30 December 2014 – Statement by H.E. Ambassador Dr. Riyad Mansour before the United Nations Security Council, Situation in the Middle East, including the Palestine Question

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Mr. President,

I come before the Security Council on behalf of the leadership of the State of Palestine and the Palestinian people, a long-suffering, yet proud and dignified people, who remain steadfast and fully committed to the achievement of their inalienable rights, justice and their legitimate national aspirations, including to self-determination, freedom and independence, and who remain committed to the pursuit of political, diplomatic, peaceful and non-violent means for the achievement of these objectives, for which there is overwhelming and longstanding global support.

Mr. President,

We have endured the passage of yet another year that has inflicted on the Palestinian people more loss and tragedy and the deterioration of the situation on all fronts due to the illegal, destructive and oppressive actions of Israel, the occupying Power.  It has been a year that has witnessed the breakdown of yet another political process – despite the genuine efforts of the United States with the full support of the League of Arab States and all other major stakeholders, and the good faith efforts and cooperation of Palestine – and the deepening of another political impasse due to brazen Israeli intransigence, creating a totally unsustainable situation, roundly acknowledged by all. [Read more…]

15 December 2014 – Statement by Ambassador Riyad Mansour before the Assembly of States Parties to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (thirteenth session), General Debate, New York

Mr. President,

I would like to wish you warm congratulations on your election as President of the Assembly of States Parties and would like to express our appreciation and gratitude to the outgoing President, Ambassador Tina Intelmann, for her hard work and dedication over the past three years. I also wish to thank the outgoing judges for their expertise and contributions to the Court and to the international community and congratulate the newly elected judges.

Mr. President,

It is a very special moment for the State of Palestine as we were invited to participate in this meeting under rule 94 as an observer State for the first time.  On behalf of the Palestinian people and their leadership, we are profoundly grateful for this invitation and we have listened very closely to each statement made, from the opening session and throughout the General Debate. The collective messages being conveyed by States Parties and observers, including with regard to combating impunity, upholding justice, defending human rights and institutionalizing complementarity, have been resounding, heard loud and clear. The importance of universality of the Rome Statute and the call to States that have not ratified the Rome Statute and joined the International Criminal Court was heard even louder. In this regard, it should be noted that there is in fact a consensus among the Palestinian people, their political organizations and their leadership to join the ICC. The time to join will be decided by our leadership at an appropriate time. We may very well be the 123rd State Party to join the ICC.

Mr. President,

We view the ICC as the international legal and peaceful mechanism to combat impunity and seek accountability and justice.  It is the Court where the Palestinian people desire to seek justice for the war crimes and crimes against humanity being perpetrated against them by Israel, the occupying Power, in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem.  If crimes are being committed against our people and we are unable to prosecute the criminals, isn’t the ICC the correct place to go to? If the Rome Statute states that “the transfer, directly or indirectly, by the Occupying Power of parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies,” is a war crime, then, in the case of illegal Israeli settlements and settlers in our occupied land, isn’t it logical to go to the ICC so as to prosecute and bring an end to this ongoing war crime and to prosecute this continuing crime? When more than 500 Palestinian children are mercilessly killed and more than 3000 are injured in 50 days by the occupying Power during its aggression against the southern part of the occupied State of Palestine in the Gaza Strip, shouldn’t these crimes be prosecuted and those responsible for committing them be punished?  When entire Palestinian families have been killed by the occupying Power and their family tree will literally no longer grow, shouldn’t these crimes be prosecuted in the ICC? [Read more…]

3 December 2014 – Statement by Ambassador Ms. Feda Abdelhady-Nasser before the Ad Hoc Committee of the General Assembly for the Announcement of Voluntary Contributions to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA)

Mr. President,

On behalf of the delegation of the State of Palestine, I wish to begin by thanking the Deputy Commissioner-General of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), Ms. Margot Ellis, for her participation in today’s meeting and her briefing on the work of UNRWA over the past year.

 

The updates she has given on the Agency’s financial shortfalls and the instability of its operational environment as well as growing needs of the Palestine refugees due to the deterioration of conditions in all fields of operation attest to the ongoing need for strong donor support of UNRWA. At the same time, the many accomplishments of UNRWA in this past year despite these challenges attest to the very real impact of its humanitarian mission in the lives of more than 5 million Palestine refugees and the important role played by the donor community and the Host Countries in supporting UNRWA’s mission.  We reiterate our gratitude for this principled support for UNRWA’s mandate and for the longstanding compassion for the Palestine refugees, both of which have been clearly reaffirmed today. [Read more…]

6 November 2014 – Statement by Ms. Feda Abdelhady-Nasser, Ambassador, before the Special Political and Decolonization Committee (4th Committee), Agenda Item 51: Report of the Special Committee to Investigate Israeli Practices Affecting the Human Rights of the Palestinian People and Other Arabs of the Occupied Territories

Mr. Chair,

On behalf of the State of Palestine, I express our deep appreciation to the members of the Special Committee to Investigate Israeli Practices Affecting the Human Rights of the Palestinian People and Other Arabs of the Occupied Territories.  We thank Ambassador Palitha Kohona of Sri Lanka, Chair of the Committee, Ambassador Hussein Haniff of Malaysia and Ambassador Fode` Seck of Senegal for their efforts and for the report (A/69/355) submitted on the human rights situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and the Occupied Syrian Golan and the serious recommendations made therein.

We also thank the Secretary-General and the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights for the comprehensive reports prepared pursuant to the General Assembly resolutions regarding “Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and the occupied Syrian Golan” (A/69/348) and “Israeli practices affecting the human rights of the Palestinian people in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem” (A/69/347). These reports attest to a systematic pattern of human rights violations as a result of the illegal, oppressive and destructive policies and measures that continue to be carried out by Israel, the occupying Power. [Read more…]

4 November 2014 – Statement by Rabii Hantouli on Permanent sovereignty of the Palestinian people in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and of the Arab population in the occupied Syrian Golan over their natural resources

كلمة ربيع الحنتولي، المستشار أول، البعثة المراقبة الدائمة لدولة فلسطين لدى الأمم المتحدة، أمام اللجنة الإقتصادية والمالية (اللجنة الثانية) حول البند 60 ” السيادة الدائمة للشعب الفلسطيني في الأرض الفلسطينية المحتلة، بما فيها القدس الشرقية، وللسكان العرب في الجولان السوري المحتل على مواردهم الطبيعية”،  الدورة 69 للجمعية العامة للأمم المتحدة، نيويورك،            4 نوفمبر/ تشرين الثاني 2014.

السيد الرئيس،

أود في البداية أن أتقدم بإسم فلسطين بالتهنئة الصادقة لكم على توليكم رئاسة هذه اللجنة، وكذلك إلى أعضاء المكتب الموقرين، كما أتقدم بالشكر إلى السكرتارية على عملها الدؤوب. وِاسمحو لي أيضا أن أشكر السيدة ريما خلف، الأمينة التنفيذية للجنة الإقتصادية والإجتماعية لغربي آسيا (الإسكوا)، على تقديمها لتقرير الأمين العام المعد من قبل الإسكوا والمعنون “الإنعكاسات الإقتصادية والإجتماعية للإحتلال الإسرائيلي على الأحوال المعيشية للشعب الفلسطيني في الأرض الفلسطينية المحتلة، بما فيها القدس الشرقية، وللسكان العرب في الجولان السوري المحتل”، والوارد في الوثيقة رقم  A/69/81-E/2014/13.

السيد الرئيس، [Read more…]

29 October 2014 – Statement by Ambassador Dr. Riyad Mansour before the United Nations Security Council Emergency Meeting on the Situation in Occupied East Jerusalem

Mme. President,

I thank you for your swift response to our urgent appeal and to the formal request by Jordan, the Arab representative on the Security Council, to convene this emergency meeting to address the critical situation in Occupied East Jerusalem, which clearly has bearing on the crisis situation in the rest of Palestine as well as in the region and far beyond.

Mme. President,

Jerusalem, the Holy City for the three monotheistic religions, was and remains the key to peace.  The City is the heart of Palestine and has historically been the religious, political, social, economic and cultural center for the Palestinian people for centuries.  And, Jerusalem, a theater for both conflict and peace, has always maintained an Arab and Islamic identity, and it will remain so.

Yet, Jerusalem is under siege, as Israel, the occupying Power, continues the reckless attempts to change its character, falsify its history, alter its demography, and negate Palestinian rights and connection to Jerusalem.  Israeli provocations and incitement, particularly at Al-Haram Al-Sharif, home to the holy Al-Aqsa Mosque and Qubbat Al-Sakhra (Dome of the Rock), are further inflaming this volatile situation, aggravating religious sentiments, deepening mistrust, and threatening to ignite yet another cycle of violence, including instigation of religious conflict. Such illegal Israeli actions are severely exacerbating the conflict and obstructing a peaceful solution, with grave implications.

We have thus been instructed by President Mahmoud Abbas to bring this crisis situation to the urgent attention of the Security Council, in full recognition of its Charter duty for the maintenance of international peace and security. [Read more…]

21 October 2014 – Statement by Ambassador Dr. Riyad Mansour, Permanent Observer of the State of Palestine to the United Nations, before the United Nations Security Council Open Debate on the Situation in the Middle East, including the Palestine Question

Mme. President,

I congratulate the friendly country of Argentina on its presidency of the Security Council this month and express our appreciation for your able leadership of the Council’s efforts to address the many critical issues on its agenda at this time.

I also express our appreciation to Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon for his important briefing and deep gratitude for his dedicated peace efforts. We are grateful for your leadership of the United Nations delegation to the “Cairo International Conference on Palestine – Reconstructing Gaza” and for your recent visit to the State of Palestine, including to the Gaza Strip, where you witnessed firsthand the massive destruction and devastation wrought by the Israeli military aggression in July and August and the suffering that continues in the absence of real recovery, reconstruction and sustainable solutions to core issues of this conflict.

We have long appealed for the Security Council members to visit Palestine to see unfiltered these realities and the grave injustice being endured by the Palestinian people under Israeli occupation.  We are certain this would better inform the Council’s deliberations and compel greater resolve to contribute to a viable solution through implementation of the Council’s resolutions and in line with its Charter duty for international peace and security.  As noted by the Secretary-General during his visit to Gaza, “No amount of Security Council sessions, reports or briefings could have prepared me for what I witnessed today”.  At this critical time, we again appeal for such a visit by the Council, stressing the imperative of salvaging the prospects for Palestinian-Israeli peace.   [Read more…]

20 October 2014 – Statement by Ms. Reem Julia Mansour, Esq., Legal Adviser, before the Sixth Committee: Status of the Protocols Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and relating to the protection of victims of armed conflicts

Mr. Chair,

Since this is the first time my delegation speaks in this committee, I’d like to express my delegations congratulations to you on your election as chair of this committee and to all the members of the bureau.

Mr. Chair,

The State of Palestine is deeply committed to ensuring respect for and adherence to international humanitarian law (IHL). The Geneva Conventions and Additional Protocols provide a necessary and fundamental framework for parties in armed conflict, including situations of foreign occupation, by providing protections to civilians and imposing restraints on military conduct. Yet, more efforts must be focused on ensuring better compliance with the law so that civilians affected by armed conflict are protected and their suffering minimized to the extent possible. Efforts must also be made to ensure that the restraints provided for by the law are in fact obeyed by militaries. The State of Palestine believes that the international community must continue to work together to promote greater compliance with international humanitarian law so that civilians are afforded the utmost protection in times of war. [Read more…]

16 October 2014 – Statement by Ms. Reem Julia Mansour, Esq., Legal Adviser, before the Third Committee: Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Children

Madam Chair,

The State of Palestine somberly comes before this August Committee today to draw your attention to the most recent tragedy that took place in the Occupied State of Palestine and the crimes committed against our people by Israel, the occupying Power. Sadly, as has always been the case, under the systematic oppression and brutality of Israel’s 47-years of occupation, Palestinian children have borne the brunt of its illegal policies and practices. This was tragically the case in Occupied Gaza, in which for more than fifty days, the occupying Power, attacked the land and the civilian population from land, air and sea, killing, wounding, damaging and destroying everything in sight. The disproportionate use of force by Israel, the occupying Power, in Gaza was evident by the damage and sheer destruction of government and civilian infrastructure, residential neighborhoods, UN schools and hospitals. [Read more…]

14 October 2014- Statement by Mrs. Somaia Barghouti, Senior Adviser, before the Third Committee: Advancement of women

At the outset, allow me to begin by congratulating you upon your election as Chair of this important Committee. We are confident that you will bring the work of the Committee to a successful conclusion. We also extend our congratulations to all the members of the Bureau.

Madame Chair,

In the upcoming year of 2015 the international community will commemorate two major events related to the advancement and empowerment of women.  These two major events namely, the 20th anniversary of the adoption of the Beijing Declaration and Platform of Action, which was adopted in 1995 as well as the 15th anniversary of Security Council resolution 1325,which was adopted in 2000. Nearly two decades later, the international community can confidently list many examples in which significant achievements have been made in connection with the full equality and development of women. At the same time, it would also be true to state that women in all parts of the world still face many constraints and obstacles that continue to hinder their efforts towards the full implementation of the strategic objectives of the outcomes contained in these documents. We hope the convening of these significant events will mark a new era in which gender equality become a reality and women will overcome all difficulties and challenges they face in their struggle to achieve their full advancement and empowerment. [Read more…]