Recent developments in the Middle East underline the need for urgency in resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict: the Foreign Secretary has made clear that there is no more urgent foreign policy in 2013 than restarting Israeli-Palestinian talks and making substantive progress towards the two-state solution.
We are concerned by developments that threaten the viability of the two-state solution, including the construction of settlements on occupied land in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.
The conflict matters to British national security, and we will take every opportunity to help promote peace. Our goal is a secure and universally recognised Israel living alongside a sovereign and viable Palestinian state, based on the borders of 1967, with Jerusalem the future capital of both states, and a just, fair and realistic settlement for refugees.
We believe there is a need for the United States, supported by European, Arab and other nations, to lead an effort to revive the peace process. We are making this case with the US, Israeli and Palestinian authorities, and make every effort to mobilise the European Union and Arab states behind decisive moves for peace.
The British government is clear that, ultimately, the way to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is through direct negotiations between the parties. We continue to call on both sides to show the strong leadership needed to achieve peace, to take the necessary steps to build trust and to work towards the resumption of negotiations without preconditions.
We are supporting Israel and the Palestinians in making steps towards peace, including through Conflict Pool funded project activity.