29 November 2011, GA, Permanent Representative's Statement Statement on The Question of Palestine
Mr. President, I have the honor, on behalf of the United Arab Emirates, to thank His Excellency Ambassador Abdul Salam Diallo, Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, and the distinguished members of the Committee for their great efforts to support the Palestinian cause.
On the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, the Government and people of the United Arab Emirates reaffirm their solidarity with the Palestinian people and their support for their just quest to achieve their legitimate aspiration to self-determination, like other people in the world.
Mr. President, despite the political importance given by the international community in 1947 to UN resolution 181, which resulted in changing the map and the future of the Middle East and creating the State of Israel, the independence of Palestine under this resolution has not yet been realized due to the continued occupation and the groundless political obstacles placed by Israel to prevent the establishment of a Palestinian State to this day.
The UAE, which has always supported all regional and international endeavors made so far, including those made by the Quartet, with the aim of achieving a permanent settlement for the Palestinian issue through peace negotiations, expresses its deep concern at the continued breakdown in these negotiations which have reached a stalemate due to the repeated breaches of the Israeli government of the simplest legitimate rights of the Palestinian people and the principles of peace accords.
Accordingly, we call upon the international community to exert firm pressure on Israel to compel it to immediately stop all its violations, including its serious unilateral policies practiced in the Palestinian territories, particularly its illegitimate settlement campaign, which has been accelerated in the Palestinian territories with the aim of changing facts on the ground before the outcome of the final status negotiations. Israel is further required to remove and dismantle existing settlements, including the Separation Wall, in accordance with the advisory opinion of the International Court of Justice, and stop all provocative illegal actions taken in East Jerusalem, which included the demolition of homes, confiscation of lands and properties, the expulsion of original Arab inhabitants, and endangerment of sacred sites. This will enable Israel to demonstrate its good intentions for peace, and will provide suitable conditions for resuming the negotiations for the final status based on the two-state solution and according to a set timetable.
In this context, we call for strengthening the important role of the United Nations, especially the Security Council, and its primary responsibility for implementing its mandate in this regard, by holding Israel accountable for its illegal actions, and determining the extent to which Israel complies with relevant international resolutions, including the Fourth Geneva Convention.
We also affirm our support for the Palestinian request to gain international recognition of the State of Palestine as a full member of the United Nations. This request is consistent with resolutions of international legitimacy and neither contradicts the peace process nor weakens its prospects. The Palestinian request gives impetus to peace negotiations, especially after the Palestinian National Authority fulfilled its commitments towards building Palestinian institutions and furthering the peace process in accordance with international legitimacy.
Mr. President, my delegation expresses its grave concern at the continuing deterioration of the humanitarian situation of the Palestinian people, particularly in Gaza Strip, where the inhumane siege imposed on Gaza since 2006 has denied its people from having access to international humanitarian assistance. Hence we call upon the international community to work together in order to impose concrete solutions on the ground that will ensure the complete lifting of Israel’s siege and releasing the Palestinian political prisoners, who thousands of them live under inhumane conditions in Israeli prisons. In this context, we welcome the Palestinian Reconciliation Agreement concluded recently by President Mahmoud Abbas under Egyptian auspices, and we stress in this context the importance of Israel’s commitment to facilitate the transfer of tax proceeds to the Palestinian Authority without obstacles or conditions in order to enable the Authority to fulfill its responsibilities towards the Palestinian people. We also urge the international community, particularly donors, to increase their economic, financial and humanitarian aid to the Palestinian National Authority to enable it to address the current economic and financial challenges facing it, and to alleviate the suffering of its people by providing them with basic services and improving their living conditions.
Mr. President, the United Arab Emirates affirms that a just and lasting settlement of the Arab-Israeli conflict in the Middle East cannot be achieved without obligating Israel to end all its aggressive policies against countries and people of the region. This includes Israel’s full withdrawal from all Palestinian and Arab territories occupied since 1967, namely East Jerusalem, the Syrian Golan and the remaining occupied Lebanese territories, and the establishment of an independent Palestinian State on the basis of June 1967 borders with Al-Quds Al-Sharif as its capital in accordance with the principles of the Madrid peace process, resolutions of international legitimacy, particularly resolutions 242 and 338, the two-state vision set out in the Road Map, and the Arab peace initiative.
Mr. President, in conclusion, I reiterate the commitment of the United Arab Emirates to continue working with the international community to ensure the success of all efforts and initiatives aiming at consolidating security, stability and peace, which all the people in the Middle East and the world aspire to achieve.