Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson met with President Reuven Rivlin today, who passed on an invitation for our Royal family to visit Israel. The Foreign Secretary was due to meet both Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas in Ramallah as well as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem in his first working visit since taking over the top job.He met Israeli President Reuven Rivlin, earlier in the day and was also to hold talks with Palestinian foreign minister Riyad al-Malki. Mr Johnson is also set to meet anti-settlement NGO Peace Now.
New President Donald Trump has seemed ambivalent about the creation of a Palestinian state – and offered only soft criticism of Israeli settlements, a red hot issue. The Times of Israel said that in Jerusalem, our Foreign Secretary defined ‘illegal settlements’ as obstacles to ‘peace and progress,’ and said the US is also ‘anxious’ about them, referencing Rex Tillerson.
Above, Boris was about to hold talks with Palestinian foreign minister Riyad al-Malki. Earlier this week, in preparation for visit to Russia, probably next month, Boris said ” Russia was “up to all sorts of no good” just days after accepting an invitation to Moscow.
And he made references to “what happened in Montenegro” when slamming Russia for “undermining countries” in the Western Balkans.
However, no positive change for peace ever occurred by mouthing platitudes. Straight talking is the only way forward, in situations that have been deadlocked for too long.