Pakistan renews call for urgent settlement of Palestinian issue

New York, 01 December, 2018

Pakistan urged urgent action at the UN to end the suffering of the Palestinian people and ensure that all UN resolutions are implemented to make way for an independent and contiguous state of Palestine.

Speaking in the General Assembly on Palestine and the Situation in the Middle East, Pakistan’s Ambassador to the UN, Maleeha Lodhi, said that the time had come to bring an end to the tragedy of Palestine and reinvigorate hopes of peace and mutual co-existence in the Middle East.

Declaring that the question of Palestine was about the commitment of international community to abide by the principles of the UN Charter, Ambassador Lodhi said that the unresolved Palestine dispute represented the world’s collective failure to protect the fundamental rights of all human beings, including their right to self-determination.

“The dark shadows of occupation and oppression”, she said, “have lengthened over time and have not only betrayed the hopes and aspirations of generations of Palestinians, but have also sowed the seeds of endless hostility and discord in the Middle East.”

Ambassador Lodhi also pointed to recent developments that had resulted in erosion of the fundamental principles of the two-state solution and have increased the sense of frustration and despondency.

The blatant disregard of longstanding resolutions of the Security Council and the General Assembly on the status of Jerusalem, decisions taken by some countries to relocate their embassies, continued illegal expansion of Israeli settlements, the continuing blockade of Gaza, and the forceful displacement of Palestinians from their lands, were some of the developments highlighted by the Pakistani envoy that were responsible for the continuing suffering of the people of Palestine.

“A conflict that pits an occupying power against an occupied people, where one side is armed with guns and modern weaponry, the other, only with the abiding conviction in their cause, is by its very nature, a travesty of justice and all norms of international law”, Ambassador Lodhi added.

She also reiterated Pakistan’s long-standing principled position that resolving this issue would require a comprehensive settlement, ending occupation and realization of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, including to self-determination and independence and achieving a two-state solution.

She maintained that there was no alternative to “a viable, independent and contiguous State of Palestine on the basis of internationally agreed parameters, the pre-1967 borders and with Al-Quds Al-Sharif as its capital”. This she said was the only sustainable guarantee for enduring peace in the Middle East.

Rejecting the illegal Israeli occupation of the Syrian Golan, Ambassador Lodhi urged the Security Council to play its role to ensure withdrawal of occupation forces from all Arab lands, including from Lebanon and the Syrian Golan.

“The UN will only add to its own credibility by ensuring full implementation of its longstanding resolutions”, she concluded.