UN official calls for action on the Israeli-Palestinian issueListen /
Action must be taken on the Israeli-Palestinian issue, a top UN official told the UN Security Council on Wednesday.
Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs Jeffrey Feltman said the fragile hope triggered by the renewed US engagement must be sustained and translated into serious efforts by the parties. He said the desire for peace needs to be cultivated by early measures to reverse negative trends on the ground, and build trust. But he added that much depends on whether the parties have the political will and exercise the bold leadership required to create conditions conducive for the resumption of a political process, despite the considerable differences between them.
According to Under Secretary-General Feltman, clashes between Israeli settlers and Palestinians also continued and the reporting period registered continued demolitions and related displacements in Area C and East Jerusalem.
“We remain deeply troubled by continued developments with respect to settlement activity. Let me reiterate unequivocally the United Nations' consistent position that settlement activity violates international law. Settlement activity further undermines Palestinians' confidence in the viability of the two-state solution. The Secretary-General is particularly worried about reports suggesting that the Israeli Minister of Housing has predicted the construction within a year and a half of housing units in E1 area of the West Bank.”
Under-Secretary-General Feltman repeated the Secretary-General's view that there is now an opening to develop a meaningful initiative to achieve the negotiated two-state solution that will best serve the interests, rights and aspirations of both Israelis and Palestinians.
Donn Bobb, United Nations.