Barack Obama said as president he would begin working on an Israeli-Palestinian peace deal from his first day in office.
The presumptive Democratic candidate said, however, that both sides must work to make peace happen.
“There’s a tendency for each side to focus on the faults of the other rather than look in the mirror,” Obama told reporters Tuesday in Amman, Jordan, before heading to Israel and the Palestinian Authority.
Obama, a U.S. senator from Illinois, is on a tour of Europe and the Middle East on what his advisers insist is a senatorial fact-finding tour. But his campaign is also eager to build up his foreign policy credentials.
“The Israeli government is unsettled, the Palestinians are divided between Fatah and Hamas, and so it’s difficult for either side to make the bold move that would bring about peace,” Obama said.
“My goal is to make sure that we work, starting from the minute I’m sworn into office, to try to find some breakthroughs.”
Obama was careful to point out that peace would not come about overnight and that a U.S. president could not “suddenly snap his fingers and bring about peace.”