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The situation in the Middle East (Item 34) and Question of Palestine (Item 35)

Intervention by the Permanent Representative of the Argentine Republic, Amb. Martín García Moritán

December 3


After a quarter of century of the Oslo Accords, the hope of a settlement of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict seems to be far away, while we experience an escalation of violence and an accelerated deterioration of the humanitarian situation. Notwithstanding, Argentina continues believing that the only solution is the negotiation between both parties with a view to finding agreement on the questions related to the definitive status identified in the Oslo Accords, i.e., Jerusalem, refugees, settlement, borders and security measures.

Argentina supports a peaceful, definitive and comprehensive solution of the question of Palestine, on the bases of the two-State solution within the pre-1967 border and whatever the parties decide upon during the Peace process, in accordance with the relevant resolutions of this General Assembly and the Security Council.

Argentina reaffirms its support to the inalienable right of the Palestine people to self-determination and to constitute an independent and viable State, recognized for all nations, as well as the right of Israel to live in peace with its neighbors, within safe and internationally recognized borders.

Moreover, Argentina reiterates its concern for the persistent and continues growth of the illegal Israeli settlements in Occupied Palestine Territory and call to cease their expansion. As it has been recalled in several opportunities by this General Assembly, the settlements are contrary to international law; they are and obstacle to peace; they weaken the prospect of two States living in peace and security and, therefore, promote the perpetuation of an unsustainable status quo. The gravity of this situation has been recognized by the Security Council in its resolution 2334 (2016), the terms of which we fully reaffirm.

On the other hand, Argentina condemns the indiscriminate launching of rockets from Gaza against civilians in Israel, as well all the violent actions of Hamas and other armed groups. It is necessary that the Palestinian leaders consider seriously the security concerns of Israel.

In this context, we recognized the right of Israel to exercise its legitimate defense, emphasizing the importance that the Israel actions be respectful of its obligations in accordance with international humanitarian law, bearing in mind, in particular, the principles of distinction and proportionality.

In the light of the financial difficulties that UNRWA is going through, Argentina would like to reaffirm its full support to the work of the Agency and its contribution to avoid a further deterioration of the humanitarian situation in Occupied Palestine Territories. We also reaffirm the need that the international community to come up with an appropriate response to ensure the funds needed by UNRWA to avoid the interruption of its services. For that reason, we celebrate the renewal of the mandate of the agency toward 2023.

With regard to the situation in East Jerusalem, Argentina highlights the special status of Jerusalem, in accordance with the relevant United Nations resolutions, including Security Council resolution 478(1980), and, in that regard, rejects any unilateral attempt to modify it, in particular with regards to the Old City, which has a special significance for the three major monotheistic religions. My country believes that the Holy City should be a place of coming together and peace, and that free access to the holy sites must be guaranteed for Jews, Muslims and Christians alike. Any attempt to deny or to relativize the historical connection and the profound meaning of those places with whatever of the three religions are completely unacceptable, does not contribute to the goal of finding a peaceful solution to the conflict and reinforce prejudices and mistrust between the parties. Argentina considers that Jerusalem is one of the final status issues which must be agreed by the parties in bilateral negotiations.

With regard to the Syrian Golan, Argentina maintains a principled position on the illegal acquisition of territories by force and on respect for the territorial integrity of States. We firmly believe in the principle of the peaceful settlement of disputes, and we consider it important to seek a negotiated solution to the conflict between Syria and Israel, with a view to putting an end to the occupation of the Golan Heights as soon as possible, in accordance with Security Council resolutions 242 (1967) and 338 (1973) and the principle of land for peace.

To conclude, Argentina would like once again to urge Palestinians and Israelis to resume peace talks while acting in good faith, with flexibility and in accordance with international law, with a view to reaching an agreement on outstanding issues concerning the final status of Palestine in all its aspects.

Thank you.




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