Friday, July 28, 2006

IPCRI - A Comprehensive Approach to the Current Crisis

מרכז ישראל/פלסטין למחקר ולמידע
مركز إسرائيل فلسطين للأبحاث و المعلومات
Israel/Palestine Center for Research and Information

New IPCRI Policy Paper
A Comprehensive Approach to the Current Crisis
JULY 25, 2006

General Comprehensive Approach

It has been said that wars create opportunities for political changes. The current Middle East crisis should be used by decision makers to create opportunities to bring the region into a new era of regional and bilateral negotiations aimed at dealing with the Israeli-Arab conflict in a comprehensive fashion.

Some of the opportunities which could be created by the crisis include:

Greater will of all parties involved to replace the paradigm of violence with one of political dialogue and negotiations.
The implementation of UN Resolution 1559 and other relevant UN Resolutions.
Creating a peace process between Israel and Lebanon.
Creating a peace process between Israel and Syria.
Stabilizing a long-term Israeli-Palestinian ceasefire leading to the renewal of the Israeli-Palestinian peace process.
The utilization of international forces in various effective peacekeeping roles.
The integration of several of the regional actors in the international forces in various effective peace-keeping roles.

This paper outlines several new directions that seek to exploit and to materialize the opportunities created by the current crises. These opportunities include several bilateral tracks with specific steps that should be taken to resolve the current immediate crisis and to bring the region back to the peace track. The comprehensive approach of dealing with bilateral tracks in parallel enables the entire process to be concluded by addressing the root causes of the conflict. The comprehensive approach detailed below could lead to the development of peaceful relations between Israel and all of its neighbors in accordance with the vision of the Arab League Peace Initiative from March 2002. That initiative takes the most comprehensive approach which includes the end of the Israeli occupation in the West Bank and Gaza, the establishment of an independent Palestinian State along the 1967 borders and a just and agreed upon solution to the Palestinian refugee problem. Together with the advancing of an Israeli-Lebanese Track and an Israeli-Syrian Track, the end result could be the establishment of peace and normalized relations with all of the countries of the Arab world.

The following describes in brief the measures that we believe must be taken in order to return the region to a political process.

Israeli-Lebanon Track

A ceasefire agreement will be reached supported by the international community. The Lebanese government will ensure immediately that signs of life of the two Israeli soldiers are transmitted to the Government of Israel. A mutual exchange of all prisoners will take place immediately after the ceasefire agreement comes into force.

Israel will withdraw all of its forces in Lebanon and an effective international peace-keeping force led by NATO and mandated by the Security Council will be sent to south Lebanon. The force will work with the Lebanese Army to strengthen it as it is deployed in southern Lebanon and along the Lebanon-Israel border. The Government of Lebanon will implement UN Resolution 1559. Hezbollah forces will be immediately removed from the south of Lebanon.

Israel will withdraw from the Shebaa farms which will be turned over to the United Nations until transferred either to Lebanon or Syria.

Israel and Lebanon will enter into bilateral peace negotiations assisted and/or supervised by France and/or others with the aim of reaching a full peace treaty including normalized relations between them addressing all outstanding issues. The peace treaty will be ratified by the United Nations Security Council. This process is part of the larger regional process involving bilateral negotiations on other tracks and will be considered within that framework.

The Israeli-Palestinian Track

The Palestinian captors of Israeli soldier in Gaza must immediately show a sign of life from him.

The Palestinian President and the Palestinian Prime Minister should announce an immediate ceasefire agreed to by all of the factions including all acts of aggression against Israel, especially the Qassam rockets from Gaza. The Government of Israel should respond by announcing an immediate Israeli ceasefire including all acts of aggression against the Palestinians, especially targeted killings and Israeli military incursions in Gaza and the West Bank.

The kidnapped soldier will be released in Gaza to one of the international representatives in Gaza. The Egyptians could probably fulfill this role.

Within one week after the release of the Israeli soldier held in Gaza, and as part of the framework of the ceasefire agreement, Israel will release all of the women and minors Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisons.

One week later assuming the continuation of the ceasefire, Israel will release all of the Palestinian PLC members and Ministers from prison.

An Olmert-Abbas summit will be held immediately to begin the renewal of the political process that could focus on the ultimate coordination and cooperation of all future Israeli withdrawals from the West Bank and on outstanding issues concerning Gaza such as the passage between Gaza and the West Bank, the air and seaports, and internal Palestinian issues such as the unification of the Palestinian forces, the rule of law and order in the Palestinian territories.

Within six months of the Olmert-Abbas summit, Israel will release all of the Palestinian security-political prisoners in Israeli jails from before September 1993.

Within one year of the Olmert-Abbas summit, permanent status negotiations will ensue that will be completed within six months time leading to the establishment of an independent and viable Palestinian state and peaceful relations between the two states based on the Clinton parameters and the Arab League Peace Plan. This process is part of the larger regional process involving bilateral negotiations on other tracks and will be considered within that framework. The peace treaty will be ratified by the United Nations Security Council.

Israeli-Syrian Track

The United States will undertake to support a renewed track of negotiations between Israel and Syria following Syria's undertaking in respect of several steps that will demonstrate Syria’s willingness to change its current course. These steps will include the sealing of its borders with Iraq, the closing of the offices of Islamic Jihad and Hamas in Damascus, and the closing of the “pipeline” of transferring weapons to Hezbollah.

In agreement between the United States, Syria and Israel, the Israeli-Syrian track of negotiations will be immediately renewed.

The basis of the Israeli-Syrian track have been mostly agreed to in the past and it entails a full Israeli withdrawal from the Golan Heights. The territory of the Golan will be demilitarized forever with a ten year mandated international peacekeeping force in place.

Israel and Syria will sign a full peace treaty between them with full normalized relations. This process is part of the larger regional process involving bilateral negotiations on other tracks and will be considered within that framework. The peace treaty will be ratified by the United Nations Security Council.

The United States and the EU will provide significant funding for the economic development of Syria and the advancement of regional cooperation and economic development programs.

Concluding the comprehensive approach

The implementation of these steps in all three bilateral tracks would enable the conclusion of peace treaties and normalized relations between Israel and all of the countries of the Arab League.

Once the three trilateral tracks have reached peace treaties, the multilateral aspects of the Madrid process should re-resume with the convening of the original five multilateral working groups.

Gershon Baskin and Hanna Siniora – Co-CEOs
Khaled Duzdar and Yossi Ben Ari – Co-Directors, the Strategic Affairs Unit

P.O. BOX 9321

Telephone: +972-2-676-9460
Fax: +972-2-676-8011



Tina said...

Can this work? Will it be accepted? If so, by all means... PLEASE... let's give it a try for God's sake. I like that it pretty much leaves out the US completely. Good. Everything we touch turns to shit immediately. We should stay out of this. Except for giving aid. We had better cough up aid since we did evrything possible to ensure that it escalated to this unbelievable level.... of course why don't we ask the Katrina victims and the Iraqis about our timely aid.... cough, hack... snark.

TDharma said...

thank you for the information...all in the middle east are heavy on my mind these days...

DivaJood said...

Exactly, Tina. Bushco's idea of aid is similar to Ronnie "The Orator" Reagan's, which was "pull yourselves up by your bootstraps."

Tdharma, it is a nightmare. The IPCRI is the only organization of Palestinians and Israelis working toward peaceful settlement in the region. From their mouths to god's ears.

sumo said...

I feel so sorry for those caught in the middle. I've heard intervues from both sides of civilians and many of them say this is not what they want for either side at all. Jews don't want to see Lebanese hurt and the Lebanese don't want to see Israeli's hurt or killed. I hear anger from both sides that they feel abandoned by their own governments, that they care nothing for their suffering. Everything beautiful is being made into ruin and for what? I can't even imagine the fear they must feel. Women need to be the leaders...there wouldn't be as much contention. Women would settle it by pulling hair.

DivaJood said...

Sumo, women other than Condi "I have no soul" Rice. Women would talk.