A Sovereign State of Palestine, Vital: UN Chief
    2009-12-01 05:42:48     Xinhua      Web Editor: Xu Fei
 

"What is urgently needed is a political solution that addresses the roots of the conflict" between Israelis and Palestinians, and "it is vital that a sovereign State of Palestine is achieved," UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said Monday.

The statement came as Ban was addressing a meeting held at the UN Headquarters in New York to mark the International Day for Solidarity with the Palestinian People.

"The question (of Palestine) is as fundamental today as it was 62 years ago, when the General Assembly, in resolution 181, put forth a vision of two States," the secretary-general said. "Today, the State of Israel exists, but the State of Palestine does not."

"The Palestinian people continue to struggle for their inalienable right to self-determination -- a fundamental, universal human right enjoyed by so many others across the world," he said. "The international community continues to assist and protect the Palestinian people, including through the work of UN agencies, UNRWA (the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East) foremost among them."

"However, our interventions must not be limited to managing the humanitarian dimension of this conflict," he said. "What is urgently needed is a political solution that addresses the roots of the conflict."

"It is vital that a sovereign State of Palestine is achieved," he said. "This should be on the basis of the 1967 lines with agreed land swaps and a just and agreed solution to the refugee issue -- a state that lives side-by-side in peace with Israel within secure and recognized borders, as envisaged in the resolutions of the Security Council," he said.

The United Nations designated Nov. 29 as the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian people in a resolution adopted in 1977.

Meanwhile, the secretary-general welcome the commitment of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to a two-State solution.

"I am deeply concerned that talks between Israel and the Palestinian Liberation Organization have been suspended for almost a year," he said.

"I support the clear commitment and continuing efforts of the United States to bring about a resumption of meaningful negotiations on all final status issues, including the security of Israelis and Palestinians, borders, refugees and Jerusalem," he said.

"The biggest challenge to this shared agenda is to create the conditions in which the parties have the trust and confidence to return to genuine and substantive talks," he said.

"I call on the Palestinians to fight violent extremism and to refrain from incitement, and to continue their unyielding struggle to build their own state institutions," he said. "These efforts have resulted in economic and security improvements, which should be sustained and extended."

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