Tony Blair: ‘Underlying problems’ must be dealt with to end cycle of violence

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Tony Blair: ‘Underlying problems’ must be dealt with to end cycle of violence

Former prime minister said the result of conflict was 'horrific for ordinary people'

Lee Harpin is the Jewish News's political editor

Former prime minister Tony Blair. Photo credit: Yui Mok/PA Wire
Former prime minister Tony Blair. Photo credit: Yui Mok/PA Wire

Tony Blair has warned that unless the “underlying problems” in the Middle East are dealt with Israel will remain in a perceptual cycle of violence with the Palestinians.

The former Prime Minister added that only a “viable clear process” for resolving the central issues would prevent further returns to violence in the future.

Blair said: “You know, unless you deal with the underlying problems then I’m afraid every so often you’re going to get these conflicts that are horrific in their consequence for ordinary people.

“And the international community can say whatever they want to about de-escalation and stopping the conflict.

“The truth is it will continue for a time at least but afterwards the single most important thing is that we get a viable clear process for resolving the underlying problems of the Palestinian Israeli conflict.

“At that point, we’ve got a chance of avoiding conflicts but for us, the situation remains as it is this I’m afraid is periodically what you get and that is absolutely heart-breaking.”

The former Labour leader was speaking on Sky News on Monday and added: “It’s a heart-breaking situation, I’m still involved in it. I have an office out in the Middle East.

“But it will continue for some time until the conditions are right for a cease fire – but that is only a ceasefire and what we need is to tackle those underlying problems.”

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