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Illegal annexation of Palestinian land undermines prospects for peace: OIC

NEW YORK, 25th June, 2020 (WAM) — The group of member states of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, OIC Group, warned that the implementation of Israel’s illegal unilateral annexation plan would undermine the realisation by the Palestinian people of their right to self-determination and decades-long efforts by the international community towards achieving a two-state solution.
This came during the UN Security Council’s monthly meeting on the situation in the Middle East, including the Question on Palestine. The UAE, in its capacity as Chair of the OIC Group, submitted a written statement to the council, reiterating that the annexation of Palestinian land would violate international law, the Charter of the UN, and relevant UN resolutions.
The statement underscored the urgency of the Palestinian people achieving the fulfilment of their right to exercise their legitimate rights, including their right to self-determination and to sovereignty over the territory of the State of Palestine, based on the 4th June 1967 borders, with East Jerusalem as its capital.
The OIC Group reiterated concerns over the grave situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, OPT, including East Jerusalem, particularly with regards to Israel’s construction of a wall, continued settlement construction and expansion, land confiscation and annexation, and demolition of homes and properties, as well as the forced displacement of Palestinian citizens.
The group recalled that on 10th June 2020, the foreign ministers of OIC member states adopted a resolution rejecting Israel’s threat to annex parts of the Palestinian land.
The OIC Group stressed that there was an urgent need for the international community to engage in serious efforts to halt Israel’s illegal annexation plan in order to salvage prospects for peace. With reference to Security Council resolution 2334 (2016), the OIC Group reiterated its calls on states to distinguish in their relevant dealings between the territory of the State of Israel and the OPT, including East Jerusalem.
The organisation called on the Security Council to honour its obligations under the UN Charter and to address Israel’s annexation plan. It reiterated its demand that Israel, as the occupying power, fully respect all its obligations under international law.
On the impact of the novel coronavirus pandemic, the OIC Group urged the international community to also consider how the pandemic has exacerbated health, economic, and social challenges in the Palestinian territory. The OIC Group encouraged support for the UN COVID-19 Response Plan for Palestine, UNRWA’s programme budget, and the COVID-19 Flash Appeal for Palestine Refugees.