Conclusions of The London Meeting On Supporting the Palestinian Authority, 1 March 2005
This document sets out the political vision expressed and supported by the participants at the London Meeting, the Palestinian Authority’s own plans for institutional renewal, and a set of clear commitments by the international community in support of the PA’s programme.
The London meeting takes place at a moment of promise and opportunity for Palestinians and Israelis. Its purpose is to rally the international community in support of the Palestinian Authority’s plans to build the institutions of a viable Palestinian state. In that way it can help to sustain the political process which is now being renewed.
Participants condemned the bomb attack in Tel Aviv on 25 February, and expressed their determination that terrorism should be brought to an end, and not allowed to sabotage the peace process. They welcomed President Abbas’s commitment to bring those responsible to justice.
Participants re-affirmed their commitment to achieving a resolution of this conflict through direct negotiations leading to the goal of two states – a safe and secure Israel and a sovereign, independent, viable, democratic and territorially contiguous Palestine, living side by side in peace and security. Participants also reaffirmed their commitment to achieve a just, comprehensive and lasting settlement consistent with the Roadmap and based on UN Security Council resolutions 242, 338, and 1515.
Participants noted the continuing significance of President Bush’s statement of June 2002. They also reaffirmed the importance, as noted in the Roadmap, of the initiative of Crown Prince Abdullah – endorsed by the Beirut Arab League Summit.
Participants urged all concerned to take forward this initiative.
Participants in the meeting reaffirmed their commitment to the Roadmap. They urged all parties to the conflict to respect and uphold the obligations set out there. The London Meeting will help the Palestinian Authority in this context.
Participants welcomed the important steps forward taken by both parties in recent weeks, including the important progress announced at the Summit in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, on 8 February. While participants noted that the situation on the ground remains fragile they underlined the importance of working to establish a virtuous cycle and the renewal of progress towards peace through the full implementation of the Roadmap.
The participants welcomed the sense of promise offered by a strengthened Palestinian Authority under a reinvigorated leadership. The participants also welcomed the Israeli disengagement plan as a step towards achieving the two-state vision envisaged by the Roadmap. They supported the position set out by the Quartet that withdrawal from Gaza should be full and complete and be undertaken in a manner consistent with the Road Map. The Quartet also urged both Israel and the Palestinian Authority to co-ordinate closely preparation and implementation of the withdrawal initiative. Participants reaffirmed that the disengagement plan should take place without prejudice to final status negotiations, and in accordance with international law.
The participants welcomed the meeting of Quartet Principals on 1 March. The participants reaffirmed the central role of the Quartet in carrying forward the Peace Process in direct contact with the two parties, and asked the Quartet to reflect the conclusions of the London meeting in future contacts with the two parties in co-operation with other major international players.
President Abbas outlined the Palestinian Authority’s plans for the strengthening of its effectiveness and capacity. These were welcomed by the participants.
A central aim of the London Meeting was to help the Palestinian Authority to strengthen Palestinian institutions, thereby providing a sound basis for building the institutions of a future Palestinian State. Participants noted the significant progress made by the Palestinian Authority. Further work to build a more effective security apparatus, better governance, and the strengthening of the Palestinian economy, with adequate and effectively targeted international support, should improve the capacity of the Palestinian Authority to deliver real benefits to the Palestinian people across the West Bank and Gaza, and to take over successfully the territories from which Israel withdraws.
The Palestinian Authority’s sincere commitment to a viable plan to meet the benchmarks of good government should open the way to donor governments providing renewed support in Palestine. It was noted that any support resulting from the meeting would be in accord with Palestinian priorities and that financial assistance would be in accord with the Palestinian Medium Term Development Plan. Participants noted that the Palestinian Authority has a number of urgent short term financing needs, and strongly encouraged the international community to help address them.
The participants in the London Meeting recognised that the implementation of the commitments made by the Palestinian Authority would constitute a major step in implementing its Roadmap commitments. At the same time participants urged and expect action by Israel in relation to its own Roadmap commitments.
The London Meeting supported and encouraged the set of steps outlined by the Palestinian Authority, and agreed steps for international support in the areas of: – Governance – Security – Economic Development
The meeting welcomed the intention of the Task Force on Palestinian Reform (TFPR) and the Ad-Hoc Liaison Committee (AHLC) to establish follow-up mechanisms to give greater impetus to their activities in the areas of governance and economic development. The US will chair a steering group on security.
Participants committed to follow up in all three areas of governance, security and economic development, specifically:
i. To review and publicise progress made by the Palestinian Authority against the vision set out at the London meeting and on previous occasions.
ii. To mobilise international assistance for the PA’s efforts, particularly with reference to short-term priorities, as set out at the London meeting and in response to further developments.
Participants noted that Palestinian Authority action in certain areas required the co-operation of and facilitation by Israel. In particular, as the AHLC has noted, the revival of the Palestinian economy will depend on a significant dismantling of the system of closures and other restrictions on the movement of people and goods imposed by Israel. The follow up mechanisms will liaise with the Israeli Government, to help ensure a climate conducive (in both the long and short terms) to strengthening of the Palestinian Authority, taking into account Palestinian priorities and Israeli security needs. These mechanisms, and all international support, should be fully consistent with international law. This would include indicators, or “benchmarks”, on the conditions for economic development to be developed by the World Bank in consultation with all relevant parties.
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