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President: The Hon. Julian R. Hunte..............................................(Saint Lucia)
The meeting was called to order at 10.05 a.m.
Agenda item 9 (continued)
The President: I now give the floor to His Excellency The Honourable Elvin Nimrod, Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Trade of Grenada.
Mr. Nimrod (Grenada): ...
The Israeli-Palestinian conflict continues to escalate, and every effort must be made to return to the road map, as it remains the best hope for the resolution of the problem.
The President: I now call on His Excellency Mr. François Lonsény Fall, Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Guinea.
Mr. Fall (Guinea) (spoke in French): ...
The future of our continent is closely bound up with international peace and security, and so we will continue to express our profound concern about conflicts that cause upheavals in other parts of the world.
First, in the Middle East, the appointment of Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas, the publication of the Quartet’s road map and the establishment of a unilateral cease-fire by the Palestinian armed groups had given us grounds for hope. These hopes, unfortunately, are threatened by the resumption of the cycle of violence. We have together a historic duty to salvage peace. The international community and the Quartet must do everything to give a fresh impetus to the dialogue between the parties. For their part, Palestinians and Israelis have the obligation to honour their respective commitments, in order to win mutual trust.
My delegation is convinced that a comprehensive and lasting settlement of the crisis in the Middle East necessarily involves tackling the Lebanese and Syrian aspects and the implementation of the relevant resolutions of the Security Council. Guinea, which has always been at the forefront in defending legitimate struggles for just causes, hails the historic role of President Yasser Arafat in restoring the inalienable rights of the martyred people of Palestine. Here we reiterate our firm opposition to any attempt to undermine his political or physical integrity, and once again send him our sympathy and support. We also encourage the new Prime Minister of Palestine, Mr. Ahmed Qorei, to do his utmost to create favourable conditions for dialogue aiming at a durable resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
The President: I now give the floor to the Honourable Knowlson Gift, Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago.
Mr. Gift (Trinidad and Tobago): ...
Nowhere is there a more pressing need for peace and security than in the Middle East. Clearly, a just and lasting peace is in the interests of both the Palestinians and the Israelis, who have been constant witnesses to death and destruction in their respective societies and who have watched as their once promising economies have been devastated by the unceasing instability in the region. Peace continues to be elusive, notwithstanding the latest best efforts of the Quartet, whose road map for measured and reciprocal steps within a specific time frame enjoys the support of the overwhelming majority of the international community.
There can be no peace and prosperity for that region without the political will of leaders on both sides of the conflict. Neither can there be progress on the path of peace without focused and sustained effort on the part of the international community in providing the necessary political support to the parties directly involved. My delegation is of the opinion that, under the present circumstances, consideration should be given to deployment of a United Nations force so that realistic and mutually acceptable confidence-building measures can be put in place, thereby restoring some measure of security to Palestinians and Israelis alike.
The Acting President : I now give the floor to His Excellency Mr. Mamadou Bamba, Minister of State and Minister for Foreign Affairs of Côte d’Ivoire.
Mr. Bamba (Côte d’Ivoire) (spoke in French ): ...
In the Middle East, Côte d’Ivoire appeals for moderation on both sides and for compliance with the road map, which is the way back to peace in that part of the world.
In any event, law must always prevail over violence, and dialogue — under the aegis of the international community — must always be the favoured tool for resolving disputes.
The Acting President : I now give the floor to Her Excellency Ms. Klára Novotná, Chairperson of the Slovak Republic.
Ms. Novotná (Slovakia): ...
Ten years after Israelis and Palestinians astounded the world by signing the Oslo Accords, the two sides are again locked in a cycle of violence, attacks, counter-attacks and revenge. It is unfortunate that the latest wave of violence has come at a time when the road map had started to encourage feelings of hope.
Slovakia is deeply concerned over the deteriorating situation. Recent tragic and violent events have caused enormous suffering and resulted in many innocent victims. In the face of the current situation, both sides must act responsibly, with the utmost restraint, and consider carefully the tremendously negative consequences of a complete breakdown of the peace process. The only realistic way out of the impasse is the creation of a viable Palestinian State existing alongside Israel, with the security and survival of each guaranteed. Every effort has to be made to keep the road map on the table, because there is no other alternative. Both sides must fully and without further delay implement their obligations in accordance with the road map. Slovakia reiterates its support for the road map and sees the role of the Quartet in the peace process as irreplaceable and essential.
The President: I now give the floor to His Excellency Mr. Claude Morel, Chairman of the delegation of the Republic of Seychelles.
Mr. Morel (Seychelles): ...
The conflict in the Middle East has brought about too much suffering and destruction. My delegation supports the road map for peace and calls on all parties to the conflict to embark on genuine and substantive dialogue and negotiations in the interest of durable peace in the region. We reaffirm our belief in the rights of the Palestinian people to their own independent State, with clearly defined borders. We welcome all efforts in facilitating the search for an enduring solution to the conflict.
The meeting rose at 1.05 p.m.
This record contains the text of speeches delivered in English and of the interpretation of speeches delivered in the other languages. Corrections should be submitted to the original languages only. They should be incorporated in a copy of the record and sent under the signature of a member of the delegation concerned to the Chief of the Verbatim Reporting Service, room C-154A. Corrections will be issued after the end of the session in a consolidated corrigendum.