Delegations headed by Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) Executive Committee Secretary General Saeb Erakat and Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs Stuart E. Jones met today in Washington for the U.S.-Palestinian Political Dialogue. The Dialogue offered an opportunity for the Delegations to discuss a range of issues of concern at a senior level, including regional matters.
Both delegations strongly condemned terrorism and its supporters in the region and worldwide. The delegations agreed on the threat presented by ISIL, sharing the deep concern that ISIL has dramatically undermined regional stability, particularly in Iraq and Syria, and continues to commit gross, systemic abuses of human rights and violations of international humanitarian law.
Both delegations also discussed the significance of the PLO’s long-standing commitment to non-violence and reiterated their commitment to a negotiated two-state outcome, which is the only way to achieve an enduring peace that meets Israeli and Palestinian security needs and Palestinian aspirations for statehood and sovereignty, end the occupation that began in 1967, and resolve all permanent status issues. They also agreed on the crucial role of civil society, and the need to create economic and political opportunity for the next generation of Palestinians, noting the relevance of last May’s Economic Dialogue in Ramallah and last October’s Higher Education Dialogue in Washington to these issues.
Both delegations affirmed that the dialogue underscored the strength of the U.S.-Palestinian relationship and look forward to continuing the Political Dialogue in 2017, as an important forum to study and address the serious issues facing the United States, the Palestinians, and the region, including in the fields of trade, investment, youth, women’s rights, human rights, religion, agriculture, sports, and more.