Speakers at UNSC stress end of Israeli occupation as road to peace

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Speaking at a UN Security meeting held on the Middle East crisis, including the Palestinian issue., Ayman Safadi, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs for Jordan, underscored that ending the Israeli occupation of Palestine is the viable way to ensure peace for Palestinians, Israelis and all others in the region. 'Those who purport to say that this conflict is a religious conflict are lying. They are trying to falsify history and reality,' he said, stressing that the conflict continues because of an 'unfair occupation and flagrant injustice.' He urged the Security Council to make a strong call for a ceasefire and to bring an end to Israeli aggression. 'We demand the international community bring an end to the occupation, to bring an end to the conflict,' he said, adding: 'You all support the two-state solution, this solution brings an end - by definition - to the occupation.' 'There is only one viable path to peace that we all want,' the Minister continued, calling on the Security Counci l to adopt a resolution recognizing the Palestinian Independent State with Jerusalem as its capital along the pre-1967 borders. As the floor opened to non-Council members, Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani, Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs of Qatar, said Palestinians 'have gone through hell' in the past weeks. Prime Minister Al-Thani said he looked forward to further action by the Security Council, including a monitoring mechanism to oversee aid distribution to the Strip Above all, international humanitarian law must be upheld, without double standards, he stated. 'It is high time to take real measures towards peace,' he said. 'Any attempt to avoid straight forward actions will only lead to an escalation of violence. We call for peace. The region will not enjoy peace and security without the establishment of a Palestinian State.' The current truce is 'a sign of hope', said Khalifa Shaheen, the United Arab Emirates' Minister of State to the UNSC. He underlined the relevance of the UN chief's briefing on progress made regarding aid to Gaza, he said it was vital to improve aid mechanisms 'in a sustained manner and at sufficient scale'. Recent events have demonstrated the need for the international community to stop merely managing this conflict, he said. "Instead, we must work to revive hope for the possibility of reaching a just, lasting, and comprehensive political solution to the Palestinian issue," he said. He underscored that achieving sustainable peace would not be possible without ending the Israeli occupation of all Palestinian and Arab territories and establishing an independent Palestinian state, based on the borders of 4 June 1967, with East Jerusalem as its capital, living side by side with Israel in security, peace, and mutual recognition. Wang Yi, Foreign Minister of China, which holds the Council presidency for November, said in his national capacity that the way out of crisis and conflict is through the Two-State solution. 'Dialogue and negotiation is the best way to sa ve lives,' he said, adding that at this crossroads of war and peace, the international community must work towards finding solutions. 'Resumed fighting will most likely turn into a calamity that encompasses the whole region,' he said, expressing hope that the pause will be the beginning of a negotiated ceasefire. Civilians must be protected with more robust actions, and the UN must play a greater role in humanitarian efforts in Gaza, he said, announcing that China will provide another package of aid. Source: Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA