Thursday, February 12, 2009





DANIEL 7:23-24
23 Thus he said, The fourth beast(THE EU,REVIVED ROME) shall be the fourth kingdom upon earth,(7TH WORLD EMPIRE) which shall be diverse from all kingdoms, and shall devour the whole earth, and shall tread it down, and break it in pieces.(TRADE BLOCKS)
24 And the ten horns out of this kingdom are ten kings that shall arise:(10 NATIONS) and another shall rise after them;(#11 SPAIN) and he shall be diverse from the first, and he shall subdue three kings.(BE HEAD OF 3 KINGS OR NATIONS).


What was the 1991 Madrid Conference?

General Reference (not clearly pro or con)

Ian J. Bickerton, PhD, Professor of Middle Eastern History at the University of New South Wales, Australia, and Carla L. Klausner, PhD, Professor of the Modern Middle East at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, in their 2002 book A Concise History of the Arab-Israeli Conflict, wrote:The formulas of the Framework for Peace in the Middle East signed at Camp David in 1978 [by Egyptian President Sadat, Israeli Prime Minister Begin and U.S. President Carter] were the starting point for the Madrid negotiations. Three sets of bilateral talks were to follow the opening session: between Israel and Syria, Israel and Lebanon, and Israel and the joint Jordanian-Palestinian delegation. The bilateral talks had as their foundation U.N. Resolution 242, with its principle of land for peace, and U.N. Resolution 338, which called for direct negotiations. Among the most important questions the bilateral talks were meant to resolve were the conditions for the signing of peace treaties, the boundaries of Israel, the disposition of the occupied territories, and the future of the Palestinians. The Madrid Conference also set up a series of multilateral working groups to discuss issues affecting the Middle East as a whole.

TEXT OF INVITATION 1991 Letter of Invitation to the Madrid Peace Conference

The following is the complete text of the invitation to the Madrid Peace Conference on Oct. 30, 1991, jointly issued by the U.S. and the Soviet Union:

After extensive consultations with Arab states, Israel and the Palestinians, the United States and the Soviet Union believe that an historic opportunity exists to advance the prospects for genuine peace throughout the region. The United States and the Soviet Union are prepared to assist the parties to achieve a just, lasting and comprehensive peace settlement, through direct negotiations along two tracks, between Israel and the Arab states, and between Israel and the Palestinians, based on United Nations Security Council Resolutions 242 and 338. The objective of this process is real peace. Toward that end, the president of the U.S. and the president of the USSR invite you to a peace conference, which their countries will co-sponsor, followed immediately by direct negotiations. The conference will be convened in Madrid on October 30, 1991. President Bush and President Gorbachev request your acceptance of this invitation no later than 6 P.M. Washington time, October 23, 1991, in order to ensure proper organization and preparation of the conference.

Direct bilateral negotiations will begin four days after the opening of the conference. Those parties who wish to attend multilateral negotiations will convene two weeks after the opening of the conference to organize those negotiations. The co-sponsors believe that those negotiations should focus on region-wide issues of water, refugee issues, environment, economic development, and other subjects of mutual interest. The co-sponsors will chair the conference which will be held at ministerial level. Governments to be invited include Israel, Syria, Lebanon and Jordan. Palestinians will be invited and attend as part of a joint Jordanian-Palestinian delegation. Egypt will be invited to the conference as a participant. The European Community will be a participant in the conference, alongside the United States and the Soviet Union and will be represented by its presidency. The Gulf Cooperation Council will be invited to send its secretary- general to the conference as an observer, and GCC member states will be invited to participate in organizing the negotiations on multilateral issues. The United Nations will be invited to send an observer, representing the secretary-general. The conference will have no power to impose solutions on the parties or veto agreements reached by them. It will have no authority to make decisions for the parties and no ability to vote on issues of results. The conference can reconvene only with the consent of all the parties.

With respect to negotiations between Israel and Palestinians who are part of the joint Jordanian- Palestinian delegation, negotiations will be conducted in phases, beginning with talks on interim self- government arrangements. These talks will be conducted with the objective of reaching agreement within one year. Once agreed, the interim self-government arrangements will last for a period of five years; beginning the third year of the period of interim self-government arrangements, negotiations will take place on permanent status. These permanent status negotiations, and the negotiations between Israel and the Arab states, will take place on the basis of Resolutions 242 and 338. It is understood that the co-sponsors are committed to making this process succeed. It is their intention to convene the conference and negotiations with those parties who agree to attend. The co-sponsors believe that this process offers the promise of ending decades of confrontation and conflict and the hope of a lasting peace. Thus, the co-sponsors hope that the parties will approach these negotiations in a spirit of good will and mutual respect. In this way, the peace process can begin to break down the mutual suspicions and mistrust that perpetuate the conflict and allow the parties to begin to resolve their differences. Indeed, only through such a process can real peace and reconciliation among the Arab states, Israel and the Palestinians be achieved. And only through this process can the peoples of the Middle East attain the peace and security they richly deserve.

The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), in an online article (accessed July 16, 2007) posted in the section On This Day (Oct. 30, 1991) and titled 1991: Bush Opens Historic Mid East Peace Conference, wrote the following:The conference was organised by the US and Soviet Union and has taken months of careful preparation.

Representatives from all Israel's immediate Arab neighbours were present at the Madrid Royal Palace and there was a surprise appearance from Saudi Prince Bandar Bin Sultan who had not been expected to attend.The opening day of the conference will be followed by one-on-one sessions between Israel and each of its neighbours and then wider discussions in the hope of finding a solution to end the current troubles.The aim of the talks is for all sides to resolve their rival territorial claims. Areas including the Gaza Strip, West Bank and Jerusalem are the main points of contention.
July 16, 2007 - British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC)

Palestine Facts, an online resource for topics on Israel, Palestine, and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, (accessed July 16, 2007) posted the following statements in an article titled What happened at the 1991 Madrid Peace Conference?:The Madrid Invitation, inviting Israel, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and the Palestinians to an opening conference jointly sponsored by the US and the Soviet Union on October 30, 1991, represented the result of US Secretary of State James Baker's shuttle diplomacy in the eight months following the Gulf War. The Madrid peace conference was a watershed event. For the first time, Israel entered into direct, face-to-face negotiations with Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, and the Palestinians. An intricate framework was structured for the three day Madrid Conference, followed by the start of negotiations. Two parallel negotiating tracks were established by Madrid: the bilateral track and the multilateral track. Four separate sets of bilateral negotiations put Israel together with Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and the Palestinian delegation, intended to resolve past conflicts and sign peace treaties. The first bilateral meetings took place in Madrid, on November 3 right after the formal conference ended. Over a dozen rounds of bilateral talks were subsequently hosted by the US Department of State in Washington. The multilateral negotiations targeted issues that concern the entire Middle East, such as water, environment, arms control, refugees and economic development.July 16, 2007 - Palestine Facts


Wednesday, October 30, 1991

Prime Minister Gonzalez of Spain
President Bush of the United States
President Gorbachev of the U.S.S.R.
EC Delegation
Egyptian Delegation

Thursday, October 31, 1991

Israeli Delegation
Jordanian/Palestinian Delegation - Jordanians
Jordanian/Palestinian Delegation - Palestinians
Lebanese Delegation
Syrian Delegation

Friday, November 1, 1991

Israeli Delegation
Jordanian/Palestinian Delegation - Jordanians
Jordanian/Palestinian Delegation - Palestinians
Lebanese Delegation
Syrian Delegation
Egyptian Delegation
Foreign Minister Pankin of the U.S.S.R.
Secretary of State Baker of the United States
Foreign Minister van den Broek of the Netherlands, for the E.C.

The Madrid Conference Opening Speeches October 30-31, 1991

October 30, 1991

On behalf of the Spanish Government, I want to associate myself with the warm welcome expressed to you by His Majesty the King. We have been entrusted with the honor and responsibility of hosting in our country the Middle East Peace Conference. Thus, we follow a longstanding tradition in offering you this house as your own.

Spain through her long history has known the fruits of coexistence, of tolerance, of peace among the three cultures represented here. The architecture in many corners of our soil, literature, poetry, philosophy and the sciences, still present in our libraries and which are an integral part of our identity, were once the highest expression of civilization and development in the known world. Mutual respect made that possible. Spain has also tasted the bitter results of confrontation and Al Andalus and Sefarad remained as indelible memories of happy places for many generations of men and women. That nostalgia has lived into our days. If we have known the fruits of coexistence and the bitter taste of missed opportunities, how can we not now feel the hope of an open path towards peace in that part of the world?

In the last few years our country has been immersed in a dual process of opening internally and externally. We have tried to leave behind our isolation ism and learn to assume the responsibilities that we have inherited through our history, our geography and the understanding that we live in an increasingly interdependent world. Nothing in this world can be foreign to us, and least of all the destiny of a region as close now as yours, a region which has been the cradle of cultures which became interwoven in Spain, contributing to make up her identity. We have wondered frequently if the conditions that once made possible fruitful coexistence could perhaps be repeated. A positive or a negative answer to this question would lead to hope or frustration, to peace or conflict, but I hasten to add, we have that hope and we do not want to renounce peace because new conditions exist for the two of them. Changes in the world are taking place at lightning speed so much so that it is difficult to follow the pace of the news which keep us up to date, simultaneously, of what is happening in the farthest reaching corners of the globe. Right here we can witness this new reality. The co-sponsors of this event are two men: President Bush and President Gorbachev who until yesterday headed two blocs which were faced off ideologically and militarily and who today symbolize the search for inter national relations with less weapons and greater peace, with less confrontation and greater cooperation, with less violence and greater respect for the rights of individuals and of nations.

It is imperative to recall the effort, of so very many human beings who for years have worked towards this dialogue which begins today. In the last few months within the framework of the co operation which has taken the place of confrontation it is only fair to point out the concerted effort of the Secretary of State of the United States of America and the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Soviet Union. Their skill and their ability have made possible what is, in our opinion, most worthy of noting: the beginning of this process.The entire world will hang on every word uttered and of the will shown here. There is a hope which must not be dashed to the ground. We are aware of the complexity of the process, but we Spaniards know how cooperation among cultures and the union of collective efforts can generate peaceful coexistence. Peace is the necessary condition. The region has such natural resources and human capital that in an atmosphere where conflict is substituted by cooperation the development and welfare of all the human beings living there can be guaranteed.

On the eve of 1992, a year full of events which mark past understandings and misunderstandings, which is pregnant with hope for all, we, as Spaniards, would like to continue to work with you to achieve a peace which is stable, based on justice and which can be a lasting one. In welcoming you to our house I call upon your generosity to build peace and, for the sake of your friendship with Spain, I beg your understanding for the inevitable imperfections of our organization, which has had to work in the find of time.I can assure you that we have all worked with great hope, moved by the spirit which you can feel on the streets, now full of traffic. If we can achieve peace, everything will be worthwhile. We made the effort and we will continue to do everything we can to make things easier for you.Welcome to Madrid, Welcome to Spain turned today by your presence into the capital and the homeland of peace and hope.

The Madrid Conference Opening Speeches October 30-31, 1991

October 31, 1991

Distinguished Co-Chairmen, Ministers, Members of Delegations to the Conference, Ladies and Gentlemen,It is an honor to represent the people of Israel at this historic moment; and a privilege to address this opening of peace talks between Israel and its Arab neighbors.I would like to express our profound appreciation to our Spanish hosts for their hospitality, and for making this gathering for peace possible. In its two thousand years of wandering, the Jewish people paused here for several hundred years until they were expelled 500 years ago. It was in Spain that the great Jewish poet and philosopher, Yehuda Halevi, expressed the yearning for Zion of all Jews, in the words: My heart is in the East, while I am in the utter most West.I would also like to extend our appreciation to the co-sponsors of this conference - to the U.S., which has maintained a strong friend ship with Israel in an alliance that has overcome occasional differences. And to the Soviet Union, which saved the lives of many Jews during the Second World War, and has now opened its gates to the repatriation of Jews to their ancient homeland.The people of Israel look to this palace with great anticipation and expectation. We pray that this meeting will mark the beginning of a new chapter in the history of the Middle East; that it will signal the end of hostility, violence, terror and war; that it will bring dialogue, accommodation, coexistence and - above all - peace.

Distinguished Co-Chairmen, Ladies and Gentlemen,

To appreciate the meaning of peace for the people of Israel, one has to view to day's Jewish sovereignty in the Land of Israel against the back ground of our his tory.Jews have been persecuted through out the ages in almost every continent. Some countries barely tolerated us, others op pressed, tortured, slaughtered, and exiled us.This century saw the Nazi regime set out to exterminate us. The Sho'ah, the Holocaust, the catastrophic genocide of un precedented proportions which destroyed a third of our people, became possible because no one defended us. Being home less, we were also defense less.But it was not the Holocaust which made the world community recognize our rightful claim to the Land of Israel. In fact, the rebirth of the State of Israel so soon after the Holocaust has made the world forget that our claim is immemorial. We are the only people who have lived in the Land of Israel without interruption for nearly 4,000 years; we are the only people, except for a short Crusader king dom, who have had an independent sovereignty in this land; we are the only people for whom Jerusalem has been a capital; we are the only people whose sacred places are only in the Land of Israel.No nation has expressed its bond with its land with as much intensity and consistency as we have. For millennia our people repeated at every occasion the cry of the Psalmist: If I forget thee, Jerusalem, may my right hand lose its cunning. For millennia we have encouraged each other with the greeting, next year in Jerusalem. For millennia our prayers, literature, and folklore have expressed powerful longing to re turn to our land. Only Eretz-Israel, the Land of Israel, is our true homeland. Any other country, no matter how hospitable, is still a diaspora, a temporary station on the way home.To others, it was not an attractive land. No one wanted it. Mark Twain de scribed it only a hundred years ago as a desolate country, which sits in sack cloth and ashes, a silent mournful expanse, which not even imagination can grace with the pomp of life.

The Zionist movement gave political expression to our claim to the Land of Israel. And in 1922 the League of Nations recognized the justice of this claim. It understood the compelling historic imperative of establishing a Jewish home land in the Land of Israel. The United Nations Organization re affirmed this recognition after the Second World War.Regrettably, the Arab leaders, whose friendship we wanted most, opposed a Jewish state in the region. With a few distinguished exceptions, they claimed that the Land of Israel is part of the Arab domain that stretches from the Atlantic to the Persian Gulf.In defiance of international will and legality, the Arab regimes attempted to overrun and destroy the Jewish state even before it was born. The Arab spokesman at the U.N. declared that the establishment of a Jewish state would cause a bloodbath which would make the slaughters of Ghengis Khan pale into insignificance.In its Declaration of Independence on May 15, 1948, Israel stretched out its hand in peace to its Arab neighbors, calling for an end to war and bloodshed. In response, seven Arab states invaded Israel. The U.N. resolution that partitioned the country was thus violated and effectively annulled.The U.N. did not create Israel. The Jewish State came into being because the tiny Jewish community, in what was Mandatory Palestine, rebelled against foreign imperialist rule. We did not conquer a foreign land. We repulsed the Arab onslaught, prevented Israel's annihilation, declared its independence, and established a viable state and government institutions within a very short time.After their attack on Israel failed, the Arab regimes continued their fight against Israel with boycott, blockade, terrorism, and outright war. Soon after the establishment of Israel, they turned against the Jewish communities in Arab countries. A wave of oppression, expropriation, and expulsion caused a mass exodus of some 800,000 Jews from lands they had inhabited from before the rise of Islam. Most of these Jewish refugees, stripped of their considerable possessions, came to Israel. They were welcomed by the Jewish State. They were given shelter and support, and they were integrated into Israeli society together with half a million survivors of the European Holocaust.

The Arab regimes' rejection of Israel's existence in the Middle East, and the continuous war they have waged against it are part of history. There have been attempts to rewrite this history which depict the Arabs as victims and Israel as the aggressor. Like attempts to deny the Holocaust, they will fail. With the demise of totalitarian regimes in most of the world, this perversion of History will disappear. In their war against Israel's existence, the Arab governments took advantage of the Cold War. They enlisted the military, economic, and political support of the Communist world against Israel, and they turned a local, regional conflict into an inter national powder-keg. This caused the Middle East to be flooded with arms, which fueled wars and turned the area into a dangerous battle ground and a testing arena for sophisticated weapons. At the U.N., the Arab states mustered the support of other Muslim countries and the Soviet Bloc. Together they had an automatic majority for countless resolutions that perverted history, paraded fiction as fact, and made a travesty of the U.N. and its Charter.Arab hostility to Israel has also brought tragic human suffering to the Arab people. Tens of thou sands have been killed and wounded. Hundreds of thousands of Arabs who lived in Mandatory Pales tine were encouraged by their own leaders to flee from their homes. Their suffering is a blot on humanity. No decent person, least of all a Jew of this era, can be oblivious to this suffering.Several hundreds of thousands of Palestinian Arabs live in slums known as refugee camps in Gaza, Judea, and Samaria. Attempts by Israel to rehabilitate and house them have been defeated by Arab objections. Nor has their fate been any better in Arab states. Unlike the Jewish refugees who came to Israel from Arab countries, most Arab refugees were neither welcomed nor integrated by their hosts. Only the Kingdom of Jordan awarded them citizenship. Their plight has been used as a political weapon against Israel.The Arabs who have chosen to re main in Israel - Christian, Muslim and Druze - have become full-fledged citizens enjoying equal rights and representation in the legislature, in the judiciary, and in all walks of life.We, who over the centuries were denied access to our holy places, respect the religion of all faiths in our country. Our law guarantees freedom of worship and protects the holy places of every religion.

Distinguished Co-Chairmen, Ladies and Gentlemen,

I stand before you today in yet another quest for peace, not only on behalf of the State of Israel, but in the name of the entire Jewish people, that has maintained an unbreakable bond with the Land of Israel for almost 4,000 years.Our pursuit of accommodation and peace has been relentless. For us, the in gathering of Jews into their ancient homeland, their integration in our society, and the creation of the necessary infrastructure are at the very top of our national agenda. A nation that faces such a gigantic challenge would most naturally desire peace with all its neighbors. Since the beginning of Zionism, we have formulated innumerable peace proposals and plans. All of them were rejected. The first crack in the wall of hostility occurred in 1977 when the late President Anwar Sadat of Egypt decided to break the taboo and come to Jerusalem. His gesture was reciprocated with enthusiasm by the people and government of Israel, headed by Menachem Begin. This development led to the Camp David Accords and the Treaty of Peace between Egypt and Israel. Four years later, in May 1983, an agreement was signed with the lawful government of Lebanon. Unfortunately, this agreement was not fulfilled, because of out side intervention. But the precedent was set, and we looked forward to courageous steps, similar to those of Anwar Sadat. Regrettably, not one Arab leader has seen fit to come forward and respond to our call for peace.Today's gathering is a result of a sustained American effort, based on our own peace plan of May 1989 which, in turn, was founded on the Camp David Accords.According to the American initiative, the purpose of this meeting is to launch direct peace negotiations between Israel and each of its neighbors, and multi lateral negotiations on regional issues among all the countries of the region.We have always believed that only direct, bi lateral talks can bring peace. We have agreed to pre cede such talks with this ceremonial conference, but we hope that Arab consent to direct, bi lateral talks indicates an understanding that there is no other way to peace. In the Middle East, this has special meaning, because such talks imply mutual acceptance; and the root cause of the conflict is the Arab refusal to recognize the legitimacy of the State of Israel.

The multilateral talks that would accompany the bilateral negotiations are a vital component in the process. In these talks, the essential ingredients of coexistence and regional cooperation will be discussed. There cannot be genuine peace in our region unless these regional issues are addressed and resolved.We believe the goal of the bilateral negotiations is to sign peace treaties between Israel and its neighbors, and to reach an agreement on interim self-government arrangements with the Palestinian Arabs. But nothing can be achieved without goodwill. I appeal to the Arab leaders, those who are here and those who have not yet joined the process: Show us and the world that you accept Israel's existence. Demonstrate your readiness to accept Israel as a permanent entity in the region. Let the people in our region hear you speak in the language of reconciliation, coexistence, and peace with Israel.

In Israel there is an almost total consensus for the need for peace. We only differ on the best ways to achieve it. In most Arab countries the opposite seems to be true: the only differences are over the ways to push Israel into a defenseless position and, ultimately, to destruction. We would like to see in your countries an end to poisonous preachings against Israel. We would like to see an indication of the kind of hunger for peace which characterizes Israeli society.We appeal to you to renounce the Jihad against Israel. We appeal to you to denounce the PLO covenant which calls for Israel's destruction. We appeal to you to condemn declarations that call for Israel's annihilation, like the one issued by the rejectionist conference in Teheran last week. We appeal to you to let Jews, who wish to leave your countries, go.And we address a call to the Palestinian Arabs: Renounce violence and terrorism; use the universities in the administered territories - whose existence was made possible only by Israel - for learning and development, not agitation and violence; stop exposing your children to danger by sending them to throw bombs and stones at soldiers and civilians.Just two days ago, we were reminded that Palestinian terrorism is still ram pant, when a mother of seven children and a father of four were slaughtered in cold blood. We cannot remain indifferent and be expected to talk with people involved in such repulsive activities. We appeal to you to shun dictators like Saddam Hussein who aim to destroy Israel; stop the brutal torture and murder of those who do not agree with you; allow us, and the world community, to build decent housing for the people who now live in refugee camps. Above all, we hope you finally realize that you could have been at this table long ago, soon after the Camp David accords were first concluded, had you chosen dialogue instead of violence, co existence instead of terrorism.

Ladies and Gentlemen: We come to this process with an open heart, sincere intentions, and great expectations. We are committed to negotiating without interruption until an agreement is reached. There will be problems, obstacles, crises, and conflicting claims. But it is better to talk than to shed blood. Wars have not solved anything in our region. They have only caused misery, suffering, bereavement, and hatred.We know our partners to the negotiations will make territorial demands on Israel. But, as an examination of the conflict's long history makes clear, its nature is not territorial. It raged well be fore Israel acquired Judea, Samaria, Gaza, and the Golan in a defensive war. There was no hint of recognition of Israel before the war in 1967, when the territories in question were not under Israeli control.We are a nation of four million. The Arab nations from the Atlantic to the Gulf number 170 million. We control only 28,000 square kilometers. The Arabs possess a land mass of 14 million square kilometers. The issue is not territory but our existence.It will be regrettable if the talks focus primarily and exclusively on territory. It is the quickest way to an impasse. What we need, first and foremost, is the building of confidence, the removal of the danger of confrontation, and the development of relations in as many spheres as possible.The issues are complex, and the negotiations will be lengthy and difficult. We submit that the best venue for the talks is in our region, in close proximity to the decision-makers, not in a foreign land. We invite our partners to this process to come to Israel for the first round of talks. On our part, we are ready to go to Jordan, to Lebanon, and to Syria for the same purpose. There is no better way to make peace than to talk in each other's home. Avoiding such talks is a denial of the purpose of the negotiations. I would welcome a positive answer from the representatives of these states here and now. We must learn to live together. We must learn to live without war, without bloodshed. Judaism has given the world not only the belief in one God, but the idea that all men and women are created in God's image. There is no greater sin than to ravage this image by shedding blood.

I am sure that there is no Arab mother who wants her son to die in battle - just as there is no Jewish mother who wants her son to die in war. I believe every mother wants her children to learn the art of living, not the science of war.For many hundreds of years, wars, deep antagonisms, and terrible suffering cursed this continent on which we meet. The nations of Europe saw the rise of dictators and their defeat after lengthy and painful struggles. Now, they are together - former bitter enemies - in a united community. They are discussing the good of the community, co operating in all matters, acting almost as one unit. I envy them. I would like to see such a community rise in the Middle East. And I believe that, despite all differences between us, we should be able, gradually, to build a united regional community. Today it is a dream - but we have seen, in our own lifetime, some of the most fantastic dreams become reality. Today, the gulf separating the two sides is still too wide; the Arab hostility to Israel too deep; the lack of trust too immense, to permit a dramatic, quick solution. But, we must start on the long road to reconciliation with this first step in the peace pro cess. We are convinced that human nature prefers peace to war and belligerence. We, who have had to fight seven wars and sacrifice many thousands of lives, glorify neither death nor war. The Jewish faith exalts peace even to the extent that it considers it a synonym for the Creator Himself. We yearn for peace. We pray for peace.We believe the blessing of peace can turn the Middle East into a paradise; a center of cultural, scientific, medical and technological creativity. We can foresee a period of great economic progress that would put an end to misery, hunger and illiteracy. It could put the Middle East - the cradle of civilization - on the road to a new era. Such a goal merits our devotion and dedication for as long as it is necessary until, in the words of the prophet Isaiah, we shall be able to turn swords into ploughshares and bring the blessings of peace to all the peoples of our region. Let me conclude with the words of the same prophet: Peace, peace, both for far and near, says the Lord.

Distinguished Co-Chairmen, Ladies and Gentlemen,

Let us resolve to leave this hall with a united determination that from now on, any differences we may have will be solved only by negotiations, goodwill, and mutual tolerance. Let us declare, here and now, an end to war, to belligerency, and to hostility. Let us march forward together, to reconciliation and peace.

The Madrid Conference Opening Speeches October 30-31, 1991

October 30, 1991

Prime Minister Gonzalez and President Gorbachev, Excellencies. Let me begin by thanking the Government of Spain for hosting this historic gathering. With short notice, the Spanish people and their leaders stepped forward to make available this magnificent setting. Let us hope that this Conference of Madrid will mark the beginning of a new chapter in the history of the Middle East. I also want to express at the outset my pleasure at the presence of our fellow co-sponsor, President Gorbachev. At a time of momentous challenges at home, President Gorbachev and his senior associates have demonstrated their intent to engage the Soviet Union as a force for positive change in the Middle East. This sends a powerful signal to all those who long for peace.We come to Madrid on a mission of hope - to begin work on a just, lasting, and comprehensive settlement to the conflict in the Middle East. We come here to seek peace for a part of the world that in the long memory of man has known far too much hatred, anguish, and war. I can think of no endeavor more worthy -or more necessary.Our objective must be clear and straightforward. It is not simply to end the state of war in the Middle East and replace it with a state of non-belligerency. This is not enough; this would not last. Rather, we seek peace, real peace. And by real peace I mean treaties. Security. Diplomatic relations. Economic relations. Trade. Investment. Cultural exchange. Even tourism.What we seek is a Middle East where vast resources are no longer devoted to armaments. A Middle East where young people no longer have to dedicate and, all too often, give their lives to combat. A Middle East no longer victimized by fear and terror. A Middle East where normal men and women lead normal lives.

Let no one mistake the magnitude of this challenge. The struggle we seek to end has a long and painful history. Every life lost - every outrage, every act of violence - is etched deep in the hearts and history of the people of this region. Theirs is a history that weighs heavily against hope. And yet, history need not be man's master. I expect that some will say that what I am suggesting is impossible. But think back. Who back in 1945 would have thought that France and Germany, bitter rivals for nearly a century, would be come allies in the aftermath of World War II? And who two years ago would have predicted that the Berlin Wall would come down? And who in the early 1960s would have believed that the Cold War would come to a peaceful end, replaced by cooperation - exemplified by the fact that the United States and the Soviet Union are here today - not as rivals, but as partners, as Prime Minister Gonzalez pointed out.No, peace in the Middle East need not be a dream. Peace is possible. The Egyptian-Israeli Peace Treaty is striking proof that former adversaries can make and sustain peace. And moreover, parties in the Middle East have respected agreements, not only in the Sinai, but on the Golan Heights as well.

The fact that we are all gathered here today for the first time attests to a new potential for peace. Each of us has taken an important step toward real peace by meeting here in Madrid. All the formulas on paper, all the pious declarations in the world won't bring peace if there is no practical mechanism for moving ahead.

Peace will only come as the result of direct negotiations, compromise, give-and-take. Peace cannot be imposed from the outside by the United States or anyone else. While we will continue to do every thing possible to help the parties overcome obstacles, peace must come from within. We come here to Madrid as realists. We do not expect peace to be negotiated in a day, or a week, or a month, or even a year. It will take time; indeed, it should take time - time for parties so long at war to learn to talk to one another, to listen to one another. Time to heal old wounds and build trust. In this quest, time need not be the enemy of progress.What we envision is a process of direct negotiations proceeding along two tracks, one between Israel and the Arab states; the other between Israel and the Palestinians. Negotiations are to be conducted on the basis of U.N. Security Council Resolutions 242 and 338. The real work will not happen here in the plenary session, but in direct bilateral negotiations. This Conference cannot impose a settlement on the participants or veto agreements; and just as important, the Conference can only be reconvened with the consent of every participant. Progress is in the hands of the parties who must live with the consequences.Soon after the bilateral talks commence, parties will convene as well to organize multilateral negotiations. These will focus on issues that cross national boundaries and are common to the region: arms control, water, refugee concerns, economic development. Progress in these fora is not intended as a substitute for what must be decided in the bilateral talks; to the contrary, progress in the multilateral issues can help create an atmosphere in which long-standing bilateral disputes can more easily be settled.For Israel and the Palestinians, a framework already exists for diplomacy. Negotiations will be conducted in phases, beginning with talks on interim self-government arrangements. We aim to reach agreement within one year. And once agreed, interim self-government arrangements will last for five years; beginning the third year, negotiations will commence on permanent status.

No one can say with any precision what the end result will be; in our view, something must be developed, something acceptable to Israel, the Palestinians and Jordan, that gives the Palestinian people meaningful control over their own lives and fate and provides for the acceptance and security of Israel.We can all appreciate that both Israelis and Palestinians are worried about compromise, worried about compromising even the smallest point for fear it becomes a precedent for what really matters. But no one should avoid compromise on interim arrangements for a simple reason: nothing agreed to now will prejudice permanent status negotiations. To the contrary, these subsequent negotiations will be determined on their own merits.Peace cannot depend upon promises alone. Real peace - lasting peace - must be based upon security for all states and peoples, including Israel. For too long the Israeli people have lived in fear, sur rounded by an unaccepting Arab world. Now is the ideal moment for the Arab world to demonstrate that attitudes have changed, that the Arab world is willing to live in peace with Israel and make allowances for Israel's reasonable security needs.We know that peace must also be based on fairness. In the absence of fairness, there will be no legitimacy - no stability. This applies above all to the Palestinian people, many of whom have known turmoil and frustration above all else. Israel now has an opportunity to demonstrate that it is willing to enter into a new relationship with its Palestinian neighbors; one predicated upon mutual respect and cooperation. Throughout the Middle East, we seek a stable and enduring settlement. We've not defined what this means; indeed, I make these points with no map showing where the final borders are to be drawn. Nevertheless, we believe territorial com promise is essential for peace. Boundaries should reflect the quality of both security and political arrangements. The United States is prepared to accept whatever the parties themselves find accept able. What we seek, as I said on March 6, is a solution that meets the twin tests of fairness and security.

I know - I expect we all know - that these negotiations will not be easy. I know, too, that these negotiations will not be smooth. There will be disagreement and criticism, setbacks - who knows - possibly interruptions. Negotiation and compromise are always painful. Success will escape us if we focus solely upon what is being given up. We must fix our vision on what real peace would bring. Peace, after all, means not just avoiding war and the costs of preparing for it. The Middle East is blessed with great resources: physical, financial, and, yes, above all, human. New opportunities are within reach - if we only have the vision to embrace them.To succeed, we must recognize that peace is in the interest of all parties - war, absolute advantage of none. The alternative to peace in the Middle East is a future of violence and waste and tragedy. In any future war lurks the danger of weapons of mass destruction. As we learned in the Gulf War, modern arsenals make it possible to attack urban areas to put the lives of innocent men, women, and children at risk, to transform city streets, schools, and children's playgrounds into battlefields.

Today, we can decide to take a different path to the future to avoid conflict. I call upon all parties to avoid unilateral acts, be they words or deeds, that would invite retaliation or, worse yet, prejudice or even threaten this process itself. I call upon all par ties to consider taking measures that will bolster mutual confidence and trust steps that signal a sincere commitment to reconciliation. I want to say something about the role of the United States of America. We played an active role in making this conference possible; both the Secretary of State, Jim Baker, and I will play an active role in helping the process succeed. Toward this end, we've provided written assurances to Israel, to Syria, to Jordan, Lebanon, and the Palestinians. In the spirit of openness and honesty, we will brief all parties on the assurances that we have provided to the other. We're prepared to extend guarantees, provide technology and support, if that is what peace requires. And we will call upon our friends and allies in Europe and in Asia to join with us in providing resources so that peace and prosperity go hand in hand.Outsiders can assist, but in the end, it is up to the peoples and governments of the Middle East to shape the future of the Middle East. It is their opportunity and it is their responsibility to do all that they can to take advantage of this gathering, this historic gathering, and what it symbolizes and what it promises.No one should assume that the opportunity before us to make peace will remain if we fail to seize the moment. Ironically, this is an opportunity born of war - the destruction of past wars, the fear of future wars. The time has come to put an end to war - the time has come to choose peace.Speaking for the American people, I want to reaffirm that the United States is prepared to facilitate the search for peace, to be a catalyst, as we've been in the past and as we've been very recently. We seek only one thing, and this we seek not for ourselves, but for the peoples of the area and particularly the children: that this and future generations of the Middle East may know the meaning and blessing of peace.We have seen too many generations of children whose haunted eyes show only fear - too many funerals for their brothers and sisters, the mothers and fathers who died too soon - too much hatred, too little love. And if we cannot summon the courage to lay down the past for ourselves, let us resolve to do it for the children. May God bless and guide the work of this Conference, and may this Conference set us on the path of peace. Thank you.

The Madrid Conference Opening Speeches October 30-31, 1991

The Madrid Conference Opening Speeches October 30-31, 1991

October 30, 1991

On this historic day, in this beautiful capital city of Madrid, it is a privilege indeed to be speaking on behalf of the European Community and its twelve member states.For the first time, all the parties involved in the Arab-Israeli conflict and the Palestinian question are sitting together at the conference table, confirming their commitment to a just, comprehensive, and lasting settlement. As little as a year ago, perhaps especially a year ago, most of us would have dismissed out of hand a gathering like this taking place so soon. But these are extraordinary times, holding out both challenges and promise. With their unprecedented commitment to peace, the parties have met the moment of history. Let us hope that this day, as it surely must, marks a turning point in the annals of the Middle East.Now is not the time to dwell on that history. Far from it. All too often it has been one of conflict, suspicion, and frustrated aspirations. We all know how easy it is to tap recriminations from the reservoir of bitterness that they have left. But let us today take to heart the one all-important lesson that the past has to teach. It is that this chance for peace is too precious to be wasted. It will perhaps not re turn in our lifetimes. There must be no turning back. We are today setting off on a road towards a Middle East different from the one we have known. The reestablishment of legality in the Gulf encourages us all the more to look everywhere for peace based on the rule of law. There is still a long way to go, but the objective of peace is no longer a mirage shimmering between earth and sky. It has become a living reality. It lies within range.

The Twelve pay tribute to the wisdom and courage of the parties directly involved. Israel, Syria, Jordan, Lebanon, and the Palestinians. To be here today, each has in his own way surmounted difficulties, overcome ingrained reflexes, and put aside doubts. It is a credit to them all that these have been transcended for the greater common objective. But it is absolutely essential that the commitment shown today is maintained, and that trust grows from it in the days and months ahead. The Twelve welcome and attach particular significance to the participation of Egypt. The peace treaty between Israel and Egypt was an important first step. It demonstrated that commitment and courage on both sides could bring material results. Those same qualities are in evidence here today. Let us build on them.We salute the representatives of the member states of the Gulf Cooperation Council and of the Arab Maghreb Union who are here today as observers. Their support of a peaceful settlement and their constructive role in securing the wider regional framework for peace - an area where the Twelve hope to be working closely with them - will be a much needed inspiration to progress.The presence of a representative of the United Nations Secretary-General is an affirmation that what unites us here today are the principles and the guarantees which are enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations. In a changing world, those principles are the bedrock on which a peaceful world order stands, and it is the firm belief of the Twelve that the United Nations will have an important role to play in the coming peace process.Last but not least, we commend the United States Administration which, in partnership with the Soviet Union, has mounted the effort to bring us together. Efforts which became all the more successful as a result of the new and constructive co operation between the U.S. and the Soviet Union in promoting peace throughout the world. From the outset the Twelve have given their full support to the peace initiative. Secretary Baker's unswerving determination, tireless energy, and high skill have marked the Administration's pursuit of that goal. It is an outstanding achievement; it deserves to be crowned with success.

That same wisdom and courage, that same per severance and flexibility that brought us together today must be made to prevail throughout the negotiations themselves. They are sure to be long. There may be some rough going ahead. That is why the process requires early movement and adoption of confidence building and other measures to establish trust. That is vital.It is in this spirit that the EC and its member states, represented by its presidency, will participate in the negotiating process. We will be working closely alongside the United States and the Soviet Union. We share their overriding interest in the success of the negotiations. They can count on our constructive partnership in all the phases of the negotiating process.The Twelve consider it of the utmost importance that the parties have committed themselves to the road map of this Conference: direct negotiations on the basis of Resolutions 242 and 338 along two tracks, between Israel and the Palestinians on the one hand, and between Israel and its Arab neighbors on the other. The political negotiations are to be underpinned by multilateral negotiations on regional cooperation in fields of mutual interest. We look forward and expect to be working closely with all the parties to ensure progress along these lines. Bearing in mind geographical proximity, a widely shared historical heritage, intensive relations across the whole spectrum of political, cultural, economic, and humanitarian affairs with the people of the Middle East, the Community and its member states cannot but have a close interest in the future of a region with which it shares so many interests, and are resolved to share in the building of peace.

The Twelve's guiding principles throughout the negotiating process are those which have long since governed our position. They remain unchanged. These principles are Security Council Resolutions 242 and 338, the principle of land for peace, the right of all states in the region, including Israel, to live within secure and recognized boundaries, and the proper expression of the right to self-determination by the Palestinian people. Our position on issues relating to the occupied territories, including East Jerusalem, is equally well-known. A comprehensive settlement should, in our view, encompass these principles. But we do not claim to prescribe how they should be put into practice on the ground.What is essential now, at the beginning of this Conference, is that the way be opened to movement on substance. That, in our view, is why the early adoption of confidence-building measures is vital. They will make an essential contribution to creating the stable environment which progress in the negotiations will require. In our view a halt to Israel's settlement activity in the occupied territories is such an essential contribution. Renunciation of the Arab trade boycott of Israel is another. With regard to the situation in the occupied territories, it is important that both sides now show restraint and that Israel abide by the provisions of the Fourth Geneva Convention. We look forward to a tangible improvement in the situation in the occupied territories, even before the putting in place of interim or other arrangements.Early movement along the parallel track of the negotiations between Israel and its Arab neighbors is equally indispensable. Progress towards a durable peace between Israel and its neighbors Jordan and Syria will be crucial to the success of the overall peace process. Much will depend on the early establishment of a basis of confidence on both sides. We cannot emphasize enough that the parties involved should negotiate - and should be seen to negotiate - on the implementation of Security Council Resolution 242 in good faith. Progress will undoubtedly contribute to further restoration of stability and sovereignty to Lebanon, and to the implementation of Security Council Resolution 425.

As we move forward through the twin-track agenda, progress there will need to be assisted and underpinned by regional cooperation that will yield the practical and visible benefits of peace. Clearly, regional cooperation cannot progress faster than movement towards a political settlement. But the political and regional agendas should go hand in hand, each one reinforcing the other.Given its close ties with all the parties involved, the Community and its member states undertake to make an active practical contribution to progress in this important area of regional cooperation. The multilateral working groups to be established for this purpose should start their work as soon as possible.A bold and imaginative approach is called for. We will be putting forward our own ideas. We will share with you our own experience in this regard to the benefit of all nations of the Middle East.

Building a network of mutual economic interest amongst themselves and closer cooperation with the European Community and the wider world will help the threat of conflict recede. All this will call for wider participation. That is why the Community will endeavor to associate EFTA nations, Japan, and of course, the GCC states and others in a framework of closer economic cooperation. Above all, we look forward to proposals from the parties themselves. We know the ideas are there, and we will very shortly be contacting the parties to discuss them. But regional cooperation must go deeper and wider. Elements of the process set in motion by the conference on security and cooperation in Europe could serve as an inspiration and example. It shows how a modest start can bring great results. It was during the years of the Cold War that principles for improving relations between states and between their citizens were agreed in Helsinki. These principles, and the commitments undertaken to give them effect, gradually established themselves as a code of conduct for governments, and an inspiration for the governed. Today they are universally accepted as a framework within which participating states conduct their domestic and international affairs. The CSCE also agreed [on] a series of confidence-and security-building measures, which, over time, grew into the network of arms control arrangements that has proved its worth in Europe. It is singularly lacking and badly needed in the Middle East.Europe is of course not the Middle East, but we believe that some of the lessons and experiences of CSCE could be taken on board. There is a long and difficult way to go. But in the end we hope to find ourselves in a Middle Eastern landscape that is different and new. The most prominent features of that landscape are states that are at peace with each other, where the legitimate security needs of all have been met, where peoples give shape to their own future and a new life beckons for the region as a whole, and in particular for the Palestinians, who have been the principal victims of the Arab-Israeli dispute. It is a landscape where new security arrangements have drastically reduced tension and are building confidence. Where networks of regional and economic cooperation reinforce the peace, and where the vast accumulation of armaments, including weapons of mass destruction, has been undone, and freed resources are made to meet the needs of citizens to pursue their well-being in security and in full enjoyment of their human rights.

These, and much besides, are the rewards that await the parties at the end of the road. That is our vision of a comprehensive settlement between Israel and the Palestinians and between Israel and its neighbors. Commitment, good faith, and perseverance. These are the essential ingredients of progress towards such a settlement. They have brought the parties here on this day. They must be sustained beyond it. In so doing, all the parties can count on the full support, encouragement and assistance to the negotiating process by the European Community and its twelve member states. We will give our best. That is the pledge I am honored to make on this historic day. A day that marks a courageous step for each of you, and a giant leap for peace in the Middle East.

The Madrid Conference Opening Speeches October 30-31, 1991

October 30, 1991

In the name of God, the Most Merciful and the Most Compassionate:(THIS GUYS A SHITE MAUDI WELLBOY BELIEVER)

Your Excellency Mr. James Baker, Secretary of State of the U.S.A., Your Excellency Mr. Boris Pankin, Foreign Minister of the U.S.S.R., Excellencies, Heads of Delegations,Allow me at the outset to convey to you and to the Peace Conference which you compose, a message of profound appreciation and sincere hopes from President Hosni Mubarak, of the Arab Republic of Egypt, that the convening of the Peace Conference in the Middle East would launch a genuine peace process ushering in all the peoples of the Middle East towards new vistas replacing inequity with justice, oppression with freedom, occupation with liberation, hostility with coexistence, doubts with confidence, and war with peace.A multitude of emotions overwhelm us when we gather today in this great country, Spain, whose his tory witnessed long centuries of prosperous Arab culture, which achieved active and positive inter action between Latin and Arabic cultures. It laid [the] basis of a very rich cultural blend and back ground. This blend stands today an evidence of communication, not alienation or isolation of cultures, of the consolidation of coexistence, cooperation and peace.We, Egyptians and Arabs, authors of history, contributors to world civilization, ancient and con temporary, unmistakably and authentically, have strongly determined to participate in the formulation of a framework of a new world, a framework of cooperation and interaction, with principles of justice, legitimacy as its texture; equality and reciprocity in rights and obligations as its structure.

The great efforts exerted to help convene this historic gathering to launch the peace process in the Middle East, represent signals, to be hopefully con firmed by the forthcoming negotiations, of the emergence of a new will, of a staunch determination by all to achieve a just, comprehensive, peaceful settlement of the Arab-Israeli conflict, the core of which is the question of Palestine.At this crossroad of world history, when all the peoples in the Middle East look forward with hope and anticipation to this great event, we, along with millions of Arabs, and Israelis, indeed all those who genuinely advocate peace and freedom, feel profoundly indebted to the courageous, unrelenting and determined efforts of the U.S. Administration throughout the few months since March 8, when President Bush embarked on his peace initiative, with the active and consistent support of the Soviet Union. U.S. Secretary of State James Baker, through his unending highly commendable diplomatic creativity, to which I am a witness and at long last, accomplished a historic mission. The Palestinian people through their representatives took the difficult decision, so did Syria, Jordan and Israel. The decision is historic. The significance is great, it is a courageous decision to respond to the challenge of peace, a decision which we believe will be also an option for peace.The unprecedented transformations in inter national relations which demolished walls of isolation, ideologies of confrontation, did lay the foundations for just settlements and achievement of peace in many troubled and conflict areas.

The evolution of history at this juncture has opened for peoples and states which have not, for different reasons, availed themselves of peace opportunities before; new, probably last, prospects for the exercise of the free will of peoples to choose their own future for the restoration of their rights, opening horizons of cooperation, mutual recognition of rights and duties, for the establishment of peace with justice that would resolve the conflicting claims in a spirit of reconciliation, accommodation and harmony through dialogue and negotiation.The cradle of the most ancient civilizations, the birthplace of three monotheistic divine religions, Judaism, Christianity and Islam; the Middle East, was plagued for decades with wars, violence and revenge. More than any other region in the world, it has been doomed with untold-of tragedies, full of tears, blood and human miseries. Despair, frustration, chaos and death were the haunting figure roving in all parts of these otherwise blessed territories.The Middle East region is not perennially doomed to this fate. We believe in our collective ability to reorient the course of history, to write a new chapter for the Middle East, void of the bitter legacies of acrimony, vendetta, fears, and doubts, but instead, full of tolerance, confidence, fervor, and joint human endeavor for the sake and benefit of the future generations, Arabs and Israelis and the whole world.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Peace was the message emanating from the East, from Mount Sinai in Egypt, from Nazareth and Jerusalem, from Mecca and Medina, those eternal beacon houses for mankind. Peoples in the four corners of the world espoused the message of peace and echoed the call for one God Almighty. Will the sons of Abraham rededicate themselves to the divine message of peace and brotherhood? The decision is ours. We will stand accountable before our people and the peoples of the world if we fail to pass the test, and we must pass the test.With goodwill, strong determination and positive political will, we can make 1991 the beginning of the end of a long agonizing ordeal. This is a moment of historic decision, a moment for courage, patience, wisdom, self-confidence and vision.In history, ancient, medieval, or modern, balances of power are never eternal. At a time, could be replaced or even annulled in different contexts of time or space. History stands a most eloquent testimony to this fact. Force never resolved a conflict similar to that of the Middle East and never will, especially if it involves a multitude of factors and claims against a background of religion, history, culture and geography and when it involves more than one party.This is the inherent morale behind the Arab-Israeli conflict. It is a conflict which defied resolution by sheer force. It is a conflict over rights, claims, counterclaims which have to be reconciled but not denied or suppressed.To this end, Egypt, an equal and full partner in the quest for peace, will leave no stone unturned, no path uncharted, no horizons unexplored to discharge its responsibility towards its Arab and Palestinian brothers and towards the whole region until the establishment of a genuine peace in honor and dignity.Egypt is bound by historic, cultural ties and legal obligations with its Arab brethren, and the peace relationship with Israel, which would warrant a staunch support of their legitimate demands for the implementation of U.N. Resolutions 242 and 338 and to help evolve a framework of a viable peace, security and cooperation among all countries of the Middle East parties to this conflict.Egypt feels strongly reassured that by the sponsorship of the U.S.A. and the U.S.S.R., indeed their co-chairmanship and participation in the Conference itself, the peace process stands on a most secure, most solid launching pad. The participation of the E.E.C. constitutes an added and necessary reassurance. The positive attitudes of the E.E.C. towards the legitimate rights of the parties to the conflict invite our appreciation. The U.N. presence symbolizes international legitimacy and its Resolutions 242 and 338, the basis of the negotiation pro cess. The principles of its Charter form the frame work under which any just and acceptable settlement could be reached.

The broadbased international participation underlines the unflinching international support for the peace process which provides the driving force behind the progress towards the attainment of its objectives. Peace dividends will not be exclusive reward for one party nor for the parties directly involved in the process of negotiations. The whole region, the Mediterranean, Europe, the world at large will share the fruits of peace in the Middle East. They all have a high and direct stake in the just and comprehensive settlement of the Arab-Israeli conflict that should fulfill the legitimate inalienable rights for all peoples, including the Palestinian people, and in particular its right to self-determination; a peace that should provide for the security of all states including the State of Israel through mutual recognition of rights based on equity and justice.Egypt at one of its finest moments, 1973, called for peace. In 1977 it pioneered the march toward peace, in 1979 [it] endorsed this peace with Israel. Throughout our tireless and undaunting efforts for peace, our position has always been and will always be grounded in our commitment to international legitimacy, to the U.N. Charter and its resolutions. Today we are all the more devoted to the same principles unchanged and unnegotiable.

Ladies and Gentlemen, Peace which we intend to establish, to consolidate and safeguard, should be built in the formula land for peace as reflected in Security Council Resolution 242 which unequivocally reaffirmed the inherent principle of the U.N. Charter on the in admissibility of acquisition of territories by force, and the rights of all states to live in peace and security.This peace is based on a number of fundamentals, basics and factors. It means right for right, obligation for obligation. Security for security, sovereignty for sovereignty. In our conviction, this and only this can fulfill the formula peace for peace.It is inconceivable that principles long endorsed and internationally accepted would be renegotiated or reinterpreted, or outbid complete withdrawal from all Arab territories, occupied in 1967, in the West Bank including East Jerusalem, Gaza, the Syrian Golan Heights pursuant to Security Council Resolution 242 and also from Southern Lebanon pursuant to Security Council Resolution 425, is the right prelude to promote a genuine peace with justice and dignity. Arab rights to Arab territories cannot be compromised. Recognition of the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people is the prime assurance for peaceful coexistence of Israelis, Palestinians, indeed the Arabs in their respective homelands.Arabs did not come to relinquish their rights, accepted, endorsed, and supported by rules of inter national law, principles of justice, U.N. Charter, resolutions and world consensus, nor did they come to concede their commitments to these principles and norms; they came to search, in good faith, with mutual trust, for a common ground for acceptable formulas on how to meet concerns, reconcile different demands, reach agreements and modalities that would secure the legitimate requirements of all par ties equitably and without prejudice to the rights of any party. We call upon Israel to do the same.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Launching this historic peace process should not be fettered with obstacles impeding its steady evolution towards a comprehensive permanent settlement. Basic fundamental requirements have to be respected and met.First: The legal status of the Palestinian people should not be challenged. They are not just proprietors, inhabitants or residents of conquered territories. They are people with history, culture, distinct national identity worthy of all the attributes of other peoples.Second: The West Bank, Gaza and Golan Heights are occupied Arab territories subject to the full implementation of Security Council Resolution 242. They are not also conquered territories. They are not lands promised to other peoples. They have their legitimate sovereigns. Claims not based on principles of legitimacy and international law, have no place in the world of today.Third: Settlements established in territories occupied since 1967 including Jerusalem are illegal, and more settlements will foreclose potential progress towards real peace, cast doubts on the credibility of the process itself. They have to be stopped as they obstruct peace, undermine the groundwork for negotiations on the final status of the occupied territories and erode the will to coexist.Fourth: The holy city of Jerusalem has its special status. It should remain free, accessible and sacred to all followers of Islam, Christianity and Judaism. The occupying power should not exercise monopoly, illegal sovereignty over this holy city. Persistence of unilateral decisions declared by the occupying power to annex the holy city lacks any validity or legitimacy. The status of the holy city should be subject to negotiations and settled by agreement on the context of legitimacy established by internationally accepted resolutions.The Arab-Israeli dispute is in essence an Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Any breakthrough or progress depends on the settlement of the question of Pales tine, in terms of rights and territories. It also re quires termination of the Israeli occupation of the Syrian territories occupied in 1967 and Israeli withdrawal to Syrian international borders. Progress towards attainment of these objectives should be guided by rationality and wisdom. It should achieve justice and equity within the context of balanced rights and obligations on the basis of international legitimacy, conscious and with clear understanding of the historical developments.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

This peace conference heralds a new turning point in the history of the Middle East. It brings time-old adversaries and enemies to a meeting ground. It attempts to bridge unsurmountable gaps among former antagonists. It is an embodiment of the deep yearning of the Arab people, the Palestinians and the Israelis for peace. We hope that the Conference will resolve, with the peace process it launches, the historic conflict between the Arabs and the Israelis.We should not fail our peoples and the peoples of the world. We should not succumb to moments of despair. We come here not to lose, but to win, together. Our dividend is peace, it is a most precious dividend, that cannot be bargained away. Mil lions of parents, Arabs and Israelis, with their hearts broken with anguish for their lost sons, absent husbands, for their beloved ones who never returned home, are looking forward with anxious, long-waiting weary eyes.These millions are gathered together by rays of hope. They are the corps of peace not the divisions of war, they hold and raise olive branches and address to all of us an appeal of peace and brother hood to force open the gateway of a new history for mankind. The difficulties are great, but prospects are bright. New vistas of cooperation will be opened, new lines of communication will be established. The time has come to free the Middle East from sources of tension, weapons of mass destruction, primarily nuclear, so that resources, hitherto squandered on arms race, will be directed for development needs, common welfare and prosperity. This is a moment of truth, commitment and hope. We have opted for peace. The path is thorny, the march is tiring and the challenge is colossal. But the objective is great, noble, and worth our pilgrimage for peace.Thank you.

The Madrid Conference Opening Speeches October 30-31, 1991

The Madrid Conference Opening Speeches October 30-31, 1991

October 31, 1991

Secretary Baker, Foreign Minister Pankin, Your Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

On behalf of the Palestinian delegation, I would like to extend our warmest gratitude to our host, the Government of Spain, for its gracious hospitality, and to King Carlos and Prime Minister Gonzalez. We thank the co-sponsors of this Middle East Peace Conference for their relentless efforts in convening this Conference. A special thanks is due from our delegation to the United Nations and to the nations of Europe and Scandinavia, for their consistent and principled support for the rights of the Palestinian people.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

We meet in Madrid, a city with the rich texture of history, to weave together the fabric which joins our past with the future, to reaffirm a wholeness of vision, which once brought about a rebirth of civilization and a world order based on harmony in diversity.Once again, Christian, Moslem, and Jew face the challenge of heralding a new era enshrined in global values of democracy, human rights, freedom, justice, and security. From Madrid we launch this quest for peace, a quest to place the sanctity of human life at the center of our world and to redirect our energies and resources from the pursuit of mutual destruction to the pursuit of joint prosperity, progress, and happiness.We, the people of Palestine, stand before you in the fullness of our pain, our pride, and our anticipation, for we have long harbored a yearning for peace and a dream of justice and freedom. For too long the Palestinian people have gone unheeded, silenced, and denied our identity negated by political expediency, our rightful struggle against injustice maligned, and our present existence subsumed by the past tragedy of another people.Your Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen, for the greater part of this century, we have been victimized by the myth of a land without a people, and described with impunity as the invisible Palestinians. Before such willful blindness, we refused to disappear or to accept a distorted identity. Our Intifada is a testimony to our perseverance and resilience, waged in a just struggle to regain our rights.It is time for us to narrate our own story, to stand witness as advocates of a truth which has long lain buried in the consciousness and conscience of the world. We do not stand before you as supplicants, but rather as the torch bearers who know that in our world of today, ignorance can never be an excuse. We seek neither an admission of guilt after the fact, nor vengeance for past iniquities, but rather an act of will that would make a just peace a reality. We speak out, ladies and gentlemen, from the full conviction of the rightness of our cause, the verity of our history, and the depth of our commitment. Therein lies the strength of the Palestinian people today, for we have scaled the walls of fear and reticence and we wish to speak out with the courage and integrity that our narrative and his tory deserve.

The co-sponsors have invited us here today to present our case and to reach out to the other with whom we have had to face a mutually exclusive reality on the land of Palestine. But even in the invitation to this Peace Conference, our narrative was distorted and our truth only partially acknowledged. The Palestinian people are one, fused by centuries of history in Palestine, bound together by a collective memory of shared sorrows and joys and sharing a unity of purpose and vision. Our songs and ballads, our folk tales and children's stories, the dialect of our jokes, the images of our poems, that hint of melancholy which colors even our happiest moments, are as important to us as the blood ties which link our families and clans.Yet the invitation to discuss peace, the peace we all desire and need, comes to only a portion of our people. It ignores our national, historical, and organic unity. We come here wrenched from our sisters and brothers in exile to stand before you as the Palestinians under occupation, although we maintain that each of us represents the rights and interest of the whole. We have been denied the right to publicly acknowledge our loyalty to our leadership and system of government, but allegiance and loyalty cannot be censored or severed. Our acknowledged leadership is more than just the democratically chosen leadership of all the Palestinian people; it is the symbol of our national identity and unity - the guardian of our past, the protector of our present, and the hope of our future. Our people have chosen to entrust it with their history and the preservation of our precious legacy. This leadership has been clearly and unequivocally recognized by the community of nations, with only a few exceptions who had chosen, for so many years, shadow over substance.Regardless of the nature and conditions of our oppression, whether the dispossession and dispersion of exile or the brutality and repression of the occupation, the Palestinian people cannot be torn asunder. They remain united, a nation wherever they are, or are forced to be. And Jerusalem, ladies and gentlemen, that city which is not only the soul of Palestine but the cradle of three world religions, is tangible even in its claimed absence from our midst at this stage. Its apparent, though artificial, exclusion from this Conference is a denial of its right to seek peace and redemption, for it too has suffered from war and occupation. Jerusalem, the city of peace, has been barred from a peace Conference and deprived of its calling. Palestinian Jerusalem, the capital of our homeland and future state, defines Palestinian existence - past, present and future - but itself has been denied a voice and an identity. Jerusalem defies exclusive possessiveness or bondage. Israel's annexation of Jerusalem remains both clearly illegal in the eyes of the world community and an affront to the peace that this city deserves.

We come to you from a tortured land and a proud, though captive, people, having been asked to negotiate with our occupiers, but leaving behind the children of the Intifada, and a people under occupation and under curfew, who enjoined us not to sur render or forget. As we speak, thousands of our brothers and sisters are languishing in Israeli prisons and detention camps, most detained without evidence, charge, or trial, many cruelly mistreated and tortured in interrogation, guilty only of seeking freedom or daring to defy the occupation. We speak in their name and we say: set them free.As we speak, the tens of thousands who have been wounded or permanently disabled are in pain: let peace heal their wounds. As we speak, the eyes of thousands of Palestinian refugees, deportees, and displaced persons since 1967 are haunting us, for exile is a cruel fate: bring them home. They have the right to return. As we speak, the silence of demolished homes echoes through the halls and in our minds: we must rebuild our homes in our free state.And what do we tell the loved ones of those killed by army bullets? How do we answer the questions and the fear in our children's eyes? For one out of three Palestinian children under occupation has been killed, injured, or detained in the past four years. How can we explain to our children that they are denied education, our schools so often closed by army fiat? Or why their life is in danger for raising a flag in a land where even children are killed or jailed? What requiem can be sung for trees uprooted by army bulldozers? And, most of all, who can explain to those whose lands are confiscated and clear waters stolen, the message of peace? Remove the barbed wire, restore the land and its life-giving water.The settlements must stop now. Peace cannot be waged while Palestinian land is confiscated in myriad ways and the status of the Occupied Territories is being decided each day by Israeli bulldozers and barbed wire. This is not simply a position; it is an irrefutable reality. Territory for peace is a travesty when territory for illegal settlement is official Israeli policy and practice. The settlements must stop now. In the name of the Palestinian people, we wish to directly address the Israeli people with whom we have had a prolonged exchange of pain: let us share hope instead. We are willing to live side by side on the land and the promise of the future. Sharing, however, requires two partners willing to share as equals. Mutuality and reciprocity must replace domination and hostility for genuine reconciliation and coexistence under international legality. Your security and ours are mutually dependent, as entwined as the fears and nightmares of our children.We have seen some of you at your best and at your worst, for the occupier can hide no secrets from the occupied, and we are witness to the toll that occupation has exacted from you and yours. We have seen you anguish over the transformation of your sons and daughters into instruments of a blind and violent occupation - and we are sure that at no time did you envisage such a role for the children whom you thought would forge your future. We have seen you look back in deepest sorrow at the tragedy of your past and look on in horror at the disfigurement of the victim turned oppressor. Not for this have you nurtured your hopes, dreams and your offspring.

This is why we have responded with solemn appreciation to those of you who came to offer consolation to our bereaved, to give support to those whose homes were being demolished, and to extend encouragement and counsel to those detained behind barbed wire and iron bars. And we have marched together, often choking together at the non-discriminatory tear gas or crying out in pain as the clubs descended on both Palestinian and Israeli alike. For pain knows no national boundaries, and no one can claim a monopoly on suffering.We once formed a human chain around Jerusalem, joining hands and calling for peace. Let us today form a moral chain around Madrid and continue that noble effort for peace and the promise of freedom for our sons and daughters. Break through the barriers of mistrust and manipulated fears. Let us look forward in magnanimity and in hope.To our Arab brothers and sisters, most of whom are represented here in this historic occasion, we express our loyalty and gratitude for their life-long support and solidarity. We are here together seeking a just and lasting peace whose cornerstone is freedom for Palestine, justice for the Palestinians, and an end to the occupation of all Palestinian and Arab lands. Only then can we really enjoy together the fruits of peace: prosperity, security and human dignity and freedom.In particular, we address our Jordanian col leagues in our joint delegation. Our two peoples have a very special historic and geographic relation ship. Together, we shall strive to achieve peace. We will continue to strive for our sovereignty, while proceeding freely and willingly to prepare the grounds for a confederation between the two states of Palestine and Jordan, which can be a cornerstone for our security and prosperity.To the community of nations on our fragile planet, to the nations of Africa and Asia, to the Muslim world, and particularly to Europe, on whose southern and neighborly shores we meet today: from the heart of our collective struggle for peace, we greet you and acknowledge your support and recognition. You have recognized our rights and our government, and have given us real support and protection. You have penetrated the distorting mist of racism, stereotyping, and ignorance and committed the act of seeing the invisible and listening to the voice of the silenced. The Palestinians, under occupation and in exile, have become a reality in your eyes and, with courage and determination, you have affirmed the truth of our narrative. You have taken up our cause and our case, and we have brought you into our hearts. We thank for caring and daring to know the truth - the truth which must set us all free.To the co-sponsors and participants in this occasion of awe and challenge, we pledge our commitment to the principle of justice, peace, and reconciliation based on international legitimacy and uniform standards. We shall persist, in our quest for peace, to place before you the substance and determination of our people, often victimized but never defeated. We shall pursue our people's right to self- determination, to the exhilaration of freedom, and to the warmth of the sun as a nation among equals.This is the moment of truth; you must have the courage to recognize it and the will to implement it for our truth can no longer be hidden away in the dark recesses of inadvertency or neglect. The people of Palestine look at you with a straightforward, direct gaze, seeking to touch your heart, for you have dared to stir up hopes that cannot be abandoned. You cannot afford to let us down, for we have lived up to the values you espouse, and we have remained true to our cause.

We, the Palestinian people, made the imaginative leap in the Palestine National Council of November 1988, during which the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) launched its peace initiative based on Security Council Resolutions 242 and 338, and declared Palestinian independence based on Resolution 181 of the United Nations, which gave birth to two states in 1948: Israel and Palestine. In December 1988, a historic speech before the United Nations in Geneva led directly to the launching of the Palestinian-American dialogue. Ever since then, our people has responded positively to every serious peace initiative and has done its utmost to ensure the success of this process. Israel, on the other hand, has placed many obstacles and barriers in the path of peace to negate the very validity of the process. Its illegal and frenzied settlement activity is the most glaring evidence of its rejectionism, the latest settlement being erected just two days ago.These historic decisions of the Palestine National Council wrenched the course of history from inevitable confrontation and conflict towards peace and mutual recognition. With our own hands, and in an act of sheer will, we have molded the shape of the future of our people. Our parliament has articulated the message of a people with the courage to say yes to the challenge of history, just as it provided the reference, in its resolutions last month in Algiers and in the Central Council meeting this month in Tunis, to go forward to this historic Conference. We cannot be made to bear the brunt of other people's no. We must have reciprocity. We must have peace.Ladies and gentlemen, in the Middle East there is no superfluous people outside time and place, but rather a state sorely missed by time and place - the state of Palestine. It must be born on the land of Palestine to redeem the injustice of the destruction of its historical reality and to free the people of Palestine from the shackles of their victimization. Our homeland has never ceased to exist in our minds and hearts, but it has to exist as a state on all the territories occupied by Israel in the war of 1967, with Jerusalem as its capital, in the context of that city's special status and its non-exclusive character.This state, in a condition of emergence, has already been a subject of anticipation for too long. It should take place today, rather than tomorrow. However, we are willing to accept the proposal for a transitional stage, provided interim arrangements are not transformed into permanent status. The time frame must be condensed to respond to the dispossessed Palestinians' urgent need for sanctuary and to the occupied Palestinians' right to gain relief from oppression and to win recognition of their authentic will. During this phase, international protection for our people is most urgently needed, and the de jure application of the Fourth Geneva Convention is a necessary condition.The phases must not prejudice the outcome; rather they require an internal momentum and motivation to lead sequentially to sovereignty. Bilateral negotiations on the withdrawal of Israeli forces, the dissolution of Israeli administration and the transfer of authority to the Palestinian people cannot proceed under coercion or threat in the current asymmetry of power. Israel must demonstrate its willingness to negotiate in good faith by immediately halting all settlement activity and land confiscation while implementing meaningful confidence-building measures. Without genuine progress, tangible constructive changes and just agreements during the bilateral talks, multilateral negotiations will be meaningless. Regional stability, security, and development are the logical outcome of an equitable and just solution to the Palestinian question, which remains the key to the resolution of wider conflicts and concerns.

In its confrontation of wills between the legitimacy of the people and the illegality of the occupation, the Intifada's message has been consistent: to embody the Palestinian state and to build its institutions and infrastructure. We seek recognition for this creative impulse which nurtures within it the potential nascent state. We have paid a heavy price for daring to substantiate our authenticity and to practice popular democracy in spite of the cruelty of occupation. It was a sheer act of will that brought us here, the same will which asserted itself in the essence of the Intifada, as the cry for freedom, an act of civil resistance, and people's participation and empowerment. The Intifada is our drive towards nation building and social transformation.We are here today with the support of our people, who have given itself the right to hope and to make a stand for peace. We must recognize, as well, that some of our people harbor serious doubts and skepticism about this process. Within our democratic, social, and political structures, we have evolved a respect for pluralism and diversity, and we shall guard the opposition's right to differ within the parameters of mutual respect and national unity.The process launched here must lead us to the light at the end of the tunnel, and this light is the promise of a new Palestine - free, democratic, and respectful of human rights and the integrity of nature. Self-determination, ladies and gentlemen, can neither be granted nor withheld at the whim of the political self-interest of others, for it is enshrined in all international charters and humanitarian law. We claim this right; we firmly assert it here before you and in the eyes of the rest of the world, for it is a sacred and inviolable right which we shall relentlessly pursue and exercise with dedication and self-confidence and pride.Let us end the Palestinian-Israeli fatal proximity in this unnatural condition of occupation, which has already claimed too many lives. No dream of expansion or glory can justify the taking of a single life. Set us free to reengage as neighbors and as equals on our holy land.To our people in exile and under occupation, who have sent us to this appointment laden with their trust, love, and aspirations, we say that the load is heavy, and the task is great, but we shall be true. In the words of our great national poet, Mahmoud Darwish: My homeland is not a suitcase, and I am no traveler. To the exiled and the occupied, we say: You shall return and you shall remain and we will prevail, for our cause is just. We will put on our embroidered robes and kafiyyas and, in the sight of the world, celebrate together on the day of liberation.Refugee camps are no fit home for people who had been reared on the land of Palestine, in the warmth of the sun and freedom. The hail of Israeli bombs, almost daily pouring down on our defense less civilian population in the refugee camps of Lebanon, is no substitute for the healing rain of the homeland. Yet, the international will had ensured their return in United Nations Resolution 194 - a fact willfully ignored and unenacted. Similarly, all other resolutions pertinent to the Palestinian question, beginning with Resolution 181, through Resolutions 242 and 338, and ending with Security Council Resolution 681, have, until now, been relegated to the domain of public debate, rather than real implementation. They form the larger body of legality, including all relevant provisions of international law, within which any peaceful settlement must proceed. If international legitimacy and the rule of law are to prevail and govern relations among nations, they must be respected and, impartially and uniformly, implemented. We, as Palestinians, require nothing less than justice.

To Palestinians everywhere: today we bear in our hands the precious gift of your love and your pain, and we shall set it down gently here before the eyes of the world and say - there is a right here which must be acknowledged, the right to self-determination and statehood; there is strength and there is the scent of sacred incense in the air. Jerusalem, the heart of our homeland and the cradle of the soul, is shimmering through the barriers of occupation and deceit. The deliberate violation of its sanctity is also an act of violence against the collective human, cultural, and spiritual memory and an aggression against its enduring symbols of tolerance, magnanimity, and respect for cultural and religious authenticity. The cobbled streets of the Old City must not echo with the discordant beat of Israeli military boots; we must restore to them the chant of the muezzin, the chimes of the church bells, and the prayers of all the faithful calling for peace in the City of Peace.From Madrid, let us light the candle of peace and let the olive branch blossom. Let us celebrate the rituals of justice and rejoice in the hymns of truth, for the awe of the moment is a promise to the future, which we must all redeem. The Palestinians will be free, and will stand tall among the community of nations in the fullness of the pride and dignity which by right belongs to all people. Today, our people under occupation are holding high the olive branch of peace. In the words of Chairman Arafat in 1974 before the U.N. General Assembly: Let not the olive branch of peace fall from my hands. Let not the olive branch of peace fall from the hands of the Palestinian people.

The Madrid Conference Opening Speeches October 30-31, 1991

The Madrid Conference Opening Speeches October 30-31, 1991

The Madrid Conference Closing Speeches November 1, 1991

November 1, 1991

Distinguished Co-Chairmen, Ladies and Gentlemen,

Let me first apologize, as I have to leave this hall immediately after my statement, together with some of my colleagues, in order to return to Israel before sunset, in time for the advent of our holy day of rest. I trust no one will see in this a sign of disrespect.Let me also express again our thanks and appreciation to our Spanish hosts and to the co-sponsors for putting so much effort in making this conference possible.For two days, we have sat in this hall, armed with a lot of patience, to listen to what our Arab neighbors have to say.We have heard much criticism and many charges. We can respond to each and every charge, to every misrepresentation of history and fact - and there were quite a few - and we can refute every contention. We, too, can cite morality, justice, and international legality in our favor. But is this what we have come here for? Such futile exchanges and rebuttals have been taking place during the last forty-three years at the U.N. and in countless international gatherings. They have not brought us one inch closer to mutual under standing and peace. This is precisely why we have persistently called for direct, face-to-face talks. Nevertheless, we came here out of goodwill, hoping there might be a change, a turn for the better in tone and content, that would lead us to a new and more promising chapter. And we have not given up this hope.Let me therefore make just a few remarks, not for the sake of polemics, but to shed light on a few facts.

Syria's representative wants us and the world to believe that his country is a model of freedom and protection of human rights, including those of the Jews. Such a statement stretches incredulity to infinite proportions. The ancient Jewish community in Syria has been exposed to cruel oppression, torture, and discrimination of the worst kind. Most of the Jews fled the country over the years and the few thousand left are living in perpetual terror. Anyone who tries to cross the border is incarcerated in prison, beaten and tortured, and his family exposed to punishment and constant fear. But not only are the Jews the victims of the Syrian regime. To this day, Syria is the home of a host of terrorist organizations that spread violence and death to all kinds of innocent targets, including civil aviation, and women and children of many nations. I could go on and recite a litany of facts that demonstrate the extent to which Syria merits the dubious honor of being one of the most oppressive, tyrannical regimes in the world. But this is not what we have come here for.To the Lebanese people, our neighbors to the north, we send a message of sympathy and under standing. They are suffering under the yoke of Syrian occupation and oppression and are denied even the capacity to cry out in protest. We bear no ill-will to the courageous and suffering Lebanese, and we join them in the hope that they will soon regain their independence and freedom. We have no designs on Lebanese territory, and in the context of a peace treaty and the removal of the Syrian presence, we can restore stability and security on the borders between our two countries.In many respects, we have a situation of de facto non-belligerency with the Kingdom of Jordan. We sincerely believe that a peace treaty with Jordan is achievable. In the context of such a treaty, we will determine together the secure and recognized boundaries, and lay the foundation for a relation ship of mutual cooperation and neighborly relations. Both countries stand to gain from a relation ship of peace and we hope to achieve it through direct, bilateral negotiations.I listened attentively to the statement of the Palestinian Arab spokesman in the joint Jordanian-Palestinian delegation. The Palestinian Arabs are our closest neighbors and in many respects, their lives are intertwined with ours. This is one more reason for the importance we attach to an accommodation with this community.

The Palestinian Arab spokesman made a valiant effort at recounting the sufferings of his people. But let me say, that twisting history and perversion of fact will not earn them the sympathy which they strive to acquire. Was it not Palestinians who slaughtered a major part of the Jewish community of Hebron, without any provocation? Was it not Palestinians who rejected every peace proposal since the beginning of the century and responded by violence? Was it not Palestinians who produced a leader who collaborated with the Nazis in the extermination of Jews in the Holocaust? Was it not the Palestinians who called their Arab brethren in 1948 to come and help them destroy the Jewish State? Was it not the Palestinians who rejoiced and danced on the roofs when Iraqi Scud missiles were falling on Tel Aviv? Have they forgotten that more Palestinians were killed by their own brethren in a few recent years, than in clashes with Israeli security forces? Even to this very day, under conditions which you describe as occupation, is it not a fact that any Jew who strays into an Arab village risks his life, but tens of thousands of Palestinian Arabs walk freely in every town and village in Israel and no one molests them? We have presented the Palestinians a fair proposal, one that offers them a chance to improve their lot immensely. I appeal to them to accept our proposal and join us in negotiations.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

We have come here to seek together the road that would lead us to peace and accommodation, rather than to engage in a match of charges and counter-charges. Peace is not just words or a signature on a piece of paper. Peace is a frame of mind and a set of actions that are the opposite of hostility, and create a climate of mutual trust, tolerance and respect.With an open heart, we call on the Arab leaders to take the courageous step and respond to our out stretched hand in peace. Yesterday, I extended an invitation to come to Israel for the first round of peace negotiations and begin a sincere exchange that would lead to agreement. We hope you will accept our invitation. We will readily reciprocate. I am sure I speak for every man, woman and child in Israel, who join me in the hope that, after all, this gathering will be registered in history as a turning point, away from hostility and forward to coexistence and peace.Thank you.

The Madrid Conference Closing Speeches November 1, 1991

The Madrid Conference Closing Speeches November 1, 1991

November 1, 1991

Secretary Baker, Foreign Minister Pankin, Your Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

We wish first to congratulate the co-sponsors for succeeding where so many have failed before. The fact of the Conference itself convening is no negligible feat, but a tribute to sheer persistence, tenacity, and hard work. For this, we extend our appreciation.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

For this historic Conference to succeed, requires, to borrow a literary phrase, a willing suspension of disbelief - the predisposition and ability to enter alien terrain where the signals and signposts are often unfamiliar and the topography uncharted. This solemn endeavor on which we are embarking here in Madrid demands of us a minimal level of sympathetic understanding in order to begin the process of engagement and communication. For this interdependent age demands the rapid evolution of a shared discourse that is capable of generating new and appropriate perceptions of the basis of which forward-looking attitudes may be formed and accurate road maps drawn.Failing this, time will not spare us and our peoples will hold us accountable. Thus, we have the task, rather the duty, of rising above static and hardset concepts, of discarding teleological arguments and regressive ideology, and of abandoning rigid and constricting positions. Such attitudes barricade the speaker behind obdurate and defensive stances, while antagonizing or locking out the audience.Eliciting instant responses through provocation and antagonism would, admittedly, generate energy, but such energy can only be short-lived and ultimately destructive. Energy with direction, real momentum, emerges from a responsible and responsive engagement between equals, using recognizable terms of reference regardless of the degree of disagreement.In all honesty, we, the Palestinian delegation, came here to present you with a challenge - to lay our humanity before you and to recognize yours, to transcend the confines of the past, and to set the tone for a peace process within the framework of mutuality, expansiveness, and acknowledgement. We deliberately refused to limit the options before us to one or to fall into the trap of reductive entrenchment with a rigid either-or argument. Ladies and Gentlemen, peace requires courage to make and perseverance to forge.In his opening speech, President Bush sent a strong message, not just to the participants, but to the world as a whole - a peace pledge with the dual signs of fairness and legitimacy as necessary components. We were gratified, for the Palestinian peace initiative is firmly grounded in these two principles. Most speeches which followed re affirmed them and sought to demonstrate serious ness of intent. The Israeli statement, however, remained the exception, imprisoned in its own anachronistic and antagonistic rhetoric, incapable of responding to the tone and implications of the occasion.But the days of domination, of manipulative politics are over, and the emergent realities of our con temporary world are consecrating the principles of moral politics and global harmony as the criteria and measures of value.We further find it incomprehensible how Israel can violate with impunity the integrity of the pro cess and the consensus of the participants. United Nations Security Council Resolution 242 and the principle of territory for peace constitute the terms of reference and the source of legal authority for the Conference and negotiations, as stated in the letters of invitation. The positive response of the Palestinian people was primarily in recognition and appreciation of this commitment. The essence of 242, as formulated in its own preamble, is the inadmissibility of acquisition of territory by war, thus containing within it an internal and binding definition which renders it incapable of being variously or subjectively interpreted or applied. We came here to realize its implementation, not to indulge in exegesis or semantics or to be party to its negation or extraction from the peace agenda. This is not only an Arab and Palestinian requirement; it is also a demand of the international community and a test of validation for the new era in global politics.

The same terms articulated in 242 apply to East Jerusalem, which is not only occupied territory, but also a universal symbol and a repository of cultural creativity, spiritual enrichment, and religious tolerance. That today an apartheid-like pass system bars many Palestinians from entering our holy city is both painful and provocative. The gates of Jerusalem must be open. Palestinian Jerusalem is the vehicle of our self-definition and the affirmation of our uninterrupted existence on our land.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The issue is land, and what is at stake here is the survival of the Palestinian people on what is left of our olive groves and orchards, our terraced hills and peaceful valleys, our ancestral homes, villages, and cities. International legitimacy demands the restoration of the illegally-occupied Arab and Palestinian lands to their rightful owners. Israel must recognize the concept of limits - political, legal, moral, and territorial - and must decide to join the community of nations by accepting the terms of international law and the will of the international community. No amount of circumlocution or self-deception can alter that fact.Security can never be obtained through the acquisition of other people's territory, and geography is not the criterion for security. The opposite is actually true. Retaining or expanding occupied territory is the one sure way of perpetuating hostility and resentment. We are offering the Israeli people a unique chance for genuine security through peace: only by solving the real grievances and underlying causes of instability and conflict can genuine and long-lasting stability and security be obtained.We, the people of Palestine, hereby offer the Israelis an alternative path to peace and security: abandon mutual fear and mistrust, approach us as equals within a two-state solution, and let us work for the development and prosperity of our region based on mutual benefit and well-being. We have already wasted enough time, energy, and resources locked in this violent embrace of mutual destruction and defensiveness. We urge you to take this opportunity and rise to meet the challenge of peace.Settlements on confiscated Palestinian land and the expropriation of our resources will surely sabotage the process launched by this Conference, for they are major obstacles to peace. They constitute a flagrant violation of Palestinian rights and the Fourth Geneva Convention. All settlement activity and confiscation of Palestinian land must stop, for these measures constitute the institutionalized plunder of our people's heritage and future.The Palestinians are a people with legitimate national rights. We are not the inhabitants of territories or an accident of history or an obstacle to Israel's expansionist plans, or an abstract demo graphic problem. You may wish to close your eyes to this fact, Mr. Shamir, but we are here in the sight of the world, before your very eyes, and we shall not be denied. In exile or under occupation, we are one people, united despite adversity, determined to exercise our right to self-determination and to establish an independent state, led by our own legitimate and acknowledged leadership. The question of all our refugees will be dealt with during the permanent status negotiations under the terms of United Nations Resolution 194.

We have already declared our acceptance of transitional phases as part of this process, provided they have the logic of internal coherence and inter connection, within a specified, limited time frame and without prejudicing the permanent status. During the transitional phase, Palestinians must have meaningful control over decisions affecting their lives and fate. During this phase, the immediate repatriation of the 1967 displaced persons and the reunion of separated families can be carried out.We have also expressed the need for protection and third party intervention in the course of bringing about a settlement under such conditions of disequilibrium between occupier and occupied. For peace, as a state of civilization between societies, real peace between peoples, cannot precede the solution of the problems which are at the core of the conflict. It is the solution which opens the door to peace, and not the other way around.On these grounds, we hereby publicly and solemnly call upon the co-sponsors of the Conference, directly or through the United Nations, to place the whole of the Occupied Palestinian Territories under their trusteeship pending a final settlement. The Palestinian people are willing to entrust you with the protection of their lives and lands until a fair and legitimate peace is achieved.They are the same people, our Palestinian people, who have celebrated the occasion of this Conference by offering olive branches to the Israeli occupation soldiers. Palestinian children were deco rating army tanks with this symbol of peace. Our Palestinian people under occupation and in exile were here with us during the past three days, in our minds and hearts, and it is their voice that you have heard.To the co-sponsors and to the international community that seeks the achievement of a just peace in the Middle East, you have given us a fair hearing, you cared enough to listen, and for that we thank you.

The Madrid Conference Closing Speeches November 1, 1991

The Madrid Conference Closing Speeches November 1, 1991

The Madrid Conference Closing Speeches November 1, 1991

The Madrid Conference Closing Speeches November 1, 1991

The Madrid Conference Closing Speeches November 1, 1991

November 1, 1991

Distinguished Colleagues, Ladies and Gentlemen,

Over the last eight months, many people in the region have exerted great efforts and contributed in many ways to make this Conference and negotiations possible. All of you in this hall fall into that category. But there are some who are not here now, individuals who have made essential contributions to the process, without which in my view this Conference would not have happened. In this regard, I want to pay tribute:To President Mubarak of Egypt, who was a confidant, advisor, friend, and advocate for this process from the very beginning.To King Fahd of Saudi Arabia, who demonstrated by word and deed that new opportunities for Arab-Israeli peace existed after the Gulf War, and who personified this new approach in the Arab world.To President Assad of Syria, whose assurance to me that Syria had made an historic choice and decision in favor of peace, and whose early commitment to this process, both proved to be vital.To King Hussein of Jordan, whose courage, leadership, and willingness to commit publicly and quickly in support of this process trans formed the dynamics in the region.To Prime Minister Shamir of Israel, whose steady determination and strong leadership proved essential in reaching agreement to convene this Conference and to launch direct bilateral negotiations for real peace between Israel and its neighbors.To Foreign Minister Levy of Israel, who was determined to develop an active and meaningful peace process and who worked creatively to overcome obstacles in our path.To President Hrawi of Lebanon, who has worked to re-establish central authority in his war-ravaged country, which is a necessary step toward peace in the region.To Palestinians with whom I met, like Faisal Husseini and Hanan Ashrawi, whose personal courage in the face of enormous pressures has created the possibility of a better life for Palestinians.

Even in a period of dramatic and far-reaching change around the world, this Conference stands apart. Fourteen days ago, President Bush and President Gorbachev invited Israel, the Arab states, and Palestinians to this Peace Conference and to direct negotiations that follow. In response to that invitation, Israel, Jordan, the Palestinians, Syria, and Lebanon agreed to attend the Conference and to participate in the direct negotiations. In addition, the European Community, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Tunisia, Morocco, Algeria, and Mauritania agreed to participate in this process.This Conference demonstrates vividly the end of the Cold War and the flowering of U.S.-Soviet partnership in resolving regional conflicts. Where we once competed, we now cooperate. Where there was once polarization, there is now coordination. What was once unthinkable - the United States and the Soviet Union co-sponsoring a process of peace in the Middle East - became a reality this week.Our work - making peace through negotiations - has just begun. As we look at the challenges ahead, it is worth noting and learning from what we have already accomplished.For decades, agreement on whether to negotiate eluded the parties. This weekend, direct, bilateral negotiations aimed at comprehensive, genuine peace will start.For decades, agreement on what to negotiate eluded the parties. This weekend, negotiations should begin on the accepted basis of United Nations Security Council Resolutions 242 and 338.For decades, agreement on how to negotiate eluded the parties. This weekend, negotiations will begin on two tracks and in phases; and in a few weeks, those parties who wish to participate will convene to organize multilateral negotiations on a wide range of issues that affect the well-being of all peoples in the region.

These are not mere platitudes. During these eight months of diplomacy, though the parties sometimes fell back on old slogans and outmoded code words, they also came to understand the need to engage concretely and pragmatically to resolve problems. I said often that the parties would probably stake out maximum positions, especially as they got closer to negotiations.This is not surprising, especially in a public forum. The key, however, is to get beyond the rhetoric and into the direct negotiations.A basic tenet of American thinking is that negotiations are the best way to resolve disputes and achieve peace. Negotiations do not guarantee peace. But without negotiations, there is no way to produce genuine peace and no mechanism to develop understandings that can endure. The United States is willing to be a catalytic force, an energizing force, and a driving force in the negotiating process. Our involvement in this pro cess will be rooted solidly in the core principles enunciated by President Bush last March. They will remain the cornerstone that guides our participation in the negotiating process.The U.S. is and will be an honest broker. We have our own positions and views on the peace pro cess, and we will not forego our right to state these. But, as an honest broker with experience - successful experience - in Middle East negotiations, we also know that our critical contribution will often be to exert quiet, behind-the-scenes influence and persuasion.Let no one mistake our role as an honest broker to mean that we will change longstanding U.S. pol icy positions; and let no one mistake our policy positions as undercutting our determination to help the parties reach fair and mutually acceptable solutions to problems. As President Bush and I have both said this week, it is not our policies that mat ter; it is those of the parties. They are the ones that must negotiate peace.This week, the parties provided insight into their thinking about a negotiated settlement. They outlined three broad requirements in the search for peace:First, we heard a yearning for peace - the wish of peoples in the region to live in a mutually satisfying relationship with neighbors, a relationship characterized by peace treaties, economic relations, cultural ties, and political dialogue.Second, we heard an emphasis on land - the desire of peoples in the region to exercise authority and political governance over territory they consider part of their national, political, historical, or religious patrimony.

Third, we heard a need for security - the requirement of people to live free of fear, and the obligation of governments to do their best to protect their citizens.

What the parties in fact said this week is that these core issues - land, peace, and security - are inseparable elements in the search for a comprehensive settlement.

The parties have made clear that peace by itself is unachievable without a territorial solution and security; that a territorial solution by itself will not resolve the conflict without there also being peace and security; and that security by itself is impossible to achieve without a territorial solution and peace. The process on which we are embarked can work only if all issues are put on the table, and if all issues are satisfactorily resolved.One key issue is the style of negotiations. Today, the Soviet Union and the United States are on the same side of the table - literally and figuratively - in striving for global peace and the resolution of regional conflicts. Today, and in the future, we will work together in pursuit of a Middle East settlement.The United States, at the highest levels, will remain intimately engaged in this process. We expect to be available to the parties throughout this process. The United States and the Soviet Union are prepared to participate directly in the negotiations themselves, with the consent of all parties.

We will do our part. But we cannot do your part as well. The United States and the Soviet Union will provide encouragement, advice, recommendations, proposals, and views to help the peace process. Sometimes, you will be satisfied with our views, sometimes frustrated. Sometimes, we will support your positions and sometimes not. Sometimes we will act quietly and behind the scenes, and some times we will make known our views and positions in public. None of this, however, will relieve you - the parties - of the obligation of making peace. If you won't do it, we certainly can't. As I have said from the beginning of this effort, we can not want peace more than you, the parties most directly affected by its absence.Parties in this process cannot reasonably be expected to operate outside their political environment; but they should be expected to educate, shape, guide, and lead politics and opinion. Leaders in the region have taken difficult and courageous decisions to get to this Conference and to negotiations. More difficult and more courageous decisions will be required to settle this conflict.Let me say a word about the venue of the bilateral negotiations. As you know, the invitation sent to the parties on October 18 contained the terms of reference for this peace process, terms of reference that had been meticulously negotiated and agreed. This invitation specified that direct, bilateral negotiations would begin four days after the opening of the Conference. But there was never agreement regarding the location for those bilateral negotiations.The parties have not yet been able to agree on where to hold these negotiations. It is the view of the co-sponsors that the direct, bilateral negotiations should start in Madrid as soon as possible. It is the intention of the co-sponsors to continue to consult with the parties with a view to fulfilling the requirements of the invitation on this subject.From the perspective of the co-sponsors, and indeed from the perspective of most of the rest of the world, it would be very difficult to understand how a party could now refuse to attend bilateral negotiations simply because of a disagreement over the site of those negotiations. Finally, I want to note that a meeting will take place in several weeks among those parties who wish to participate in multilateral negotiations to organize those negotiations. These talks will focus on issues of critical interest to many parties in the region. They will be a complement to the bilateral negotiations. I am pleased that the multilateral negotiations have already gained widespread sup port and interest both in and outside the Middle East.This week, many have focused on the need for steps that would build confidence and trust. The United States continues to believe that confidence-building measures are important for the process and for the parties themselves.

I want to be perfectly honest, standing here as I am before colleagues with whom I have spent many, many hours since last March. The unwillingness of the parties to take confidence-building steps has been disappointing. You have dealt successfully with formulas and positions. You have agreed on terms of reference that are fair and equitable. You have launched a process of negotiations that can succeed. But you have failed to deal adequately with the human dimension of the conflict. As I travelled through the region, I witnessed terrible scenes of human tragedy, suffering, and despair. Innocent civilians caught in the crossfire of a conflict they wish would end. Refugees and displaced persons wandering across the vast expanses of time. Mothers and fathers, afraid of the future that awaits their children. And children, being schooled in the lessons of animosity and conflict, rather than friendship and accommodation.Formulas, terms of reference, and negotiations are not enough. Support for a negotiating process will not be sustainable unless the human dimension is addressed by all parties. A way must be found to send signals of peace and reconciliation that affect the peoples of the region. Don't wait for the other side to start; each of you needs to get off the mark quickly. You should know best what is needed.Through negotiations and through these and other steps, you can demonstrate respect for the rights of others. You can express understanding of the fears of others. You can touch the people - the women, men, and children - who are the victims of the Arab-Israeli conflict. We can only succeed at the table if we find ways of reaching out to one another away from the table.The challenges have been great, and the obstacles have been many, on the road to peace. Your decisions over these eight months of intensive diplomacy have created a new baseline of realism and commitment to peace. This Conference has been vital in breaking down the barriers of communication, and in establishing for all to see that Arab and Israeli leaders can meet face to face.In closing, let me speak to each of you person ally and directly. For over four decades, the world waited for this week. Peace-loving peoples everywhere tried time and again to get you - the makers of this intractable conflict - to join together to discuss your differences. This week, here in Madrid, you finally have met and held such a meeting. This has been a start - a good start - an historic start that has broken old taboos - an important start that opens further opportunities. But it is only a start - and that's not enough. You must not let this start become an end.When you walk out these doors, you carry with you great responsibilities. You carry with you the responsibility to your peoples to seek peace. You carry with you the responsibility to the world to build a comprehensive and just peace. You carry with you the responsibility to yourselves to break with the past and pursue a new future.For if you do not seize this historic opportunity, no one will blame anyone outside your region.You now shoulder the destiny and challenge of making peace, as you enter direct negotiations with your neighbors. The continuation and success of this process is in your hands. The world still looks to each of you to make the choice for peace.

The Madrid Conference Closing Speeches November 1, 1991

November 1, 1991

Mr. Co-Chairmen,

I would like to take this opportunity in the first place to commend our Co-Chairmen in convening this historic opening Conference where we see all parties around the table for the first time, which anyhow is historical. I believe indeed that this is no more than a beginning, a very important beginning. Having listened to all the contributions, I indeed am convinced how much we need a step-by-step process accompanied by confidence-building measures from the very beginning.The greatest problem to overcome in the initial phase in the negotiating process, as far as I can see it, is overcoming mistrust and creating further solid foundations for meaningful negotiations in good faith. Many elements have been put on the table, many valuable incentives have been given by various delegations. Others have been accused of being too much withholding and looking too much to the past. We believe that bridges can be built and bridges have to be built.The European Community has very traditional and longstanding bonds with the Middle East and with all the parties alike. The European Community and its member states are not partisans in the favor of the one viewpoint or the other but are partisans for legality. We are partisans for peace including security and justice for all without exceptions. We will continue to stand ready to assist this cause for any party that calls on us and we will remain in close and constant consultation with the co-sponsors in order to see that we further the process by cohesive action and coherent action.

Mr. Co-Chairmen, the Middle East that finds peace with itself can be a blessing not only for its own people, not only for its own environment, but for the world as a whole. It has a lot to offer and it has a lot to gain. And we are firmly determined to help the Middle East to achieve this goal. And as I have indicated in the initial address the day before yesterday, the European Community is fully prepared not only for a constructive partnership but also for a concrete partnership. We feel that parallel to the bilateral negotiations also multilateral negotiations should be started up in due course; not at the expense of the political process but in parallel with the political process and emphasizing that all the parties are masters of their own decisions and can decide when results achieved in the multilateral process should be put into effect, but identifying the splendid opportunities that are there when peace is achieved. The possibilities of cooperation in the region and the contribution that the European Community can bring in concrete [form], we believe could be identified already at an early stage, thus giving an additional incentive to all the parties to reach a political solution which eventually will allow for peace but also for economic development and prosperity for all. I pledge on behalf of the European Community and its twelve member states a full assistance and readiness along the process for all those parties that so desire.Thank you very much.









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