Jordan’s King Abdullah urged Israel’s opposition leader on Monday to make sure his country’s government does not quit negotiations until “peace is achieved” warning that the “chance for peace will not be repeated”.
Quoting from a statement issued by the office of Israeli opposition leader Isaac ‘Bougie’ Herzog, that came following a meeting Herzog had with the King in Amman, the Times of Israel reports that Abdullah said: “This is a one-time opportunity to reach an agreement in the Middle East, and we must find the formula that doesn’t blow up the negotiations”.
Other than confirming a meeting took place, King Abdullah’s palace office offered no details on the contents of the meeting nor its outcome.
The meeting was scheduled at Herzog’s request, to allow a senior Israeli official to apologize for the March shooting of Jordanian judge Raed Zeiter, who was killled when he allegedly tried to knife Israeli border guards searching his bus as part of a routine security check at the Allenby bridge border crossing. The episode is being investigated by both Israeli and Jordanian authorities.
During a visit to Washington in April 2010, King Abdullah warned that if negotiations, then underway between Israel and Palestinian leaders, failed to result in a comprehensive peace agreement, the only result would be that ‘conflict would erupt’.
A little more than a year later, in June 2011, King Abdullah warned the Washington Post that if U.S. and other international efforts to “rekindle Middle East peace talks” did not succeed the failure would “cause the outbreak of a new armed uprising in the Palestinian territories.”
In January 2013, King Abdullah warned that the chances of reaching a two state solution would be “firmly shut” by the end of that year.
Last week, King Abdullah hosted a four-hour meeting between U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas that discussed this latest round of talks which are set to expire on April 29. It was at that meeting that Abbas told Kerry that he would never agree to recognize Israel as a Jewish state.