H. E. Mr. Salaheddin Al-Bashir, Minister for Foreign Affairs
29 September 2008
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SALAHEDDIN AL-BASHIR, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Jordan, said it was essential to revitalize the role of the General Assembly as envisaged in the Charter. Jordan supported the trend of rebalancing the relationship between the Assembly and the Security Council.
In addition to facing the global challenges of high food and energy prices and climate change, Jordan had to deal with continued military occupation and the denial of its people’s right to self-determination and free expression of their identity. The United Nations most important work in the Middle East was as the custodian of international law. Having believed in the role of the United Nations, Jordan still viewed the Organization as the basic forum to find a solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict, ending the occupation of Arab land and redressing the injustice and suffering of the Palestinian people, he said.
The Arab Peace initiative was, and still is, a clear invitation to Israel to become a part of the region without conditions or limitations, he said. Yet Israel had ignored that initiative and had continued building the separation wall in defiance of the advisory opinion of the International Court of Justice. Israel had also intensified its settlement activities, which threatened the chances for creating an independent and viable Palestinian state. Jordan supported the efforts of the diplomatic Quartet and the renegotiations originated in Annapolis.
Jordan cherished the peace choice, strategic peace that was reaffirmed by the Arab Peace Initiative and the two-state solution. As the first anniversary of Annapolis approached, he said challenges facing those negotiations compelled the international community to demand that the parties fulfil their pledges. It should ask the Quartet to make additional efforts to achieve the desired results in the final status negotiations and the obligation of the road map.
Turning to Iraq, Jordan welcomed the country’s remarkable progress and had reopened its embassy in Baghdad, which was adequately staffed. His Majesty King Abdullah II had recently visited Iraq. He said making the Middle East a zone free of weapons of mass destruction was a prerequisite for peace and stability there. He called on the international community and influential States to ensure the accession of all countries in the region to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons.
It was important to strengthen international monitoring mechanisms to ensure the Middle East was free from nuclear weapons. Concerning the Iranian nuclear issue, Jordan believed every nation should exercise its right to the peaceful use of nuclear energy. Jordan upheld international counter-terrorism conventions and valued international cooperation in that area.