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UNITED
NATIONS
A

        General Assembly
A/68/PV.19
28 September 2013

Official Records
General Assembly
Sixty-eighth session
19th plenary meeting
Saturday, 28 September 2013, 3 p.m.
New York

President: Mr. Ashe ...........................................................(Antigua and Barbuda)

The meeting was called to order at 3 p.m.


Agenda item 8 (continued)

General debate

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The President: I have great pleasure in welcoming His Royal Highness Prince Haji Al-Muhtadee Billah, Crown Prince of Brunei Darussalam, and inviting him to address the General Assembly.

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Unfortunately, the options open to some people are severely limited. That is so when the basic, fundamental right of self-determination has been denied. We refer particularly to the people of Palestine, whom we believe can attest to that. Their legitimate struggle for a homeland of their own remains unresolved. Hence, we support the calls of the international community for intensified efforts towards realizing this basic right, which we take for granted today.

The date of 29 November 2012 was indeed a memorable day in the history of Palestine, when it was accorded observer State status in the United Nations (see A/67/PV.44). I would like once again to express our support for Palestine’s full membership and for its people’s legitimate struggle to exercise their right to their own independent and sovereign State.

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The Acting President: I now call on His Excellency Mr. Thongloun Sisoulith, Vice Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Lao People’s Democratic Republic.

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The international community must devote urgent attention to the issue of Palestine on the basis of the principle of creating the two independent States of Palestine and Israel living side by side in peace. In that regard, the Lao People’s Democratic Republic commends the efforts of Israel and Palestine to resume peace negotiations, which mark an important milestone for the promotion of peace in that region.

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The President: I now call on His Excellency Mr. Eamon Gilmore, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade of Ireland.

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Elsewhere in the Middle East, we also see the prospect of progress. In Ireland, we know what it takes to make peace after a protracted conflict. I want to acknowledge the work being done in the current direct talks between Israeli and Palestinian negotiators, which all who wish for peace must welcome. I want to commend in particular the determination and engagement of United States Secretary of State John Kerry, who has done so much to bring that about, and the leadership of President Abbas and Prime Minister Netanyahu, who have had to accept difficult choices to begin the process of negotiation. We all know, and they know, that many more difficult choices lie before them if they are to succeed and to secure a comprehensive peace settlement. They deserve all our support.

/...

The Acting President: I now call on His Excellency Mr. Manasseh Maelanga, Deputy Prime Minister of Solomon Islands.

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On Israel and Palestine, we support all international efforts for the two States to resume negotiations and achieve a just, lasting and sustainable peace.

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The Acting President: I now call on His Excellency Mr. Ahmed Teguedi, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Cooperation of Mauritania.

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The Arab-Israeli conflict is considered a source of hostility and a threat to peace and security in a vital and critical region of the world. It remains so in spite of the legal framework and general conditions for the settlement of that dispute that have been established over the years by a series of Security Council and General Assembly resolutions. Those foundations were recently further backed by the Arab Peace Initiative based on the land-for-peace principle. In spite of all of that, the conflict continues, as it has done for too long.

We welcome resolution 67/19, of 29 November 2012, whereby the General Assembly granted Palestine the status of non-Member observer State in the United Nations. We hope that that resolution will mark the beginning of a new era that will see justice done for the Palestinian people and their rights restored through the establishment of their independent and sovereign Sate along the 4 June 1967 borders, with East Jerusalem as its capital. That would put an end to the suffering of the Palestinian people, which dates back to the inception of our Organization.

Based on the need to ensure justice, credibility and equity in the relations between the two parties to that conflict, and out of respect for the relevant resolutions and decisions under international law, the international community should live up to its historic responsibilities with regard to Palestine. We reiterate our condemnation of the ongoing blockade against the Gaza Strip, and we condemn the massacres perpetrated by the Israeli war machine against Palestinian civilians and the destruction of their facilities. We welcome efforts, most recently by the United States Administration, seeking the resumption of negotiations between the two parties. We hope that those efforts will contribute to the realization of the Palestinian people’s simplest right: the establishment of their independent State.

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The Acting President: I now call on His Excellency Mr. Abubaker Al-Qirbi, Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Government of National Reconciliation of the Republic of Yemen.

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Conflicts and bloody events, especially in the Middle East, are contrary to the lofty goals of the United Nations, which is why the international community must revisit the structure and working methods of the Organization and make the reforms necessary to enable it to effectively discharge its responsibilities for the maintenance of international peace and security and to revitalize its role. In that regard, we should mention the despair and frustration of many Arab and Muslim nations over the failure to end the Israeli occupation of Palestine, arrive at a just solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and put a stop to all the occupying Power’s oppressive measures and practices and attempts to Judaize the holy city of Jerusalem, expand settlement activities, detain Palestinian citizens and excavate illegally around the Al-Aqsa Mosque.

/...

The meeting rose at 6.05 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 U-506. Corrections will be issued after the end of the session in a consolidated corrigendum.



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