French President Francois Hollande said a two-state solution to the Middle East conflict was the only way for Israel to remain a "pluralist and democratic society"
French President Francois Hollande said a two-state solution to the Middle East conflict was the only way for Israel to remain a "pluralist and democratic society" © Christophe Petit Tesson - POOL/AFP
French President Francois Hollande said a two-state solution to the Middle East conflict was the only way for Israel to remain a
AFP
Last updated: February 23, 2017

France insists on two-state deal for Israel-Palestine

Banner Icon France is committed to a two-state solution for the Middle East conflict, President Francois Hollande said, a week after Donald Trump broke with international consensus by stepping back from the goal.

The French leader, addressing an event hosted by the CRIF umbrella grouping of Jewish organisations, said a two-state solution was the only guarantee for Israel to remain a "pluralist and democratic society".

His comments follow the US president's shift away from an independent Palestinian state alongside Israel.

The two-state solution has long been the cornerstone of US and international policy and Trump's row-back met with hostility from other world powers when he made his remarks last week.

Hollande said there was only one way to have peace in the Middle East and that was to have Israel and Palestine side by side.

He said it was up to the Israelis and Palestinians to come to an agreement on each issue, especially on the status of Jerusalem.

France would continue to monitor freedom of access and worship for Jews, Christians and Muslims in the holy city, he told the audience.

"This is the French position and I'm sure it won't change," he added, weeks before he is due to leave office.

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