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Quartet picks Blair as peace envoy

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Tony Blair will be moving to Jerusalem to become the Quartet’s special peace envoy to the Middle East.A statement released Wednesday by U.N. headquarters in New York confirmed Blair’s appointment, which was reportedly agreed upon yesterday in Jerusalem at a meeting of the Quartet, the diplomatic grouping made up of the United States, Russia, the European Union and the United Nations. As envoy, Blair is charged with mobilizing international assistance to the Palestinians, securing support for the institutional governance needs of the future Palestinian state, promoting Palestinian economic development, and coordinating Quartet objectives with other countries. “As representative, Tony Blair will bring continuity and intensity of focus to the work of the Quartet in support of the Palestinians, within the broader framework of the Quartet’s efforts to promote an end to the conflict in conformity with the roadmap,” the statement said. “He will spend significant time in the region working with the parties and others to help create viable and lasting government institutions representing all Palestinians, a robust economy, and a climate of law and order for the Palestinian people.”Blair’s new post will be based in Jerusalem, with a potential second office in the West Bank, and will be assisted by a team of experts.

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