IPCRI and Swedish Christian Social Democrats
Israeli-Palestinian Working Group on the Road Map
Improving the Environment for the Implementation of Phase I of the Road Map – Recommendations
The Road Map for Peace remains the only accepted political process for moving from a state of violence towards peace between Israel and the Palestinian Authority. The Road Map for Peace has been endorsed and accepted by the Government of Israel, the Palestinian Authority, and the Quartet led by the United States. In our assessment it is unlikely that it will be possible to move into Phase II until after the US elections. During the full year ahead of us every effort should be utilized to fully implement Phase I of the Road Map.
Specific Recommendations for the Palestinian Authority
1. We recommend that once a new Government is established for the Palestinian Authority, it should re-issue an unequivocal declaration in support of the Road Map, against all forms of violence, and a commitment to fully implement all of its obligations and commitments under the Road Map including a determination to wage war on terror as an expression that the Rule of Law will be fully adopted in Palestine and that no forces, other than those directly under the control of the Palestinian Authority, will be allowed to exist and function within the Palestinian Territories.
2. We recommend that the Palestinian Authority adopt a Program of action that will be implemented over 3 distinct stages within Phase I of the Road Map:
· The First stage, lasting about 3 months includes intensive activity, measures, steps taken by the Palestinian security apparatus in fully implementing the Tenet and Zinni work plans.
· The second stage – security institution rebuilding, upgrading and enhancing security cooperation between the Palestinian and Israeli security apparatuses. This stage will begin in parallel with the 1st stage and will continue throughout Phase I of the Road Map.
· The third stage – at the end of six months the IDF will begin the redeployment of Israeli forces, vacating areas in A&B and accommodate the beginning of the preparations for Palestinian elections.
2. The lines of communication between Palestinian and Israeli political and security personnel should be expanded and upgraded in their level. This should commence immediately from the offices of the two Prime Ministers and lead to the establishment of “hotline” communication facilities from the top to the bottom, at field levels.
3. Crisis contingencies – in the event of continued suicide bombings against Israeli civilians, accelerated and expanded coordinated security actions might be required to be taken by the Palestinian Security. In that event, some “shock absorbers” would be needed for the Palestinian Authority as there would be political justification on the Palestinian side for more drastic action against the perpetrators and their infrastructure. This would require direct and real-time communications between the Israeli and the Palestinian security apparatuses.
Specific Recommendations for the GOI
1. Taking positive note of the new unequivocal declaration of the new Palestinian Authority Government, we recommend that the GOI once again reiterate its full support to the Road Map and its commitment to lead a process towards peaceful relations with the Palestinian people through the full implementation of all the obligations and commitments under the Road Map.
2. Controversial issues such as the fence
Noting that US-Israel consultations have resulted in some changes in the route of the fence; and conducive to creating a more positive environment, we recommend that the GOI issue a binding statement that the fence does not prejudice the final outcome of the permanent status borders. We further recommend that a similar binding statement should be issued by the Quartet.
2. We recommend that in the building of the fence, the GOI facilitate the opening of the “agricultural gates” that aim to enable the movement of those who are supposed to and allowed to move. We recommend that the GOI implement measures that are acceptable and possible that will mitigate problems created by the fence to people who live adjacent to it.
3. We recommend that the GOI reconsider the possibility of re-engaging with Yasser Arafat in accordance with progress made in the implementation of the Road Map.
Specific Recommendations for Both Sides
1. Discrete contacts and communication between members of the GOI with the new Palestinian cabinet members should take place for the purpose of arranging and encouraging ongoing contacts between them.
2. The role of the Palestinian National Security Council is important and the full support of the NSC of the Road Map is essential. A line of direct communication between the NSC and the Israeli security apparatus should be established.
3. Incitement – The two sides should immediately re-adopt and implement the recommendations and definitions that were drawn up by the Joint Ant-Incitement Committee. Both sides should recommit themselves to creating a positive environment by fighting incitement to violence and terrorism and to address claims that are brought up on this issue from both sides.
Specific Recommendations to the Quartet
1. It is essential for the United States to fully re-engage and for robust monitoring and verification apparatuses to be on-the-ground immediately. Furthermore, we recommend that the United States enhance its role in facilitation and implementation assistance.
2. We recommend that a meeting of the Principals of the Quartet be convened as soon as possible with the aim of agreeing on a work plan for additional assisting roles in monitoring, verification, and implementation assistance, for other third parties based on the work plan that was proposed by the working groups of the Quartet.
Recommendations to All Parties
We recommend investigating the possibility that the implementation of the further phases of the Road Map might be possible in a difference sequence and timing if the implementation of Phase I will be successful.