The President (spoke in French): I now give the floor to the Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People.
Mr. Diallo (spoke in French): I should like to express my warmest congratulations to you, Sir, on the assumption of the presidency of the Security Council by your country this month. There is no doubt that on the day when the results are assessed, the international community will remember the positive momentum that you gave to this body.
I appreciate this opportunity to share with the Council the conclusions of recent deliberations held by the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People on the issue that is central to its mandate. Meeting on 17 and 18 April in Caracas, Venezuela, at the invitation of the Venezuelan Government, our Committee called on the international community to re-engage with Israel and the State of Palestine and to remove the obstacles to negotiation. We called for a revitalized Quartet, which should coordinate with key regional players and report to the Council on its efforts and progress made.
In Caracas, we strongly condemned settlements and demanded their removal. We also asked the Council and the high contracting parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention to uphold their responsibilities to ensure a end to settlement construction in the occupied Palestinian territories. The meeting in Caracas deplored the abuse of Palestinian prisoners, who are often detained without trial, leading to hunger strikes and deaths. Participating delegations also demanded the immediate release of all prisoners, including children, women, elected officials, pre-Oslo detainees, and those held without trial.
We expressed optimism that the passage of General Assembly resolution 67/19 would accelerate the momentum in the Council towards full United Nations membership for the State of Palestine. We considered the vote on 29 November 2012 was a kind of vote of confidence, as Palestine meets the Charter criteria for statehood and is ready and willing to assume the responsibilities that come with United Nations membership. That is why we called on States that recognize Palestine at the United Nations to establish diplomatic relations with it.
We confirmed that the State of Palestine may avail itself of the dispute-settlement mechanisms provided by the International Court of Justice, and supported any action by Palestine to participate fully, effectively and constructively in the work of the United Nations and its conferences, including, for example, by signing treaties and conventions, including the Rome Statute. We also called on the international community unequivocally to support Palestinian unity.
Finally, at the Caracas meeting it was decided to ask the General Assembly to proclaim an international year of solidarity with the Palestinian people in 2014 and to launch a global campaign to bring an end to the Israeli occupation of the occupied territories, realize the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, and promote a just, lasting, and comprehensive negotiated peace. Those, Sir, are the decisions that we took in Caracas and that the Committee, through me, wishes to convey to you.