JERUSALEM, Dec. 14 (UPI) -- Israeli President Shimon Peres warned Tuesday that the countdown towards peace has started and time is running out, Israeli media said.
"There are serious processes of de-legitimizing Israel, radical Islamization in the region and Iran arming itself. We must come to our senses now. There is not much time left for discussions," Peres told a convention in the Galilee, Ynetnews.com said.
"There is no peace that is not regional peace. There is no country which not affected by the global economy, and security no longer depends on one country. In this era missiles can be fired on us not just from Gaza, but even from Alaska," the president said.
His statements came as U.S. Envoy George Mitchell shuttled between Jerusalem and Ramallah in an effort to reignite peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians. Mitchell was due to meet with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas Tuesday and on Monday reportedly met with Israel's Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu for three hours.
On Monday, the council of European Union foreign ministers issued a statement in Brussels giving preference to U.S. efforts to moving the peace process forward and not to recognize the unilateral declaration of a Palestinian state at present, Ma'an news agency said.
A statement issued by the ministers said the EU "reiterates its readiness, when appropriate, to recognize a Palestinian state," but that "urgent progress is needed towards a two state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict."