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07/15/2009 - NAM Foreign Ministers adopt declaration on Palestine

NAM'S FMs ADOPT DECLARATION ON PALESTINE


SHARM EL-SHEIKH, Egypt, July 15 (NNN-KUNA) -- Foreign ministers of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) have adopted a declaration on Palestine which will be tabled at the 15th summit of the grouping for endorsement.

The two-day summit will open here on Wednesday under the chairmanship of Egyptian President Mohammad Hosni Mubarak.

The declaration adopted Tuesday renews NAM's political support for the Palestinian leaders in their struggle for ending the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories since 1967.

While pledging to continue all possible assistance to the Palestinian people, the document urges acceleration of regional and international efforts aiming to reach a peaceful settlement to the Middle East conflict.

The NAM is committed to back the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination and statehood based on the pre-June 5, 1967 borderlines, provided that East Jerusalem should be the capital of the future independent and sovereign state of Palestine, it says.

The declaration suggests that NAM should entrust its president with leading NAM's pursuit to peaceful, comprehensive and permanent settlement to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict in association with NAM's panel on Palestine.

In order to get the NAM voice reach the international community in regard to Palestine, the movement should establish contacts "on the ministerial level" with members of the Diplomatic Quartet on the Middle East -- the United States, Russia, the European Union, and the United Nations -- as well as the permanent members of the UN Security Council, the declaration underlines.

It urges stepping up of efforts of all concerned parties to revive the Palestinian-Israeli talks as well as the Arab-Israeli peace process in general with full respect for the relevant international laws, UN resolutions, the reference of the Madrid peace conference and the land-for-peace principle.

The declaration reiterates NAM's recognition of the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) as the sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people.

It renews support for the Palestinian National Authority (PNA) led by President Mahmoud Abbas and for PNA's national and democratic institutions including the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC or parliament). These institutions constitute the vital foundations of the future independent state of Palestine, the document says.

Regarding the deteriorating situation in the occupied Palestinian territories, the declaration voiced profound regret over the results of the recurrent Israeli aggressions on the Palestinian people, notably the military onslaught on the Gaza Strip which claimed more than 1,400 lives in January, 2009.

It urges the international community to pursue the probe into the genocide perpetrated by the Israeli occupation forces in the Gaza Strip and the current stifling blockade on the enclave which constitutes a flagrant violation of the international humanitarian law.

The document condemns the Israeli policy of mass punishment, the indiscriminate arrests of Palestinian citizens and the Jewish settlement expansions on the Palestinian territories.

It calls for an immediate halt to the Israeli illegal practices including the settlement activities and confiscation of the Palestinian land.

It also calls for the lifting of the blockade on the Gaza Strip as soon as possible in order to end the humanitarian crisis there.

As for Israeli violations in Jerusalem, the declaration expressed grave concern over the new Israeli campaign aiming to Judaize the holy city and change its demographic structure and legal status in a bid to create a fait accompli.

The declaration urges the international community, notably the UN Security Council and the Diplomatic Quartet to step in immediately and force the Israeli occupation forces into compliance with the international law, the Fourth Geneva Convention, the UNSC resolutions and the US-conceived Road Map for peace in the Middle East.

The NAM foreign ministers wrapped their meeting here Tuesday by approving a number of documents which are likely to be approved by the NAM summit.

The NAM panel on Palestine consists of the foreign ministers of Palestine, Egypt, Algeria, Bangladesh, Colombia, Cuba, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Senegal, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe.