British Foreign Sec. to visit Israel, press for peace with Palestinian Authority

British Foreign Sec.Dominic Raab to visit Israel, press for peace with Palestinian Authority.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Dominic Raab
Dominic Raab

In light of the normalization of relations between the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Israel and the suspension of the annexation of Judea and Samaria, British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab will visit Israel, meeting with Israeli and Palestinian Authority officials this week.

In the meeting, Raab will press for renewed dialogue and reinforce the UK's commitment to preventing annexation and pursuing a negotiated two-state solution.

Raab will also use his first official trip to Israel to emphasize the UK’s commitment to Israel’s security and to the countries' strong and enduring relationship.

The visit follows the announcement that the UAE and Israel would normalize relations; a move the UK welcomed as a much-needed boost for peace in the region.

Israel also announced earlier this month that it would suspend plans to annex parts of the West Bank. The UK had been calling for this for some time, with the Prime Minister warning that annexation would jeopardise the progress that Israel has made in improving relations with the Arab and Muslim world.

The UK has consistently encouraged a solution that allows justice and security for both Israelis and Palestinians.

Ahead of his visit, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said: "The UK remains committed to Israel’s security and stability, and the recent normalization of relations between Israel and the UAE was a historic moment for the region."

"Israel's suspension of annexation is an important step towards a more peaceful Middle East. It is now time for both sides to come together and engage in the dialogue that's needed to deliver the negotiated two-state solution that can secure lasting peace, security and justice for both Israelis and Palestinians."

During his visit, Raab will meet his counterpart, Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi (Blue and White) after which he will hold bilateral talks with Minister of Defense and Alternate Prime Minister Benny Gantz (Blue and White), followed by Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu. Raab will reiterate the UK's commitment to Israeli security and welcome the recent suspension of annexation plans.

Raab will then meet with Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas In Ramallah, as well as PA leader Mohammed Shtayyeh. He will reaffirm the UK's opposition to annexation, and call on the PA to resume cooperation with Israel and pursue direct negotiations, as a step towards a negotiated two-state solution and a viable, sovereign Palestinian state.

"The UK does not underestimate the challenges to reaching a negotiated two-state solution, but the Foreign Secretary's visit will affirm Britain's willingness to help facilitate a return to Israeli-Palestinian dialogue as a step towards achieving a lasting, peaceful solution for both peoples," an official statement read.