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Peek at an agreement



President George W. Bush has given Israel and the Palestinian Authority until the end of his term to reach an agreement on the creation of a viable democratic Palestinian state that will live peace with Israel. The assumption is that the sides will negotiate in secret and will reach a declaration of principles which will then be brought to the electorate in Israel and Palestine - either through full elections or through referenda.

The agreement will set down principles for permanent status and for the end of the conflict and a finality of all claims. The implementation of the declaration of principles will be based first on the full implementation of phase 1 of the road map (Palestinians dismantling the infrastructure of terrorism and Israel freezing all settlements and redeploying to the position held in September 2000), and then on the negotiations of a detailed agreement. Gaza is another issue that will have to be dealt with before an agreement could be implemented there.

It would safe to state that the parameters of the Declaration of Principles are more or less known. In the end it will look something like the following:

Declaration of Principles on Permanent Status Peace - Preamble The Government of the State of Israel and the P.L.O., the sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people, reaffirm that it is time to put an end to decades of confrontation and conflict, recognize their mutual legitimate and political rights, and strive to live in peaceful coexistence and mutual dignity and security and achieve a just, lasting and comprehensive peace settlement and historic reconciliation based on the "two-states for two peoples" solution. The two sides fully recognize that each state has the right to define its own identity which will be respected by both sides.

This Declaration of Principles relates to the establishment of peace between the State of Israel and the future State of Palestine, in all of its territories, including the Gaza Strip. In recognition of the current political realities in the Gaza Strip, the implementation of this Declaration and the future treaty of peace will be undertaken in Gaza only once the Palestinian Authority, or future Government of the State of Palestine has full control over the Gaza Strip or at such a time that the Governing authority in Gaza accepts the international conditions of recognition of Israel, adherence to all agreements (including this and future agreements) and a full renunciation of violence and terrorism.

ARTICLE I - AIM OF THE AGREEMENT OF PRINCIPLES ON PERMANENT STATUS. The aim of this Declaration of Principles is to provide a framework for negotiations on the permanent status agreement of peace and end of conflict between the State of Israel and the State of Palestine that will be established based on these principles. This Declaration of Principles will relate to all of the permanent status issues detailed in the DOP of September 1993 including: Jerusalem, refugees, settlements, security arrangements, borders, relations and cooperation with other neighbors, and other issues of common interest.

ARTICLE II - PALESTINIAN STATEHOOD. The State of Palestine will be established on the territories agreed to by the parties based on the principle of 100% of the size of the land area of the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem with agreed upon border modifications, agreed-upon territorial exchange in accordance with the vital needs of both sides, including security, territorial contiguity, and demographic considerations.

The Palestinian State will have a connection between its two geographic areas, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. The Palestinian State will have full control over its external borders in accordance with security arrangements that will be agreed upon.

ARTICLE III - JERUSALEM. The State of Israel and the State of Palestine will both establish their capitals in Jerusalem. The delineation of borders and the future status of the Holy Places, and the mechanisms for governing Jerusalem will be the focus of the detailed permanent status negotiations on Jerusalem. The principle guiding the negotiations on the delineation of borders in Jerusalem will be: "What is Arab to the Palestinians, what is Jewish to Israel." The two sides are committed to guaranteeing that freedom of religion and full access to all holy sites will be guaranteed to all.

ARTICLE IV - REFUGEES. In line with the Arab League Peace Initiative, both parties accept the principle of a just solution to the Palestinian Refugee problem to be agreed upon in consideration of UN General Assembly Resolution 194.

Both sides recognize that the resolution to the refugee problem must also be in accordance with the principle of two-states for two peoples taking into account the demographic realities and needs of both States. On that basis, Israel acknowledges that it shares responsibility with other parties for the emergence of refugees' plight and acknowledges their suffering since 1948 with sorrow.

All Palestinian refugees will be eligible to receive immediate citizenship in the State of Palestine based on a plan of immigration and settlement to be determined by the State of Palestine.

The international community, Israel, and the Palestinian State will establish and contribute to an International Fund for Palestinian Refugees that will compensate all Palestinian refugees in recognition of years of their suffering.

The international fund will also offer to compensate Palestinian refugees willing to remain in their present country of residence, or who wish to immigrate to third countries, in accordance with agreements of those third countries.

The International Fund for Palestinian Refugees will engage in a robust international effort to construct new housing for Palestinian refugees in the State of Palestine including the establishment of new cities in the West Bank.

All Palestinian refugees will be able to present property loss claims to an international commission that will work alongside of the International Fund for Palestinian Refugees. Compensation for lost property will be made available by the fund in the form of alternative new housing in the State of Palestine and/or cash payments.

Those Palestinian refugees wishing to seek family reunification with direct family members who are citizens of the State of Israel, may apply to the Israeli authorities for doing so. In this context the State of Israel agrees to accept up to 50,000 family reunification requests over a 10 year period.

ARTICLE V - SECURITY. The Palestinian State will be have a limited military force and a robust police force focusing on the protection of Palestinian democracy, the protection of national institutions, law and order, and internal security. The State of Israel and the State of Palestine will continue to coordinate and to improve their mutual security efforts to eliminate all forms of violence directed against the establishment of full peace. The parties will further work out detailed arrangements to provide for the security and integrity of the peoples of both States.

An international peacekeeping force will be deployed in the State of Palestine in the West Bank and Gaza that will assist in the process of establishing full security for both States. An international presence will also be stationed at the external borders of the Palestinian state that will supervise and monitor the implementation of the security dimensions of the detailed agreements.

ARTICLE VI - ECONOMIC RELATIONS. Both sides recognize the importance of close economic cooperation between them and will work to foster economic development for the benefits of both peoples. Both sides will work to fully implement the Agreements on Movement and Access.

Within the negotiations on permanent status, both sides will undertake the evaluation of the Paris Protocol on the joint Customs envelope and will decide if to continue and to improve the protocol or to reach an alternative framework of economic and trade relations. Until the time that a new agreement on economic relations is reached, both parties will work to fully implement the Paris Protocol in all of its aspects.

ARTICLE VII - WATER and ENVIRONMENT. Based on the Oslo II agreement in which Israel recognized Palestine's water rights, both sides agree to immediately increase the allocation of water to Palestine by 20% until a new detailed water agreement is reached. The new water agreement in the full permanent status agreement will be based on the International recognized principle of equitable water rights and allocations. Both sides will work together for advancing infrastructure and development projects that will increase the amount of water available by all means including desalination, waster water treatment, repair of water networks, etc.

Both sides undertake to work immediately on the advancement of environmental infrastructure projects that will eliminate damage to the environment, especially those which have a cross-boundary nature.

ARTICLE VIII - CREATING A CULTURE OF PEACE, EDUCATION FOR PEACE AND FIGHTING AGAINST INCITEMENT. With the signing of this Declaration of Principles the two sides undertake to work in partnership in a decisive way to foster a culture of peace including the undertaking of curricula review and modification of text books and the inclusion of education for peace within the schools systems of both sides. The two sides also agree to make a concerted and decisive effort to eliminate all forms of incitement against the other sides in the public arena and in the media.

ARTICLE IX - PEOPLE TO PEOPLE PEACE MAKING. Both sides make a full commitment to advance comprehensive programs for people-to-people peacemaking activities at all levels of both societies. The Governments of both sides declare their undertaking to provide full legitimacy for these activities and to allocate budgets for advancing them. The two sides call upon the international community to support the people-to-people peace making efforts with international donor support.

ARTICLE X - THE ESTABLISHMENT OF MINISTRIES OF PEACE (This is my own addition and is not yet part of the standard thinking and consciousness on the peace agreement.) Both sides undertake to establish a Ministry of Peace which will be the primary governmental body responsible for implementing the non-military related aspects of this Declaration of Principles and the subsequent full peace treaty. The Minister of Peace in both states will have the authority to coordinate and to advance programs of cooperation and mutual benefit with the aim of fostering a culture of peace in both States in accordance with this declaration of Principles and the subsequent peace treaty.

ARTICLE XI - TIME LINE AND IMPLEMENTATION BENCHMARKS. The parties agree to complete the negotiations for a full permanent status agreement within one year. The agreement will include a timetable for implementation of the agreement. The parties will also agree to specific performance related benchmarks to ensure the full implementation of the agreement.

The parties agree that during the period of time that the negotiations for a full permanent status agreement are being conducted, both sides will in good faith implement all of their previous commitments undertaken in Phase I of the road map for peace.

ARTICLE XII - MONITORING AND VERIFICATION AND DISPUTE RESOLUTION. The parties agree that a mechanism for third party monitoring and verification of implementation be included in the full permanent status negotiations. The agreed upon mechanism will also provide for negotiation, mediation and if need arbitration of disputes concerning the implementation of the agreement.

ARTICLE XIII - END OF CONFLICT. Upon the full implementation of these principles, all claims on both sides and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict will end.


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