SEVENTY-THIRD SESSION, 6TH & 7TH MEETINGS (AM & PM)
GA/12062

25 SEPTEMBER 2018

 

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Abdullah II ibn al Hussein, King of Jordan, highlighted the importance of collective action in ending the serious crises in the Middle East, especially the long denial of a Palestinian State.  A one-State solution will be ugly and undemocratic and by no means an alternative to a two-State peace settlement, he said.

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Opening Remarks

ANTÓNIO GUTERRES, Secretary-General of the United Nations, said…calling the seven challenges he set out in his address to the general debate at the opening of the seventy-second session a year ago, he noted that, sadly, they remain unresolved.  He cited, among other things, wars in Syria and Yemen, the situation of the Rohingya people, the Israel-Palestinian conflict,…

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DONALD J. TRUMP, President of the United States,…Recalling the relocation of the United States Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, he said peace between Israelis and Palestinians has been advanced, not harmed, by acknowledging the obvious facts.  “America’s policy of principled realism means we will not be held hostage to old dogmas, discredited ideologies and so-called experts who have been proven wrong over the years, time and time again,” he said.

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RECEP TAYYIP ERDOĞAN, President of Turkey,…Stressing that Turkey will continue to be on the side of the oppressed Palestinian people and to protect the historical legal status of Jerusalem,…

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EMMANUEL MACRON, President of France, said…well, solving the Israel-Palestine crisis cannot happen through unilateral initiatives or by trampling on Palestinians’ right to peace or underestimating the right of Israel to safety.  All must go beyond historical positions to think outside the box, he said, stressing that such an approach will effect positive change on the ground.  The law of the strongest will only exacerbate tensions.

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ABDULLAH II IBN AL HUSSEIN, King of Jordan, stressed the importance of collective action in ending the serious crises in the Middle East, especially the long denial of a Palestinian State.  The Palestinian people have equal rights to a future of peace, dignity and hope.  Only a two‑State solution based on international law and relevant United Nations resolutions can meet the needs of both sides:  a viable, independent, sovereign Palestinian State on the 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital, and a secure Israel, fully part of its own region, recognized by Arab and Muslim States around the world.  Describing a one-State solution as “ugly and undemocratic,” he said, “it is by no means an alternative to a two‑State peace settlement”.

Rejecting unilateral measures, he stressed the need to fully fund the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) and other vital efforts in support of families and young people.  “It would be a terrible mistake to abandon youth to the forces of radicalism and despair,” he said.  Turning to the need to safeguard the heritage and peace of Jerusalem, he noted that Jordan carries out a duty as the Hashemite Custodianship of Islamic and Christian holy sites in Jerusalem.

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SHEIKH TAMIM BIN HAMAD AL-THANI, Emir of Qatar, said…Little progress has been made on lingering issues in the Middle East, he said, citing the political stalemate in Palestine.  The deterioration of the situation in the Palestinian territories lays a historic responsibility on the Security Council, he said, reaffirming the importance of negotiations and emphasizing the commitment to the resolutions of international legitimacy, including the two-State solution and the Arab peace initiative.  His country will continue to provide material and political support to the Palestinian people.

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HASSAN ROUHANI, President of Iran, said…he most pressing question in the Middle East remains the situation in Palestine, he stated, adding that “the passage of time cannot and must not justify occupation”.  Citing “the recent enactment of the racist Jewish State law” as a manifestation of apartheid, he said Israel presents the most daunting threat to global peace.

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MUHAMMADU BUHARI, President of Nigeria, said…The situation in the Middle East is worsening and the humanitarian crisis in Gaza is the result of unrestrained use of power.  He reaffirmed support for a just two-State solution to the Israeli‑Palestinian crisis.

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MATAMELA CYRIL RAMAPHOSA, President of South Africa, said…he spotlighted the long‑standing plights of the Palestinian people…

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ABDEL FATTAH AL SISI, President of Egypt,…We cannot talk about the peaceful settlement of disputes without citing the Palestinian cause,” he continued, adding that the situation there is a “perfect example” of the failure of the international system to find a just solution to a conflict.  Political will to resume negotiations and achieve a settlement is key.  “I repeat here what I have said in previous years on this platform, the Arabs are still stretching out their hands in peace,” he said.

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ALAIN BERSET, President of Switzerland,…Citing ongoing global crises particularly in the Middle East, he said that Switzerland is working for a just and lasting peace between Israelis and Palestinians based on a negotiated two-State solution in compliance with international law and relevant Security Council resolutions.

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MAITHRIPALA SIRISENA, President of Sri Lanka,…voiced concern about the situation of the Palestinian people, which required greater attention, adding that he supports their struggle for freedom.

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ADAMA BARROW, President of the Gambia,…affirmed support for the two-State solution for peace between the Palestinians…

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BAKIR IZETBEGOVIĆ, Chairman of the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina,…noted the Israeli‑Palestinian conflict lasting for more than 50 years and holding a region hostage, adding that national interest cannot be justified when a large segment of the population lacks basic services and means to sustain life.

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FILIPE JACINTO NYUSI, President of Mozambique,…His country supports self-determination for Western Sahara and the two-State solution to resolve the Palestinian issue.

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M. SAAD-EDDINE EL OTHMANI, Prime Minister of Morocco,…Turning to other concerns, he invited the United Nations to relaunch a political process regarding the creation of a Palestinian State, with East Jerusalem as its capital.

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For information media. Not an official record.