Peace gets chance at last

THERE can be no doubt that this week's announcement by Israeli president Benjamin Netanyahu that his country was ready to live with the possibility of a Palestine state is a significant move towards ending conflict in the Holy Land.

THERE can be no doubt that this week's announcement by Israeli president Benjamin Netanyahu that his country was ready to live with the possibility of a Palestine state is a significant move towards ending conflict in the Holy Land.

There has never been a doubt that lasting peace in the Middle East lies in the warring parties accepting that the necessity of a two-state solution with a viable Palestine living side-by-side with an Israel whose security is guaranteed by its neighbours.

The bellicose talk that has been all the rage since the founding of Israel in 1948 has only benefitted graves happy to swallow bodies of the victims of sectarian violence ever since.

We know that it is too early to start celebrating.

Cynics and realists alike will point to Camp David in 2000 as a reminder not to count our chickens before they are hatched.

Still, for an Israeli Prime Minister to get round to saying that he is ready to accept a Palestinian state and then for an ultra-nationalist Foreign Minister Avigidor Lieberman to say that they are ready for talks is encouraging.

But it is important for both paries to consider removing conditions for the talks to start.

Though there are many wars across the world, some of which we never get to hear about, peace in the Holy Land will send a message of hope to all humanity.

If the Israelis and the Palestinians can live together in peace, then all other things in international relations must be possible.

X