To the Editors:
We think your readers may be interested in this statement of principles and recommendations for a Mideast Peace Settlement by three Israeli writers. We differ on various issues of Israeli politics but agree on the following points:
That this country is the homeland of two peoples—the Jewish and the Palestinian people.
That the core of the conflict between the Jewish people and the Arab world lies in the historical confrontation between the two peoples of this country, which is so precious to both of them.
That the only road to peace is through the co-existence of two sovereign states, each of which will be the national home of its people—the State of Israel and the State of Palestine.
That establishment of the sovereign State of Palestine alongside the State of Israel will be the outcome of negotiations between the government of Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization, as the recognized national representation of the Palestinian people.
That the border between Israel and Palestine should coincide with the line that existed before the war of June 1967, and that minor adjustments to this borderline would be possible on the basis of mutual agreement only.
That Jerusalem, being sacred to both peoples, deserves a special status: it should remain undivided as a municipal unit, accessible to members of all nations and of all faiths, while the Jewish section of Jerusalem will serve as the capital of Israel and the Arab section as the capital of Palestine.
That the border between Israel and Palestine should be open to the free movement of people and goods, throughout the country. No Palestinians will settle in Israel and no Israelis in Palestine other than by the mutual consent of the two governments.
That the national and human tragedy of the Palestinian refugees will find its solution by repatriation to the State of Palestine, and that a reasonable and agreed number of them would be absorbed in the State of Israel, with the help of extensive international assistance.
That the early stages of Israeli-Palestinian co-existence will require security agreements that will be arrived at by mutual agreement. No foreign army shall enter the territory of either of the two states.
That the two states will be sovereign in every respect, including matters of immigration and repatriation. The State of Israel will preserve its links with the Jewish people throughout the world and the State of Palestine its links with the Arab world.
That the two states should engage in a continual dialogue in order to form closer ties, and solve common problems for the good of both the peoples of the country. Any change in the basis of the co-existence of the two states is possible only through free agreement between them.
That the relationship between the peoples of Palestine and Jordan is a problem that concerns these two peoples exclusively and that Israel is not a party to it so long as the basis of Israel-Palestinian co-existence is not undermined.
That for the good of all the nations of the region it is vital that there be an overall regional organization—political, economic, cultural and for security—in which both the States of Israel and of Palestine will be integrated.
These are the principles we regard as the best way to consolidate the sovereignty, integrity, security, and prosperity of the State of Israel. We invite readers interested in this program, from all countries, to write us at P.O. Box 136, Tel Aviv.
Yosi Amitai (founder of the Siah group—new Israeli left), Uri Avneri (former Deputy, publisher of the magazine Haolm Hazeh), Amos Kenan (writer and journalist)