WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Peter Welch (D-VT) released the following statement commemorating the 30th anniversary of the Oslo Accords. On this day in 1993, the Government of Israel and the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) signed the Oslo Accords on the White House lawn—a watershed moment in the quest for peace in the Middle East. Upon the signing of the historic Accords—Oslo I in Washington, D.C., and Oslo II in Taba, Egypt, in 1995—lasting peace between the Israelis and Palestinians seemed to be on the horizon.
“The Oslo Accords were historic and intended to be a steppingstone for the eventual formation of a Palestinian State. By ratifying the Accords, Israel agreed to gradually cease and diminish its occupation of the West Bank and, after five years, both Israelis and Palestinians would have their mutually recognized sovereign states. Both parties agreed to start talks on a final, permanent two-state solution.
“Regretfully, hope for this outcome and a two-state solution has faded as Israel’s current and preceding governments further encroach on the West Bank, building new settlements and demolishing Palestinian homes and other structures, and Palestinians continue to lose trust in the Palestinian Authority.
“President Biden has been a consistent, strong advocate of a two-state solution, and we must work together—in a bipartisan, bicameral way—to restore faith in this long-held U.S. policy.
“Violence, poverty, and instability have long plagued the region, and support for a solution depends on the active engagement of the United States. Reaffirming our commitment to a two-state solution is paramount to resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and on the 30th anniversary of the signing of Oslo I we must preserve the hope instilled by that agreement.”