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Statement by Ambassador WU Haitao at the Security Council Briefing on the Palestinian Question

2016/12/16

I thank Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon for his briefing. China applauds the Secretary-General’s tireless efforts to advance the Middle East peace process.

The issue of Palestine lies at the heart and at the source of the larger Middle East question. Today, the situation in Palestine is dire. The peace talks between Palestine and Israel are mired in an entrenched deadlock, with violent clashes occurring continuously, together with serious humanitarian crises. In particular, Israel’s continued construction of settlements has undermined the prospects of the two-State solution. The international community should feel a greater sense of urgency, take practical actions and help bring about a comprehensive and just settlement of the Palestine issue without delay.

The international community should stand behind Palestine’s independent statehood and the peaceful coexistence of Palestine and Israel, which is the right way forward. Establishing a Palestinian State, based on the 1967 borders, with East Jerusalem as its capital and enjoying full sovereignty, is an inalienable right of the Palestinian people. The parties concerned should steadfastly advance the peace process on the basis of the principle of land for peace, the two-State solution, the Arab Peace Initiative and the applicable Security Council resolutions.

The international community should encourage Palestine and Israel to hold fast to the right course of peace talks. Both sides should exercise maximum restraint so as to avoid any further escalation of the tensions. Israel should be the first to show good will by ceasing the construction of settlements and the demolition of Palestinian homes, so as to create conditions for the resumption of the peace talks. The parties concerned should show vision and foresight, proceed from the fundamental long-term interests of both peoples to make a political decision, and strive to resume fruitful talks as soon as possible.

The international community should maintain its effort to lend effective support to the Middle East peace process. China supports all efforts conducive to de-escalating tensions between Palestine and Israel and realizing the two-State solution. We support the establishment of more effective mechanisms to help bring peace to the Middle East. We also support the idea that the Council should honor its responsibilities and take action without delay to address positively the legitimate concerns of Palestine and the Arab States. In that process, the parties concerned should strengthen coordination with Palestine and the Arab States so as to form a synergy.

China is a staunch supporter of the just cause of the Palestinian people and is an active mediator for Palestinian-Israeli peace. As a permanent member of the Council, China stands ready to work with the rest of the international community towards a just solution to the Palestine-Israel issue and towards peace and stability in the Middle East as soon as possible.

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