NEW YORK | Chief Palestinian negotiator Dr. Sa’eb Erekat engaged in discussions with 80 supporters, including Seeds, on September 24. Erekat, who is in New York for the opening of the United Nations General Assembly, discussed the stalemated Israeli-Palestinian peace process and how to move it forward.
“I don’t think it’s God’s will or Allah’s will for us to remain in conflict,” he said.
Erekat stressed how close past rounds of negotiations had come to yielding an Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement and reiterated Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’ call for a resumption of talks based on the 1967 borders.
He spoke about his children and grandchildren and his desire for them to grow up in a different and better world, in a secure, peaceful, and independent Palestinian state.
The Palestinian bid for statehood at the United Nations, he argued, was an affirmation of the two-state solution–an independent sovereign Palestinian state next to an independent Israeli state–rather than an attempt to force a one-state solution.
An Israeli Seed who had attended the Seeds of Peace International Camp with Erekat’s daughter was among the audience members who engaged Erekat in discussion.
Erekat related the story about how his daughter received worried phone calls from Israeli Seeds after Jericho was hit by flooding, while he received no similar calls from his Israeli counterparts.
When asked what young people could do to further peace, he noted that Seeds are making a difference.
“Now, because of the work of your organization, there is a new kind of culture blooming.”
BREAKFAST WITH DR. SA’EB EREKAT