Israeli Ambassador to the United States Michael Oren participated in an interview with Foreign Policy in which he explained the potential repercussions of a unilaterally-declared Palestinian state. Foreign Policy reported:
‘We have a lot of agreements with the Palestinian Authority, we have no agreements with a “Government of Palestine,”’ Israel’s ambassador to the United States, Michael Oren, told The Cable in an exclusive interview on Tuesday. ‘It’s just a fact, we have no agreements with a “Government of Palestine.” It puts us in a different realm.’
Oren said that agreements covering all sorts of fields, such as import-export, water sharing, and Israel-Palestinian security forces cooperation, would become invalid if the Palestinians declare statehood unilaterally, based on a vote at the U.N.—rather than by negotiating statehood with the government of Israel via the stalled peace process.
‘It’s not just our agreements with the Palestinian Authority, it’s America’s agreements with the Palestinian Authority (that are at risk),’ Oren said. ‘America is a cosignatory to the Oslo Accord and this would seriously undermine it…. Unilateral steps would have legal, economic, and political ramifications for us and for America as a cosignatory.’
While reviewing the possible ramifications, Oren clearly stated that President Barack Obama and his administration understand the seriousness of the situation and are working with Israel toward “similar goals”:
Oren said that the U.S. and Israeli governments are coordinating on the issue in a ‘daily and intensive manner’ and ‘we see very much eye to eye.’
In fact, the Obama administration has said often that it opposes the Palestinian drive for a U.N. vote on statehood and sees no alternative to direct negotiations. The question is whether the Obama administration is doing everything it can to convince other countries not to support the U.N. vote.
‘I think they understand what needs to be done,’ Oren said. ‘We’re working for similar goals.’
Click here to read more from Oren’s interview.
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