29 OCTOBER 2020

The following is a near‑verbatim transcript of today’s noon briefing by Stéphane Dujarric, Spokesman for the Secretary‑General.

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Questions and Answers

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Question:  Thank you, Stéphane.  I have two questions on violation of international law, both of them.  My first question, the US Ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, signed a memo with the Israeli authorities lifting the ban on American companies to invest in settlement.  So, from yesterday on, American companies can invest in illegal Israeli settlements in occupied Palestinian territories.  Do you have a statement on that? And have you followed this important flagrant case of violation of international law at a close range?

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Spokesman:  On the issue of settlements, our position remains the same and has been referred to in statements by the Secretary‑General and by Mr. {Nickolay] Mladenov.

So, our…  it’s up to you to do the compare‑and‑contrast.  Our positions on, whether it’s on settlements, on Western Sahara, remains unchanged.

Okay?  Yeah, go ahead.

Question:  So, you think such a decision by US to lift the ban on investing in settlement is just a matter of just for me to analyse or to…  just to repeat the traditional position of the UN, is not worth a separate statement?

Spokesman:  Our position on the illegality of settlements is clear and has been clear for a long time.

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For information media. Not an official record.