For Immediate Release
November 15, 2004
From a joint statement between the United States and the United Kingdom, 11/12/04
The United States and the United Kingdom share a vision of freedom, peace, and democracy for the Broader Middle East.
The vision must include a just and peaceful resolution of the Arab-Israeli conflict, based on two democratic states -- Israel and Palestine -- living side by side in peace and security.
Now is the time to seize the opportunity of new circumstances in the region to redouble efforts to achieve this goal. This will require a series of steps with international partners and the parties themselves.
First: Recommit to the overarching two-state vision set out by President Bush in his statement of June 24, 2002 and repeated in the Roadmap.
Second: Support the Palestinians as they choose a new president within the next 60 days and as they embark upon an electoral process that will lead to lasting democratic institutions.
Third: Mobilize international support behind a plan to ensure that the Palestinians have the political, economic, and security infrastructure they need to create a viable state. There will be no lasting solution without a Palestinian state that is democratic and free, including free press, free speech, an open political process, and religious tolerance.
Fourth: Endorse and support the disengagement plan of Prime Minister Sharon from Gaza and stipulated parts of the West Bank as part of this overall plan.
Fifth: These steps lay the basis for more rapid progress on the Roadmap as a reliable guide leading to final status negotiations.