22 October 2013
Statement by H.E. Mr. Mohammad Khazaee Ambassador and Permanent Representative of
the Islamic Republic of Iran to the United Nations on behalf of
the Non-Aligned Movement before the United Nations Security Council
Open debate “Situation in the Middle East; including the Question of Palestine”
22 October 2013, New York
In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful
I have the honor to speak on behalf of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) and at the outset I would like to convey the Movement’s appreciation to Azerbaijan’s presidency of the Security Council for convening this open debate on the situation in the Middle East; including the question of Palestine. I also avail myself of this opportunity to express my appreciation to Mr. Jeffrey Feltman, Under Secretary General for Political Affairs for his briefing to the Council today.
The Non Aligned Movement remains seriously concerned about the situation in Palestine as a result of the illegal policies that continue to be pursued by Israel, the occupying Power, against the Palestinian people and their land. Over the past months, while the international community has been awaiting tangible progress in the resumed negotiations between the two sides and has articulated its full support for this process on the basis of the longstanding parameters rooted in the relevant United Nations resolutions, the Madrid principles, the Arab Peace Initiative and the Quartet Roadmap, the occupying Power has regrettably continued to behave in a manner contradictory to those parameters, to the good faith required for the negotiations and to the overarching objectives of the peace process. Tensions have thus continued to rise, widening the gap between the hopes and expectations for the political process and the reality on the ground. Israeli settlement activities, the blockade of the Gaza Strip, military raids and constant provocations, including incitement to religious conflict by extremist Israeli settlers, are exacerbating conditions on the ground and reinforcing doubts regarding Israel’s desire for or commitment to the peace that the State of Palestine, with the strong support of the international community, including NAM countries, has been earnestly seeking and remains committed to achieving.
NAM is extremely alarmed in particular by the escalation of aggressions in Occupied East Jerusalem, especially in and around Al-Haram Al-Sharif and Al-Aqsa Mosque, which continue to be the result of provocations by Israeli extremists, including settlers and government officials. The blatant disrespect for this holy site and its worshippers and the continued threats to further incursions are tantamount to grave acts of incitement that are stoking religious sensitivities and aggravating already elevated tensions. The Israeli officials continue to recklessly fuel religious tensions by encouraging extremists to provocations, which threaten to ignite religious conflict, with far-reaching and dangerous consequences for the region and beyond. NAM thus, once again, draws the Security Council’s attention to this serious matter, which constitutes a threat to international peace and security, and calls for actions to halt all such Israeli incitement and for respect the sanctity of religious sites.
The NAM also reiterates its serious concern regarding the continued and systematic Israeli violence and human rights violations against the Palestinian people, including the killing and injury of civilians in violent military raids, excessive use of force against civilian protesters, the forced displacement of civilians and the arrest and detention of more Palestinians. Israel’s settlement has activities and construction of the wall have also continued in the recent period throughout the Palestinian land by a myriad of illegal means and measures, in grave breach of the 4th Geneva Convention and numerous UN resolutions. The illegal blockade on the Gaza Strip also remains of serious concern at it continues to inflict grave socioeconomic loss and humanitarian hardship on the Palestinian people besieged there. NAM condemns these violations and urges the international community to persist with the calls on Israel, the occupying Power, to respect its obligations under international law and to cease all such illegal actions and violence against the Palestinian people under its occupation.
The Ministers of Non-Aligned Movement Committee on Palestine met on 26 September 2013 in New York and reviewed the recent developments on the political track and on the ground in Palestine and reaffirmed their solidarity with the Palestinian people and support for their just cause to realize their inalienable right of self-determination and freedom in their independent State of Palestine and to achieve a just solution to the question of Palestine in all aspects. They expressed hope that the current negotiations would succeed, within the specified timeframe and result in the achievement of a just, lasting and comprehensive peace that would bring an end to the Israeli’s military occupation of the Palestinian and other occupied Arab lands.
The Non-Aligned Movement thus renews its calls, at this most critical juncture, for continued support and assistance to the Palestinian people in their legitimate, historic struggle for justice, dignity, peace and the exercise of their right to self-determination. NAM calls further for redoubling of international efforts, including by the Security Council and in line with our political, legal and moral obligations, towards the realization of these noble objectives, ushering in a new era of peace and stability in the Middle East.
Lebanon has suffered from consecutive Israeli attacks against its territory with heavy human and material toll followed by subsequent years of occupation and aggression. Unfortunately, still Israel continues to violate Lebanese airspace, intensifying its incursions over Lebanon. Such activities are a blatant violation of Lebanese sovereignty and the relevant international resolutions, particularly Security Council resolution 1701. The provisions of this resolution should be implemented in a manner that guarantees the consolidation of the foundations of stability and security in Lebanon and preventing Israel from its daily violations of Lebanese sovereignty.
Regarding the occupied Syrian Golan, the Movement condemns all the measures taken, by Israel, the occupying Power, to alter the legal, physical and demographic status of the occupied Syrian Golan that has been intensified after the outbreak of Syrian crisis. The Non-Aligned Movement demands, once again, that Israel abide by resolution 497 (1981) and withdraw fully from the occupied Syrian Golan to the borders of 4 June 1967, in implementation of resolutions 242 (1967) and 338 (1973).
In my national capacity, I would like to refer to what was stated by the representative of the Israeli regime against my country. It could be enough to quote from a Persian saying which says: “The rage and anger of your criminal and aggressor enemy is good indication that you are on the right track.”
I thank you Mr. President.