The Philippines followed with serious concern the recent violence in parts of Israel, the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, which lasted almost two weeks, especially with regard to the death of many civilians, particularly children, and the related destruction. We thus welcome the ceasefire last week between Israel and Hamas which put a stop to the killings and destruction. We underline the need to maintain the ceasefire and avoid further killings and destruction.
The Philippines recognizes the resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as a key to the region’s peace and stability. The Philippines supports the peaceful implementation of all UN initiatives towards the resolution of the Middle East conflict, and supports all efforts to revive the Middle East Peace process articulated in the Quartet’s Roadmap to Peace. The Philippines has always expressed support for the creation of the State of Palestine living in peace and security with its neighbors. In this regard, the Philippines reaffirms its support for a two-state solution.
We commend the efforts of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), under extraordinary circumstances, to immediately respond to “the humanitarian needs of affected populations (refugees and non-refugees), including the tens of thousands of people who have sought safety in Agency schools in Gaza including Designated Emergency Shelters (DESs) which are equipped to host internally displaced persons (IDPs) during times of conflict."
The Philippines enjoins the parties to bring a more intense focus on building trust and confidence. We also ask them to refrain from actions that could further incite violence. We encourage the parties to clearly demonstrate their resolve to pursue a just and lasting peace upon which the world, and not only their peoples, would undoubtedly benefit.
We call on all stakeholders, including the Middle East Quartet, to help negotiate the best possible diplomatic outcome. As the Secretary-General articulated recently, “A revitalized peace process is the only route to a just and lasting solution.”
Finally, the Philippines urges the community of nations to support efforts that would expand the space for dialogue, mutual understanding and cooperation for peace among the parties concerned.
Thank you, Mr. President.