|CHAPTER II: REGIONAL AND SUB-REGIONAL POLITICAL ISSUES|
122. The Ministers reaffirmed their support for the Middle East peace process based on Security Council resolutions 242,338, 425, 1397 and 1515 and on the principle of land for peace. They rejected attempts to alter the terms of reference of the peace process and further rejected the imposition of unilateral measures and plans aimed at imposing an unlawful unilateral solution by Israel, the occupying Power. They stressed the need for a resumption of direct and substantial negotiations between the parties for the achievement of a comprehensive, just lasting and peaceful settlement, based on the relevant UN resolutions and in accordance with the rules and principles of international law enshrined therein. In this regard, they reiterated the necessity and urgency of ending the prolonged and unlawful Israeli occupation of all of the Arab territories occupied since 1967. They further reaffirmed their long-standing position in support of the establishment of the independent State of Palestine in all of the Palestinian Territory occupied by Israel in 1967, including East Jerusalem as its capital.
123. The Ministers accordingly called for the intensification of efforts by the international community for a revival of the peace process and for ensuring respect of international law, including international humanitarian law and human rights law. They stressed the need for the urgent resumption of the peace process on all tracks in the Middle East towards the attainment of a comprehensive peace and regional stability. They further stressed in specific the roles and responsibilities undertaken by the Quartet and called upon the Quartet to exert serious efforts and actions to bring about a resumption of negotiations between the Israeli and Palestinian sides towards the honest and good-will implementation of the Road Map for the achievement of a permanent two State solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. They called upon the Quartet to engage the Security Council, considering the Council's Charter authority and responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security. They reaffirmed their support for the Arab Peace Initiative adopted by the 14th Arab Summit in Beirut in 2002, welcomed the decision of the recent Arab Summit in Khartoum to reinvigorate the Arab Peace Initiative, and further called for the intensification of efforts towards that end. They urged the Security Council as well to act upon that initiative towards achieving a just and comprehensive peace in the Middle East.
Occupied Palestinian Territory. including East Jerusalem
124. The Ministers reaffirmed their adherence to the positions concerning Palestine adopted by the XIV NAM Ministerial Conference, held in Durban, 17 to 19 August 2004, as the guidelines for the Non-Aligned Countries with regard to the question of Palestine, and further reaffirmed as well their adherence to the positions set forth in the Statement on Palestine adopted by the XIII NAM Summit, held in Kuala Lumpur, 20 to 25 February 2003.
125. The Ministers expressed their deep regret at the lack of progress made to address the major issues and follow-up core positions regarding the question of Palestine and further expressed their concern about the serious deterioration of the situation. They also expressed in particular their grave concern at the extremely difficult political, economic, social and humanitarian situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, as a result of continuing unlawful policies and practices by Israel, the occupying Power. They condemned the ongoing Israeli military campaign against the Palestinian people by which the occupying Power has continued to commit grave human rights violations and war crimes, including the killing and injury of Palestinian civilians by use of excessive and indiscriminate force as well as the continued practice of extrajudicial executions, the destruction of properties, infrastructure and agricultural lands; and the detention and imprisonment of thousands of Palestinians. They demanded that Israel, the occupying Power, immediately cease all such violations of international law; including international humanitarian and human rights law.
126. The Ministers condemned Israel's continued imposition of collective punishment upon the Palestinian people, including in particular the severe restrictions on the movement of persons and goods via closures and hundreds of checkpoints, some of which have been transformed into structures similar to permanent international border crossings, including at Qalandiya and Bethlehem, in the middle of the Occupied Palestinian Territory, away from the 1967 border (Green Line). They stressed that such unlawful Israeli practices. are in effect strangling the Palestinian economy and society, are physically severing the northern, central and southern parts of the Occupied Palestinian Territory into separate and isolated areas, and are undermining its. territorial integrity and contiguity. In this connection, they reiterated their grave concern and strong condemnations regarding Israel's continuing intensive campaign of settler colonialism, including vast land confiscations and the construction and expansion of illegal settlements, and condemned Israel's intentions to proceed with the dangerous and illegal E-l plan in and around Occupied East Jerusalem as well as its declared plans to illegally annex the Jordan Valley.
127. The Ministers reiterated their condemnation of Israel's continuing construction of the Wall throughout the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including in and around East Jerusalem, in flagrant violation of international law and disregard for the Advisory Opinion of the International Court of Justice of 9 July 2004 and General Assembly resolution ES-I0/15 of 20 July 2004. They expressed their deep concern at the physical, economic and social devastation being caused by the Wall, which is dissecting the Territory into several walled and isolated cantons and severing Occupied East Jerusalem from the rest of the Occupied Palestinian Territory. In this regard, they further reiterated that, if completed, the Wall, along with Israel's illegal settlement campaign and fortification of illegal checkpoints, will render the two-State solution impossible to achieve. They therefore stressed the urgency and obligation of respect for and compliance with both the Advisory Opinion and resolution ES-10/1S of 20 July 2004 by Israel, the occupying power, by Member States and by the United Nations. They further expressed their disappointment at the lack of progress made by the United Nations Secretariat in establishing the register of damages caused by the Wall, as called for in General Assembly resolution ES-10/1S, and called upon the Secretary-General to exert all necessary efforts to expedite this matter.
128. The Ministers expressed their regret at the deepening economic, social and humanitarian crisis in the Gaza Strip following the implementation of Israel's unilateral disengagement plan. While taking note of the withdrawal of Israeli forces from within Gaza and the dismantlement of settlements therein, as well as from parts of the northern West Bank, they noted with alarm that Israel continues to carry out military attacks against civilian areas in the Gaza Strip and to impose policies causing continued economic and social deprivation in Gaza. In this connection, they stressed the dangers of the Israeli Government's continuing unilateral measures in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and further expressed their rejection of its declared intentions to proceed with further unlawful unilateral plans in the West Bank. They reaffirmed that such plans are unlawful, unacceptable and cannot alter the terms of reference of the peace process nor negate the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people. Accordingly, they called for intensification of efforts by the Quartet and the entire international community to revive the peace process and promote negotiations between the two sides and to pursue the full and honest implementation of the Road Map towards ending the occupation of the Palestinian Territory that was occupied in 1967, including East Jerusalem, and thus realizing the two-State solution. They called on the Quartet to engage the Security Council, considering the Council's Charter authority and responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security. They also emphasised the importance of the decisions of the recent Arab Summit in Khartoum, especially the call for reinvigoration of the Arab Peace Initiative adopted in Beirut in 2002.
129. The Ministers expressed deep concern at the intensifying hardships being faced by the Palestinian people during the current period following the 25 January 2006 elections for the Palestinian Legislative Council and the increasing financial and political isolation being imposed on the Palestinian Authority by some Members of the international community in the aftermath of the elections. They called upon Israel, the occupying Power, to refrain from withholding tax revenue transfers due to the Palestinian Authority, which is deepening the financial crisis of the Authority. They rejected the punishment of the Palestinian people for the democratic election of their representatives, and instead reaffirmed the necessity of upholding international law, international humanitarian law, including in particular the Fourth Geneva Convention, and the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations with regard to the question of Palestine under all circumstances. They further reaffirmed the permanent responsibility of the United Nations, including the General Assembly and the Security Council, towards the question of Palestine until it is resolved in all its aspects on the basis of international law, including a just resolution to the plight of the refugees in accordance with General Assembly resolution 194. They called upon the United Nations not to reward illegal positions and intransigence and to increase its efforts towards the achievement of a just, comprehensive and lasting peace settlement, based on the two-State solution, and the achievement of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people. The Ministers further reaffirmed their commitment to a peaceful solution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and to the right of the Palestinian people to exercise self-determination and sovereignty in their independent State of Palestine, on the basis of the 1967 borders, with East Jerusalem as its capital.
130. The Ministers reaffirmed that all measures and actions taken, or to be taken by Israel, the occupying power, such as its illegal decision of 14 December 1981 that purports to alter. the legal, physical and demographic status of the occupied Syrian Golan and its institutional structure, as well as the Israeli measures to apply its jurisdiction and administration there, are null and void and have no legal effect. They further reaffirmed that all such measures and actions, including the illegality of Israeli settlement construction and expansion activities in the Occupied Syrian Golan since 1967, constitute a flagrant violation of international law, international conventions, the Charter and decisions of the United Nations, particularly Security Council resolution 497 (1981), the Fourth Geneva Convention of 12 August 1949 on the Protection of Civilians in Time of War, and the defiance of will of the international community. They reiterated the Movement's demand that Israel comply with Security Council resolution 497 (1981) and withdraw fully from the occupied Syrian Golan, to the lines of 4 June 1967, in implementation of Security Council resolutions 242 and 338, and that Israel adheres to the Madrid terms of reference based on the principle of land for peace, which are in their entirety considered to be a primary and basic element in the negotiation process that should be adhered to, including the immediate commencement of the demarcation of the 4 June 1967 line.
131. The Ministers reaffirmed the Movement's unwavering support and solidarity with the Syrian just demand and rights to restore the full Syrian sovereignty over the occupied Syrian Golan on the basis of the terms of reference of the Arab Peace Initiative, the Madrid Peace Process, the UN Security Council resolutions, as well as the principle of land for peace. They again demanded that Israel respects all commitments and pledges it entered into with the aim of laying down the basis for a substantive progress on the Syrian-Israeli track.
Remaining Occupied Lands in Southern Lebanon
132. The Ministers expressed their support for Lebanon in its efforts to regain the Lebanese territories of Chebaa farmlands and the Kfarshouba Hills occupied by Israel, according to Security Council Resolution 425 of 1978, and also supported the contacts undertaken by the Lebanese Government to establish the Lebanese identity of the Chebaa farmlands, and to delineate them according to rules and procedures applied by the United Nations, while asserting the legitimate right of Lebanon to resist the Israeli occupation of the remaining Lebanese occupied territories, in accordance with international law and relevant UN resolutions, and to liberate those lands and defend the Lebanese dignity in the face of Israeli aggression. They also called for the immediate ending of the on-going Israeli violations of the Lebanese sovereignty and territorial integrity, and for the release of all Lebanese detained in Israeli prisons, in defiance of the Fourth Geneva Conventions of 1949 and its relevant protocols, and for Israel to submit the comprehensive maps of the minefields it has laid down in Lebanese territories during its occupation, they reiterated their support for the demining assistance in South Lebanon. They condemned the Israeli threats, recent aggressions and violations on the Lebanese territories and expressed their solidarity with Lebanon in this respect.