UNSC urges int’l cooperation to end illegal Israeli settlement

settlement  settlements
(File photo: Jordan News)
AMMAN — According to coverage notes of the UN Security Council (UNSC) meeting held on September 27, many UN representatives, pointing to ongoing expansion of Israeli settlements, demolition of Palestinian structures, daily violence, and continued inflammatory rhetoric by their Government representatives, called for a collective international effort to put an end to the crimes perpetrated by the state of Israel against Palestinian people, and further support for the UNRWA.اضافة اعلان

In the ensuing discussion, Council members stressed that the expanding Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory are a violation of international law and must cease.  Speakers voiced concern about the ongoing violence and lack of political progress on the thirtieth anniversary of the Oslo Accord, this year, and called on parties to exercise maximum restraint and take steps to de-escalate tensions.

Legality of the occupation
Due to the report made earlier this year, “Legality of the Israeli Occupation of the Occupied Palestinian Territory, Including East Jerusalem,” all members of the council agree that many of Israel’s actions are illegal as according to International law.

Brazil’s representative, pointing out that the Council has become unresponsive to the Palestinians’ plight, stressed that the 15-member security council must reflect on its role in paving the way for direct negotiations.  “Sitting on our hands while the situation unravels is short-sighted and dangerous,” he warned.

Ongoing settlement activity
Tor Wennesland, UN special coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, reported that Israeli authorities advanced plans for 6,300 housing units in Area C, and approximately 3,580 housing units in East Jerusalem, pointing to the Israeli Government’s administrative actions that likely expedited settlement expansion. 

“In a continuing trend, many Palestinians, including children, left from their communities citing violence by settlers and shrinking grazing land,” he said.

He noted that 68 Palestinians were killed by Israeli security forces and 10 Israelis by Palestinians in attacks and other incidents. 

UNRWA funding
Detailing the urgent funding needs of the UNRWA and the World Food Program. He highlighted Secretary-General Antonio Guterres’ call on the Government of Israel to cease all settlement activity and the demolitions and seizures of Palestinian structures, as well as the UN chief’s support to Palestinians and Israelis in pursuit of the two-State solution.

Japan’s representative was among speakers who voiced support for UNRWA, underscoring his country’s contribution of over $40 million to the program.  He urged Member States to make sure that UNRWA sustains its core services to the Palestine refugees.

Representative’s comments
The representative of the United States said that the United States opposes the advancement of settlements and urges Israel to refrain from those actions, emphasizing that it undermines “the geographic viability of a two-state solution, exacerbates tensions and further harms trust between the two parties”.

Lifting Gaza blockade
Other speakers, including Gabon’s representative, also called for the lifting of the Gaza blockade in line with Council resolution 1860 (2009), noting that Palestinian territories face budgetary constraints because of restrictions on freedom of movement and trade. 

Switzerland’s representative pointed out that the immediate reopening of the crossing point is necessary to allow some 20,000 Gazans to go to work in Israel.

Two-state solution, further negotiations
France’s representative, echoing other speakers who stressed that the only solution lies in two States living peacefully side by side, both having Jerusalem as their capital, expressed support for the initiative of the EU, Saudi Arabia and the League of Arab States to incentivize negotiations by preparing a packet of measures that would benefit both parties once a peace agreement is signed.  France is prepared to provide a contribution, he stated.

Read more Region and World
Jordan News