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Touching base US Middle East envoy stops off in Bern

Swiss Foreign Minister Didier Burkhalter has met the US Envoy for Middle East Peace to discuss the ongoing peace process. Talks focused notably on Switzerland’s contribution to the application of humanitarian law in the Middle East.

David Hale’s working visit to Bern on Saturday came after a trip aimed at getting the Israelis and Palestinians back to the negotiating table.

Switzerland has tried to advance the cause of international humanitarian law in the Middle East by talking to all the parties involved. “Recurring violations of international humanitarian law by the different parties make finding a solution to the conflict more difficult,” said a foreign ministry statement.

The Swiss government has regularly called on all participants to respect their legal obligations and to become involved in serious talks aimed at resolving the conflict and improving the humanitarian situation.

Burkhalter met the controversial Israeli foreign minister Avigdor Lieberman earlier this week. He told Lieberman that “a just and lasting peace would be possible only through the creation of an independent and viable Palestinian state with secure and recognised borders alongside Israel”.

swissinfo.ch and agencies


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