Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald


Israeli leader examines recent talks

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One week after Israeli and Palestinian leaders started
meeting in efforts to promote peace in the Middle East, a diplomat from Israel
spoke at the University of Wisconsin Monday to update students on negotiations.

Andy David, the deputy consul general of Israel to the
Midwest, said the U.S. government-sponsored summit in Annapolis, Md., was an
important step toward re-igniting the peace process.


"Annapolis was not a peace conference, that was not the
purpose. It was an attempt to reunite the peace process," David said. "If you
judge it like that, I think Annapolis was a success. By the fact that it
happened and by the fact that now there's a mechanism on how to continue to negotiate

The most important measure taken, he said, was the
establishment of a two-state solution to solve the conflict between Israelis
and Palestinians, "one state of Israel for the Jewish people, and one Arab
state for the Palestinian."

"It's a great thing that people are getting together and
saying, 'Maybe we're not going to decide exactly what's going to happen to
reach peace, but this is something that we're acknowledging is crucial and
needs to happen,'" said Jessica Cherry, chair of the UW chapter of
Madison-Israel Public Affairs Committee, which organized the event. "It's kind
of a ray of hope that it is going to happen and it's approaching, hopefully."

MadPAC Political Affairs Coordinator Sheerlie Ryngler said
though many people were disappointed not much came out of the peace summit, the
real objective of the conference was to establish a peace dialogue.

"There are a lot of different forces and different interests
going into why people attended and what were their intentions and purposes, and
what they wanted to come out with from Annapolis," Ryngler said. "But in the
end it has to be noticed that it's very complicated and this is a stepping-stone
in the right direction. I think that people should be excited that peace talks
have started again."

This process, Ryngler added, needs to take into
consideration that there is a new political will because demographics in the
Middle East have changed.

"For many years it was a context that Middle East was Arabs,
and not mostly Arabs and Muslims," David said. "But yes, there are Christians
in the Middle East [and] there are Jews. Most of the Middle East is Arab, but
they do not set the Middle Eastern agenda anymore."

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