President Reuven Rivlin met with the US Ambassador to the UN Samantha Power and Dan Shapiro, US Ambassador to Israel, at the Presidential Residence in Jerusalem on Monday morning.
While reiterating the importance of the close relationship between the US and Israel, the Israeli President emphasized that a solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict cannot be imposed by outside powers, calling for direct negotiations between Israel and Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas.
"The conflict between us – the tragedy between us – can only be solved through direct negotiations," said Rivlin. "No solution can be imposed on either side, and we must negotiate to come to an understanding."
Last summer France sought an 18-month deadline for a final status agreement, with an imposed settlement enforced by Europe should the two sides fail to come to a mutually agreed upon decision. Since then, the European Union has begun impose unilateral economic sanctions on Israeli goods produced beyond the Green Line, as part of a larger effort to force a restart of negotiations.
Prior to her appointment as Ambassador to the United Nations, Samantha Power called for an American "military presence" and "external intervention" in Israel to impose a final settlement to the Arab-Israeli conflict.
The visit comes at a time of chilly relations between the Obama Administration and Israel, following the controversial Iran nuclear deal reached last year.