Statement Of H.E. Salahuddin Rabbani Minister Of Foreign Affairs And Head Of Delegation Islamic Republic Of Afghanistan At The Fifth Extraordinary Oic Summit On Palestine And Al-Quds Al-Sharif
JAKARTA, INDONESIA - 7 TH March, 2016
In the name of God, Most Compassionate, Most Merciful,
Excellency, Mr. Chairman, President Joko Widodo of the Republic of Indonesia,
Excellency, Mahmoud Abbas, President of the State of Palestine
Excellency, Secretary General of the OIC,
Distinguished Heads of States and Governments,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
I would like to extend my sincere gratitude to our Honorable Chairman for the initiative to convene today’s Summit meeting on the Situation in Palestine and Al Quds and Sharif. I also express our appreciation to the Government of the Republic of Indonesia for hosting this important gathering, and the warm hospitality extended to us all.
Today’s gathering serves to underscore our clear and collective support for our Palestinian brothers and sisters, as they continue their struggle for peace and security, sovereignty and full-statehood. On this occasion, I reaffirm to the people and Government of Palestine, our deep and abiding support for the vision of peaceful, sovereign and independent Palestinian State, whose citizens can live in peace and security, and with honor and dignity.
Our solidarity and support for the just cause of the Palestinian people is symbolized by the continuing efforts we render as Vice-Chairman of the Committee on the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People - a responsibility in which we take great pride.
The denial of the Palestinian people’s inalienable rights equates to one of the greatest injustices of the past century. For over six decades now, the people of Palestine have lived under occupation, and have been subject to a form of aggression that has sought to strip them of their national identity. And despite all past efforts, the international community has failed to register tangible progress in changing their plight.
Afghanistan is gravely concerned about the prevailing situation on the ground, which remains a source of deep concern to the “Islamic world, and the global community at large.” The deep sense of frustration and despair on the part of Palestinians has exacerbated, rather than subsided as the occupying power continues provocative and illegal acts which amount to a gross violation of international humanitarian law, and have worsened the plight of Palestinian citizens.
The destruction of Palestinian homes and infrastructure; continued settlement activity in occupied territories; imposition of blockades and other restrictions, coupled with systematic attempts at the Judaization of Al-Quds and Sharif have undermined the very prospect of resuming “direct, meaningful and result-oriented” talks between the two-sides.
Afghanistan joins previous speakers in condemning, and calling for an end to such illegal acts, which will be vital for achieving any progress to overcome the current political impasse, and revive direct peace talks for achieving a two-State solution. Moreover, the occupying power must adhere to the principles of international human rights law, and international humanitarian law, including the protection of Palestinian civilian populations in occupied territory.
We remain convinced that the creation of an independent Palestinian State, achieved on the basis of the two-State solution on the pre-1967 borders offers the surest path to a just, comprehensive and lasting settlement of the question of Palestine. We all share the burden of helping to realize noble task and strategic imperative, which will go a long way in enhancing peace, security and stability in the wider region, and beyond.
In that respect, it is evidently clear that a reinvigorated international effort is required to change the status-quo, and inject new hope and confidence in the prospect of a just and sustainable solution, by which the Palestinian people are able to realize peace, independence and justice. As a collective group, we should initiate new avenues of collaboration, with the various regional and international stakeholders, including but not limited to the UN and the Quartet, to forge a more unified international effort for the task at hand.
We believe that the convening of an international peace conference, as called for by the President of Palestine, can serve fruitful in reversing the current trend and charting a new path for sustained progress in the way forward. We are, therefore, pleased that this initiative has been given due consideration in the resolution, to be adopted at the conclusion of our meeting.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
The OIC shall spare no effort in helping our Palestinian brothers and sisters realize their inalienable rights. Despite our efforts thus far, we can and should do more. From helping to curtail the level of violence and reviving the peace process, to rendering humanitarian assistance for those in need of aid; our approach should be all encompassing – designed to address diverse aspects of the challenges confronting the Palestinian people.
We also believe that the situation in Palestine should not be seen in isolation from the difficult and complex set of challenges, characterized by instability and violence in other parts of the region, where the flames of violence continue unabated. A lasting settlement of the question of Palestine, based on the two-State solution, will be essential for peace and tranquility in the wider region.
To conclude, let me reiterate that Afghanistan stands in full solidarity with our Palestinian brothers and sisters in their quest to realize their inalienable rights, including the creation of a sovereign and independent Palestinian State.
I thank you.