Delivered by: His Excellency Ambassador Mohamed Abushahab, Deputy Permanent Representative and Chargé d’Affaires, a.i.
I would like to express our deepest appreciation for the tireless and continuous efforts of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, as well as the Division of Palestinian Rights, for supporting the Palestinian people in achieving their legitimate aspirations.
The UAE continues to stress its historic position towards the Palestinian cause. This position was emphasized by His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the United Arab Emirates, in his message to mark the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, and I quote: “I affirm the unwavering solidarity of the UAE, government and people, with the Palestinian people, and our support of their legitimate aspirations to obtain their inalienable rights, including their right to self-determination and the establishment of their independent state based on the borders of 4 June of 1967, with East Jerusalem as its capital, in accordance with agreed international references, including the Arab Peace Imitative.”
The UAE is therefore keen to support regional and international efforts aimed at breaking the current stalemate in the Middle East Peace Process. We also support efforts to confidence-building between the parties to return to serious negotiations leading to the achievement of the two-state solution, in which the Palestinian State lives side by side with Israel, in peace, security, and mutual recognition. We also stress that diplomacy and peaceful dialogue remain the only options to end the conflict and consolidate peace and stability in the region.
Additionally, we express our concerns over the continuation of violence and attacks in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, particularly in the West Bank. The UAE stresses the need for calm and for the provision of protection for civilians, especially children. Israel should fulfill its responsibilities in accordance with international law and relevant United Nations resolutions. We also highlight the need to stop all illegitimate practices in the OPT, primarily the demolition and confiscation of Palestinian land and property, as well as the building and expansion of settlements, which constitute a violation of international law and undermine the two-state solution and prospects for peace. We also stress the need to preserve the legal and historical status quo in Jerusalem, and to respect Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan’s custodianship over the holy sites.
In conclusion, the UAE reaffirms its continued support for the Palestinian people to alleviate their difficult and exacerbated humanitarian and economic conditions. Last month, the UAE signed a cooperation agreement with the World Health Organization to support Al-Makassed Hospital in East Jerusalem with USD 25 million for medicine and medical equipment.
We take this opportunity to commend the efforts of UNRWA, which continues to play a key role alleviating the suffering of more than five million Palestinian refugees in the region. We stress the need for the international community and this organization to continue providing humanitarian and development support to enable the Palestinians to build their national institutions and achieve the goal of sustainable development in pursuit of security, stability, and prosperity in the region.
Thank you, Mr. President.