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Briefings by Chairmen of subsidiary bodies of the Security Council
The President (spoke in Russian ): I now give the floor to the representative of the Syrian Arab Republic.
Mr. Ja’afari (Syrian Arab Republic) (spoke in Arabic ): ...
The crimes committed by Israel against the Palestinian people in the occupied territories and against Syrian citizens in the occupied Syrian Golan are war crimes and constitute true terrorism. Here, I must point out Israel’s most recent innovations and contributions in the field of State terrorism. Israel has laid siege to the entire Palestinian population of Gaza, including women, children and the elderly. It has deprived that population of water, food, medicine and the freedom of movement and travel. Not satisfied with that, Israel followed up by killing the besieged population of Gaza through a barbaric and cruel aggression using the most modern weapons and internationally banned munitions.
If such outlaw practices are not terrorism, then what exactly is terrorism? Israeli terrorism has touched everyone without exception. The murder and destruction pay no heed to the humanity of the Palestinian citizen residing in his own home, the employees of the United Nations, or those seeking refuge in United Nations buildings and facilities.
As members of the Council know, the State terrorism carried out by Israel has destroyed facilities belonging to the United Nations in Gaza and killed those inside, Palestinians and international employees alike. The international consensus at the United Nations, both in New York and Geneva, which called for the creation of a fact-finding committee of the Human Rights Council and an investigative commission by decision of the Secretary-General, reflected the international moral and political consensus regarding Israel’s responsibility for the terrorist crimes carried out against the population of Gaza.
The logical question here is whether Israeli actions today — including the confiscation of property, the bulldozing of land, the uprooting of trees, the destruction of homes, the expulsion of residents, the creation and building of new settlements and the expansion of existing settlement — are actions that constitute real terrorism.
The President (spoke in Russian): I now give the floor to the representative of Israel.
Ms. Shalev (Israel): ...
On a broad level, my delegation believes that we must actively and robustly support the work of the counter-terrorism committees of the United Nations, as well as the work of Member States in this regard. Close cooperation and coordination among all three subsidiary bodies and the Counter-Terrorism Implementation Task Force (CTITF) is also of the utmost importance. With the relocation of the CTITF to the Department of Political Affairs, we hope that such integration will further augment and enhance cooperation.
Furthermore, the international community must address in a proactive and operative manner the threat posed by the transfer of weapons and capabilities by some Member States to terrorist organizations in our region. The danger emanating from the continuous smuggling of arms is evident in our region, where ongoing efforts by Iran and Syria provide terrorist organizations — in particular, Hamas in Gaza and Hizbollah in Lebanon — with sophisticated and deadly weapons.
This support — which constitutes a violation of numerous Security Council resolutions — not only threatens Israel, but also undermines the stability of our entire region. This phenomenon and its consequences are recognized by many Governments in our region, and they must be confronted by the international community in the strongest possible terms.
The President (spoke in Russian ): The representative of the Syrian Arab Republic has asked for the floor to make an additional statement. I invite him to take a seat at the Council table and to make his statement.
Mr. Ja’afari (Syrian Arab Republic) (spoke in Arabic ): I apologize for taking the floor once again at the conclusion of today’s important meeting of the Security Council.
Nothing can justify terrorism. My country resolutely denounces terrorism, regardless of its manifestations, the motives behind it or the justifications made for it. That is the consensus legal position of the international community endorsed in the Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy. My country actively participates in the Strategy and played a part in its adoption.
With regard to the nonsensical and futile attempt of the representative of Israel to confuse the international phenomenon of terrorism, which everyone condemns, with the right of peoples under foreign occupation to resist, it deceives no one. As the Council is well aware, the main objective of that effort is to distract attention from the terrorism carried out by the State of Israel in occupied Palestinian territories, occupied Syrian Golan and the remaining occupied Lebanese territories.
In a historic resolution, the United Nations has acknowledged that foreign occupation is the worst form of aggression. Moreover, the Charter guarantees the right of peoples to freedom and liberation from occupation and colonization. Thus, the representative of Israel’s insistence that Palestinian refugees — who have been expelled from their homeland by Israeli terrorism and dispersed in neighbouring territories and throughout the world — should be considered to be terrorists is a futile attempt to push the clock back and to restore a colonialist mentality to international relations. This undermines the United Nations Charter.
The millions of Palestinian refugees in neighbouring countries and throughout the world have the right of return to their homeland, in accordance with General Assembly resolution 194 (III) of 1948. My country and the overwhelming majority of Members of this international Organization support the right of those Palestinian refugees to return to their homeland. My country insists on the full implementation of the rules of international law and the relevant United Nations resolutions.
The world has witnessed the extent of Israeli State terrorism against the Palestinian population in Gaza, against the Lebanese and against the Syrian residents of the occupied Syrian Golan. The United Nations has adopted hundreds of resolutions that condemn Israeli occupation and call for an end to it.
Memories are not so short, and everyone knows perfectly well the true face of terrorism in our region. The United Nations archives are full of evidence and proof of the extent of Israeli terrorism. If that terrorism had not enjoyed protection by some parties through the privilege of the veto, wielded on dozens of occasions, the representatives of Israel would be most reluctant to appear before the Security Council and address it on terrorism. They are the masters and the custodians of terrorism.
The President (spoke in Russian ): There are no further speakers inscribed on my list. The Security Council has thus concluded the present stage of its consideration of the item on its agenda.
The meeting rose at 5.10 p.m.
This record contains the text of speeches delivered in English and of the interpretation of speeches delivered in the other languages. The final text will be printed in the Official Records of the Security Council . 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.