Israel’s security,” he stated. “I have every confidence that the strong relationship between our countries will grow deeper with each passing year.”
The White House also announced Monday that it was planning a second annual Jewish American Heritage Month reception for later in May. May has been thus designated in part because it coincides with Israel’s Independence Day.
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton also conveyed her congratulations to Israel in a statement released Sunday.
“Our two countries are united by a deep, unshakable friendship and bond,” she said. “We are bound together by our shared values and history pursuing freedom, equality and democracy. And this relationship is deepening every day.”
She also referred to the possibilities that new orders in the region were creating.
“As you celebrate your independence, the Middle East is experiencing rapid change. This is a moment of uncertainty, but also of opportunity,” she continued. “The security of Israel is - and will remain - a cornerstone of US foreign policy, and we will continue to strive for a comprehensive peace between Israel and all of its neighbors.”