J Street Responds to Middle East Quartet’s Washington Meeting

April 11th, 2012

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE April 11, 2012 CONTACT: Jessica Rosenblum, J Street, Jessica@jstreet.org, (202) 670-5397 WASHINGTON — J Street President Jeremy Ben-Ami issued the following response to the statement by the Middle East Quartet at the close of its meeting today in Washington. “Following the Quartet’s reiteration today of its standard call on the parties to return to ‘direct negotiations,’ J Street urges the Quartet to consider a shift in strategy. We believe that the international community – led by the United States and the Quartet – needs to take a far more active role if there is to be a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The status quo is unsustainable and a passive posture by the world's leaders only paves the way toward further crisis and continuing conflict in the not-too-distant future. It is readily apparent that, left to talk by themselves, the Palestinians and Israelis are not going to be able to move toward a resolution they both say they want. As early as next week, the sides are anticipated to exchange letters that will undoubtedly demonstrate how far apart they are and again make clear their inability to figure out how to get out of the starting blocks without help. A Quartet posture that continues to rely exclusively on simply getting the parties to talk is likely to lead to recriminations and further unilateral moves. Without real progress on the diplomatic front, the coming year is likely to bring a new Palestinian appeal to the UN General Assembly for recognition as a non-member state, consideration of dismantling the Palestinian Authority and of course ever-greater Israeli settlement expansion – all of which move us further from achieving a negotiated two-state solution.”