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FM deplores Israeli aggression on Palestinians at virtual UN Security Council meeting

By JT - May 17,2021 - Last updated at May 17,2021

A Palestinian woman searches for the families belongings at their house, after it was destroyed by an Israeli air strike in the city of Rafah, in the southern Gaza Strip, on Sunday (AFP photo)

AMMAN — Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi on Sunday held the Israeli side, the occupation force, accountable for the dangerous situation in the occupied Palestinian territories, as well as for all the violence, killing, destruction and suffering on the ground, according to a Foreign Ministry statement.

Addressing a virtual session of the UN Security Council, held to discuss the Israeli aggression in Jerusalem, the Gaza Strip and other Palestinian territories, Safadi said that the escalation must stop, calling for an immediate action to protect Palestinians.

“A just and lasting peace is a strategic choice, and a regional and international necessity, but peace cannot be achieved through building settlements that undermine the two-state solution and breach international law and UN resolutions,” he said.

Land grab, house demolition and forced displacement cannot bring peace, the foreign minister said.

Peace could not be achieved through attempts to alter the legal and historical status quo in Jerusalem, or through attacks on Al Aqsa Mosque/Al Haram Sharif, stressing that Al Haram Al Sharif, with its total area of 144 dunums is a place of worship for Muslims only, in accordance with the resolutions of international legitimacy, including UNESCO’s resolutions, he said.

Jerusalem with its holy shrines is “a red line”, Safadi said, warning that Israeli violations in the holy city amount to “playing with fire and provoke the feelings of two billion Muslims”.

He also highlighted His Majesty King Abdullah’s efforts towards safeguarding the legal and historical status quo and protecting Jerusalem’s Arab-Islamic identity.

He added that all the Kingdom’s capabilities have been devoted to this mission, stressing that “maintaining peace opportunities is conditional on preserving Jerusalem’s holy sites and their identity”.

Safadi also urged the international community and the UN Security Council to shoulder their responsibilities to oblige Israel to respect the rights of Sheikh Jarrah’s residents in their homes in accordance with international law and international humanitarian law in which Jerusalemites are treated as protected residents.

He noted that the forced displacement of the residents of Sheikh Jarrah from their homes under international law is considered as a war crime.

In accordance with international law and Security Council Resolution 478 of 1980, Israeli courts have no authority in occupied Jerusalem, the top diplomat added.

“Occupation is the source of conflict and the basis of all evil,” Safadi said.

“Occupation and peace cannot meet. Peace is achieved by ending occupation, showing respect for the right of Palestinians to a decent life, freedom, an independent sovereign state, respect for international law, and implementing the resolutions of UN Security Council, including Resolution 2334,” he said.

Safadi also stressed that the two-state solution, which guarantees the establishment of an independent Palestinian state on the June 4, 1967 lines with East Jerusalem as its capital, on the basis of international law and the Arab Peace Initiative is the sole way to realise a just and comprehensive peace.

He also highlighted the importance of  launching serious negotiations immediately in order to end occupation and achieve peace on the basis of the two-state solution, according to accredited terms of reference, as well as the principle of "land for peace".

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