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Press Release
Contact Information: Hussein Ibish
June 11, 2009 - 12:00am

Washington, DC, June 8 -- Dr. Ziad Asali, President of the American Task Force on Palestine (ATFP), joined a panel discussion on “Obama and the Two-State Solution: An Israeli, Palestinian, and Egyptian Perspective” at the Woodrow Wilson Center on June 8, 2009. The panel was moderated by Dr. Aaron David Miller, a Public Policy Scholar at the Woodrow Wilson Institute and also included included Dr. Martin Kramer, Adelson Institute Senior Fellow at the Shalem Center in Jerusalem, and Dr. Samer Shehata, a Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson Center.

Obama and the Two State Solution

Dr. Asali provided a Palestinian perspective on President Obama’s policies and the two-state solution beginning with a description of the present situation in the Middle East. He described the overall situation as a downhill slope leading towards further conflict, which should encourage all parties to make more compromises. He said that, “if we don’t progress on painful compromise, we will all end in disaster.” He also reiterated his belief that peace based on two states is the only viable solution. Dr. Asali expressed support for President Obama’s call for a total Israeli settlement freeze, which he cited as the single-most important step to secure the credibility and the viability of the peace process.

Dr. Asali said that in his view Hamas could be included in a united Palestinian government as long as it agrees to the PLO’s conditions that it disarm, and accept both existing Palestinian agreements and the goal of a two state peace agreement predicated on the recognition of Israel. He expressed optimism about President Obama’s Middle East policies, making peace based on the creation of a Palestinian state and an end to the Arab-Israeli conflict an important priority. Dr. Asali asserted that President Obama has appropriately and fairly accessed the regional challenge posed by Iran and its allies, and understood the essential national security imperative for the United States in resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in order to deal with that challenge among many other important benefits of securing peace.


American Task Force on Palestine - 1634 Eye St. NW, Suite 725, Washington DC 20006 - Telephone: 202-262-0017