France 'worried' by Trump's position on Israel

French Foreign Minister unsure over US position regarding Israeli-Arab conflict, calls recent statements 'worrying'.

Contact Editor
David Rosenberg,

Jean-Marc Ayrault
Jean-Marc Ayrault
Reuters

The French government says comments by President Donald Trump leaving the door open to other paths to peace besides the two-state solution are “worrying”.

French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault met with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Thursday, a day after Trump held a joint press conference with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.

Ayrault said he sought “clarity” regarding the US position on Israeli-Arab negotiations following Trump’s comments on Wednesday in which he suggested he would be willing to pursue an agreement under any framework favored by the parties – including a one-state solution.

"I'm looking at two-state and one-state, and I like the one that both parties like,” said Trump. “I'm very happy with the one that both parties like. I can live with either one."

The Foreign Minister said Tillerson explained the Trump administration’s view regarding negotiations, but left Ayrault both “confused” and worried.

"I have got a bit more clarity even if on the Israeli-Palestinian issue it remains very confusing and concerning and I made a point of telling him that," Ayrault said

"I wanted to remind him after the meeting between Donald Trump and Netanyahu that in France's view there are no other options other than the perspective of a two-state solution and that the other option which Mr. Tillerson brought up was not realistic, fair or balanced."

Ayrault did not specify which other option Tillerson raised during their meeting.

"I found that there was a bit more precision even if I found that on the Israeli-Palestinian dossier it was very confused and worrying," Ayrault continued.