SDE BOKER, Israel – For many Palestinians, the timing of the summit in Israel gives the impression that they have been abandoned by some parts of the Arab world.
Sunday’s two – day meeting marks the 20th anniversary of the Arab Peace Initiative, which was ratified by all members of the Arab League in 2002, pledging a truce with Israel in exchange for the creation of a Palestinian state.
Two decades later, the attendance of several Arab League members at the summit in Israel shows just how far that unity has diminished. Of the five countries invited to the ceremony, only Jordan declined. The King of Jordan, Abdullah II, made the pledge on Monday in the western city of Ramallah with Mahmoud Abbas, the head of the Palestinian Authority.
Support for the Palestinians is high among the Arab population. But some Arab leaders now seem to prioritize the economic and security interests of their countries over the issue of the Palestinians. It is divided between the West Bank and Gaza – Having been hostile for many years, he was not in a position to mount a united impulse for sovereignty.
“Israel has long sought to ignore its occupation and its apartheid regime in the world, and now these other states seem to be working with it,” said Diana Putu, a Palestinian analyst and former lawyer for the Palestine Liberation Organization. “This shows that we have always been right – they work with Israel for their limited security interests, not for the Palestinians. These regimes are not friendly to the Palestinians and should not be viewed as such.
As the summit unfolded, the Israeli Defense Ministry announced that it would allow another 8,000 Palestinians to work in Gaza, almost doubling the current number. But nothing has been said about the new peace talks.
The meeting in Israel also highlights the limitations of the ongoing campaign of Palestinians and rights groups. Turned Israel into a racist country In a universal sense. Israel vehemently denies allegations of racism.
If this statement had helped to eliminate Israel from the global rights community, the summit would have shown how Israel’s legitimacy in the Arab world is growing at the same time.
The summit was strongly condemned by Palestinian Islamist groups, including Hamas, a militant group with practical power in the Gaza Strip. Another militant group, Islamic Jihad, carried out a terrorist attack in northern Israel on Sunday night in retaliation for the summit, a Palestinian television channel reported.
The Palestinian Authority issued an oblique statement that did not directly refer to the summit, but indirectly criticized its participants for forming a “new security alliance that avoids the Palestinian cause”, even as Israel expands its Jewish settlements in the West Bank.
Mkhaimar Abusada, a Gaza-based professor of political science, said that despite all the controversy surrounding the summit, Israel still needs to return to the negotiating table with the Palestinians.
“Ultimately, they need to realize that they have to make peace with the Palestinians, not with other countries,” he said.
But only a handful of Palestinian workers at the hotel where the summit took place were Palestinians close to negotiations.
“You know how I feel about being a Palestinian at this summit,” said Forres Organ, a 42-year-old cleaner who travels to the hotel daily from the occupied West Bank.
“We are accustomed to this kind of treatment from others,” he added.
Rawan Sheikh Ahmed Report contributed by Haifa, Israel; And Laura Jacks From Sde Boker.