Kerry: Hope Fading for 2 States

Kerry: Hope Fading for 2 States

Michael Jacobs

Atlanta Jewish Times Editor Michael Jacobs is on his second stint leading the AJT's editorial operations. He previously served as managing editor from 2005 to 2008.

Secretary of State John Kerry spoke for about 75 minutes Wednesday, Dec. 28, in a speech that was presented as his vision for a path forward toward a two-state solution between Israel and the Palestinians but was devoted largely to a defense of the U.S. abstention Friday on U.N. Resolution 2334, which criticized Israeli settlement activity.

Kerry said the United States could not stand by and allow Israeli settlements to erode the chances for a two-state solution, which he called the only result that could guarantee an Israel that is Jewish and democratic.

Kerry laid out six principles for such a solution, none of which is new: two secure states based on negotiated adjustments to the pre-Six-Day War lines; two states for two peoples with mutual recognition and full rights for all citizens; a just and fair resolution for Palestinian refugees, including compensation, homes and acknowledgment of their suffering; Jerusalem as the capital of both states, with protected access to all religious sites; ensured security for Israel with the end of the occupation; and the end of the wider Mideast conflict and all outstanding claims, resulting in normalized Arab-Israeli relations.

Among the quick reactions, Rabbi Rick Jacobs, the head of the Union for Reform Judaism, praised the speech despite reiterating the URJ’s opposition to the U.S. abstention on Resolution 2334.

We collected the highlights from the Kerry speech in the Storify post below.

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