Israel should take “credible steps” to spark the resumption of peace talks with the Palestinian Authority, including freezing settlement activity and the regular transfer of all the tax fees owed to it, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said on Tuesday.
“I strongly urge the incoming government to reaffirm Israel’s commitment to the two-state solution,” Ban said.
He also called on the international community to help solve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and to increase its donor support of Gaza, when he spoke to the UN Security Council, which discussed the peace process which has been frozen for a year.
“I am encouraged by current discussions among member states. The United Nations is committed to supporting such efforts,” he said.
He welcomed Israel’s agreement with the PA with regard to the transfer of five months of tax fees it had withheld to protest the PA’s decision to join the International Criminal Court so that it could sue Israel for war crimes.
But he chastised Israel for using tax fees as a punitive measure against the PA as he called for a return to a routine schedule by which the fees would be transferred.
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