Archive for the 'United Nations' Category

Hamas: UN Secretary General’s visit to Gaza welcome

PRESS RELEASE
HAMAS

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Hamas welcomes the UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres’s visit to the Gaza Strip, deeming the visit of the high-profile international figure an indication to the special status of the Gaza Strip in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, and to the deteriorating living conditions inside the strip given the relentless long Israeli blockade imposed on it.

It is highly regrettable this siege persists before the eyes of the international community and through the international Quartet. This matter necessitates that the Secretary General meet with families of the Palestinian detainees in the Israeli prisons, patients deprived of travelling to receive medical treatment, owners of destroyed houses and victims of the Israeli assaults and siege. As Hamas follows with interest this visit, it requests the Secretary-General to:

1. Make all possible efforts to lift the Gaza siege and end the suffering of two million Palestinians living in the world’s largest open-air prison.

2. Approve and fund the relief and development programs to save the Gaza Strip from the deteriorating humanitarian crisis.

3. Pressure the Israeli occupation to end their violations against the Palestinian people, the Islamic and Christian holy sites and, and to work immediately to end the Israeli occupation’s violations against the Palestinian detainees in the Israeli prisons.

Fawzi Barhoum

Spokesperson of The Islamic Movement of Hamas

Erasing the UN

Richard Falk
Opinion

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Donald Trump has articulated clearly, if somewhat vaguely and incoherently, his anti-globalist, anti-UN approach on foreign policy. For instance, in late February he told a right-wing audience at the Conservative Political Action Conference that “there is no such thing as a global anthem, a global currency, or a global flag. This is the United States that I am representing. I am not representing the globe.” A similar sentiment was expressed to Congress a few days later in a tone of voice and choice of words praised by media wonks as ‘presidential.’ On this occasion Trump said, “[m]y job is not to represent the world. My job is to represent the United States of America.” Such rhetoric coming from a normal American leader would probably be interpreted as an expression of geopolitical humility, implicitly rejecting the standard insistence on American exceptionalism, exemplified in recent times by the project to create and maintain the first global state in human history.

This potentially self-limiting language might even be understood as renouncing earlier claims to assert American global leadership as the keystone of world order. George W. Bush in 2002 gave this bold leadership claim a sharp edge when he insisted the that only the US model of market-based constitutionalism was a legitimate form of governance for sovereign states in the 21st century. Or even more grandiosely, in the spirit of Michael Mandelbaum and Thomas Friedman, that the United States as a consequence of its martial strength, technological prowess, democratic values and institutions, and skills of leadership provides the world with the benevolent reality of virtual ‘world government.’ Let’s face it, Donald Trump is not a normal political leader, nor is he someone disposed to embrace humility in any form, so we should take his pledge to represent American interests while leaving the world to fend for itself with many grains of salt, especially if we consider the specifics of the Trump worldview. What Trump seems to be offering is maximum disengagement from international and global arrangements designed to institutionalize cooperation among sovereign states, and that is where the UN figures in Trump’s unfolding game plan. Read more »

Hamas condemns UNSG Guterres’ statement about Jewish temple

Hamas

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Hamas spokesman, Faouzi Barhoum, issued the following statement:

Hamas considers the statement of UN Secretary General António Guterres regarding a Jewish Temple in Jerusalem a claim that fabricates history, misleads public opinion, and a contravention of UNESCO’s resolution which stipulate that Al-Aqsa Mosque is a Muslim holy site that Jews have no right in.

Guterres’ statement endorses Israel’s radical, racist policies, and legitimizes the Judaization of Jerusalem and Al-Aqsa Mosque. The Secretary General of the International organization should work to protect Palestinian rights and support our just cause. Guterres should not be biased towards the Israelis nor should he encourage them towards more violations and extremism at the expense of Palestinians and Muslims.

Hamas condemns and rejects Guterres’ irresponsible statements, and calls upon all Palestinian people and parties for more steadfastness in the defence of their rights and just cause. Hamas also calls upon Muslims and Arabs to support Palestinian resistance, rights, just cause, defence of their holy places, and confronting any schemes against Jerusalem and Al-Aqsa Mosque.

Condemning Israeli Settlement Expansion: UN Security Council Resolution 2334 and Secretary Kerry’s Speech

Richard Falk

Photo: AP

Photo: AP

On December 23, 2016 the UN Security Council by a vote of 14-0 adopted Resolution 2334, notably with the United States abstaining, condemning Israeli settlement expansion. It was treated as big news in the West because the Obama presidency had finally in its last weeks in office refused to use its veto to protect Israel from UN censure. Especially in the United States, the media focused on the meaning of this diplomatic move, wondering aloud whether it was motivated by Obama’s lingering anger over Netanyahu’s effort to torpedo his efforts to reach agreement with Iran in 2014 on its nuclear program or meant to challenge the incoming Trump leadership to deal responsibly with the unresolved Israel/Palestine conflict and also by indirection to mount criticism of Trump’s reckless pledge to move the American embassy to Jerusalem and his apparent readiness to side openly with extremist Israeli leadership while in the White House.

The likely lasting importance of the resolution is the evidence of a strong international consensus embodied in the 14-0 vote, with only the US abstention preventing unanimity. To bring together China, Russia, France, and the UK on an initiative tabled by Senegal, Malaysia, and Venezuela, is sending Israel and Washington a clear message that despite the adverse developments of recent years in the Middle East the world will not forget the Palestinians, or their struggle. It is also significant that the resolution calls upon the new UN Secretary General to report back to the SC every three months on progress implementing the resolution and explicitly keeps the Council seized of the issue. Such provisions reinforce the impression that the unresolved Israel/Palestine conflict will remain on the UN policy agenda in the months ahead, which by itself is extremely irritating to Israel. Read more »

UNSC Vote – Palestine’s options

Professor Mazin Qumsiyeh

Will Mahmoud Abbas turn success into failure (again) or will he finally show backbone to use the UNSC resolution to save what remains of Palestine?

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DEDICATION

This post is dedicated to Mohammad Al-Ghaz and all similar suffering children of Gaza. Mohammad was interviewed a year ago while selling newspapers in the streets. He was asked what he wishes for the new year 2016 and he impulsively answered “like die.” He went on to explain that his life is so miserable and he cannot go to school and has to work hard to find food for his family. Mohammad got his wish this Christmas season as he slipped on the roof of a four story building as he was trying to get some wood (video in Arabic here). The UN says Gaza will be uninhabitable by 2020. The two million people of Gaza including 1 million children are threatened with massive deaths (genocide). Please remember these one million children who are losing hope in humanity and do something to end Israeli apartheid. And of course the over 400 million children in the world who go to sleep hungry like those Palestinians in Gaza. Read more »

Cuba still pursuing Security Council over Palestine

Prensa Latina

Cuba has once again denounced the UN Security Council’s failure to act in response to Israeli attacks against the Palestinian people, despite global support for the occupied Arab nation’s cause, reported Prensa Latina.

Photo: Telesur

Photo: Telesur

In an open debate on the situation in the Middle East, Cuba’s permanent representative, Ana Silvia Rodríguez, denounced the Security Council’s failure to adopt a single resolution demanding Israel end its aggressive policies and colonial practices against the Palestinian people.

“The council’s failure to take action in the face of such acts is alarming. It is unacceptable that the Security Council should continue be held hostage by the veto, or the threat of veto, by the United States, preventing the organisation from fulfilling its responsibility and protecting the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people,” she stated.

The ambassador reiterated Cuba’s call for the organisation to fulfill the responsibility afforded it by the UN Charter to maintain peace and international security, highlighting that it must adopt decisions demanding that Israel immediately cease its occupation of the West Bank, including West Jerusalem, and the blockade of the Gaza Strip. Read more »

Cuba reiterates solidarity with Palestine and calls for peace

Granma

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Cuba has called in Geneva for a definitive, just and lasting peace for all peoples of the Middle East, noting that in this context the Palestinian cause cannot continue to be ignored.

Speaking at a UN international conference in support of Palestinian-Israeli peace, Anayansi Rodríguez, Cuba’s permanent representative at the UN in this city, noted that the island recognized efforts undertaken to date toward resolving the situation.

She highlighted the need for a genuinely viable and sustainable solution, which must include an end to Israeli occupation, promote peaceful co-existence between two independent states, on the basis of the establishment of Palestine as a sovereign state according to its pre-1967 borders, with East Jerusalem as its capital, as well as a just solution to the issue of Palestine refugees.

‘We express our full support for Palestine’s right to become a member of the United Nations and we deplore the fact that this continues to be blocked by allies of Israel which, through their silence and compliant attitude, ensure the impunity of the former and continuation of the status quo, which is unacceptable,’ she stated. Read more »

PFLP denounces election of “Israel” to presidency of UN Legal Committee

Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine
Press Release

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The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine denounced the election of “Israel” to the presidency of the United Nations Legal Committee, amid globalized imperialist domination and its alliance with the Zionist movement, and amid the Arab conditions of unprecedented sectarian conflicts, disintegration and dependency, and the cooperation, normalization and coordination with the enemy on the part of reactionary Arab states.

The Front notes that this decision is an attack on any concept of international law or justice, encouraging and rewarding a state that openly violates the UN Charter and all forms of international humanitarian and human rights law, and even attacks the UN in order to perpetuate its occupation of Palestine, with a racist and fascist nature and policy, and rejecting outright all international decisions and resolutions on the rights of the Palestinian people to return, self-determination and independence.

The Front concluded that this action is a reward for the Zionist state and its attacks on the Palestinian people, and that its election to the presidency of the UN Legal Committee will be used to commit more crimes against the Palestinian people, more violations of international law, and the continued occupation of Palestine and other Arab lands.

Hamas slams proposed Israeli presidency of UN Law Committee

PRESS STATEMENT
HAMAS

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The Islamic Resistance Movement Hamas rejected the nomination of Israel for the presidency of the UN General Assembly Sixth Law Committee.

In a press release on Monday, Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri slammed the nomination as shameful and disrespectful to UN rules and bylaws.

“This nomination encourages the occupation to continue its terrorist policies against the Palestinian people,” he stated, calling on the United Nations to retract the catastrophic nomination.

According to protocol, the UN Committee’s presidency is taken by alternation among groups, and this year is the turn of the group of Western Europe (WEOG) which is nominating Israel.

OCHA Press Briefing on Palestinian journalist, hunger striker Mohammed Al-Qiq

PRESS BRIEFING
OCHA

5 February 2016
Spokesperson for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights: Cécile Pouilly
Location: Geneva
Subject: Israel

We are extremely concerned at the rapidly deteriorating health of Mohammed Al-Qiq, a Palestinian journalist who is on hunger strike in Israel to protest against his administrative detention and the ill-treatment he alleges since his arrest on 21 November 2015.

Mr Al-Qiq has been on hunger strike for over 70 days and is reportedly in a very dangerous condition. His doctors have informed him of the possibility of irreversible damage to his health.

Yesterday, the Israeli High Court decided to suspend his administrative detention until he regains his health and is able to leave hospital, at which point the order could be applied again on the basis that he becomes a security threat.

We reiterate our concerns at the situation of Palestinian administrative detainees who are held without charge or trial by the Israeli authorities, often on the basis of secret evidence, for periods of up to six months which are extendable indefinitely.

We call, once again, upon the Israeli authorities to end their practice of administrative detention and to either release immediately or promptly charge and prosecute all administrative detainees, with all the judicial guarantees required by international human rights law and standards.

We also urge the Israeli authorities to investigate all allegations of ill-treatment in an independent, prompt and thorough manner.

‘Don’t shoot the messenger,’ Ban fires back at Israeli criticism

EUROPAL Forum

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United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon called Israeli criticism of attacks on its settlement policy unsustainable in an opinion piece published Sunday by The New York Times, doubling down on comments earlier in the week that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said encouraged terrorism.

In the piece entitled, “Don’t Shoot the Messenger, Israel,” Ban reiterates many of his earlier comments to Security Council Tuesday, calling Israeli settlement activity “an affront to the Palestinian people,” adding that “it is human nature to resist occupation.”

He also called for a freeze on settlement activity, which most of the international community views Israeli settlements in the West Bank as illegal or illegitimate.

“Criticism of the United Nations — or attacks against me — comes with the territory. But when heartfelt concerns about shortsighted or morally damaging policies emanate from so many sources, including Israel’s closest friends, it cannot be sustainable to keep lashing out at every well-intentioned critic,” Ban wrote. Read more »

Open letter to NZ ambassador to UN re draft Palestine resolution

OPEN LETTER
Dr Vacy Vlazna

Ambassador Gerard van Bohemen
New Zealand Permanent Mission to the UN

Mr Ambassador

The reprehensible draft ‘resolution‘ circulated by New Zealand is so blatantly biased against the Palestinian people that it proffers, in this instance, the correct diplomatic protocol that NZ minds it’s own business given it is an apologist and morally blind supporter of Israel by its repeated mantra that “Israel has a right to defend itself.”

In the ‘resolution’, NZ, like all western governments, obsequiously parrots zionist propaganda:

NZ normalises Israeli atrocities by presenting Israel and Palestine as equal perpetrators and equal victims and by pushing the demand that Palestine gives up its endeavour for justice in the International Criminal Court thus letting Israel off scott free for its monstrous war crimes and crimes against humanity.

While NZ demands that Israel freezes its settlement expansion, it absurdly promotes the farce of negotiations that expand settlements. There is no demand by NZ that the zionist infiltrators leave the present settlements that have illegally expropriated half of the remaining Palestinian West Bank.

NZ obediently keeps up the pretence of a two state solution when Netanyahu has repeatedly ruled out Palestinian sovereignty:

“At the height of the 2014 Gaza war, Netanyahu revealed that he doesn’t envision Palestinian sovereignty in the West Bank any time soon. “I think the Israeli people understand now what I always say: that there cannot be a situation, under any agreement, in which we relinquish security control of the territory west of the River Jordan,” he said at a press conference in Jerusalem. In other words: no withdrawal and no Palestinian sovereignty, which means no state of Palestine.

A few months later, Netanyahu said, in a much quoted interview on the eve of the March 17 election, that, “indeed,” no Palestinian state would be created under his leadership.”

And to add extra ridicule to the ridiculous, NZ calls on the same incompetent clowns “the Quartet (United States, Russia, United Nations and European Union), Security Council members and Arab states” to maintain the posturing of the nihilistic negotiations.

So what can the people of Palestine expect from a flunkey state that belongs to the Impunity- for- Israel’s- War- Crimes Club?

…the same old, same old betrayal of Palestinian families and the betrayal of NZ’s own obligations as a High Contracting Party to the Geneva Conventions to protect and uphold Palestinian political and human rights.

This dishonourable ‘resolution’ comes at a time when Palestinian children and youth are being extrajudicially executed in the street for their courageous efforts to uphold their rights while NZ lets them down and, in doing so, shames the decency of the people of New Zealand.

Disgusted

Dr Vacy Vlazna
Australia

NOT EVEN SAFE IN THEIR OWN TERRITORY

Khalil Omar Othman, 15, killed near the Gaza border

Khalil Omar Othman, 15, killed in Gaza by direct fire from Israeli soldiers firing across the border

Hamas slams Ki-Moon over biased remarks

PRESS RELEASE
Hamas

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Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri stated Wednesday that UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon’s remarks are prejudiced in favour of the Israeli occupation and are at odds with international law.

In a facebook statement Abu Zuhri said that Ki-Moon equates murderous settlers with Palestinians who are defending themselves, and called on Palestinians to continue their intifada, saying they should not fall for attempts to thwart their uprising.

In a meeting with the occupation’s PM Netanyahu on Tuesday, Ban Ki-Moon stated that he deplores what he said were “random terror attacks against Israeli civilians.” His remarks were met by anger from Palestinians, who said they overlooked their suffering and ignored the root causes of the situation.

Hamas on Abbas’ UNGA speech

Press Statement
Hamas

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First of all Hamas reiterates its rejection of Oslo and the concessions it entails, and renews its call for removing this page from the history of our people.

Despite that Abbas consulted none of our people’s acting forces while formulating his speech, and in spite of the fact that Abbas addressed the whole world apart from his partners at home, we put down our objective notes on the speech:

First: The speech came, in the most part, emotional and submissive, and did not rely on our people’s strong cards, and consequently the results will not differ from those of previous speeches.

Second: Abbas’s announcement that the PA will not remain committed to the agreements to which the Zionist enemy is not adhering is the demand of the Palestinian people and all the free peoples of the world, but the credibility of this announcement remains subject to its implementation on the ground, which must rise to the level of the Palestinian hopes and suffering.

The credibility of Abbas’s position relies on the following:

– The official announcing the end of Oslo, and rescinding recognition of the Zionist enemy.
– The immediate ceasing of security coordination, and unleashing resistance in the occupied West Bank.
– Stopping all political arrests, and the immediate release of all detainees.
– The immediate implementation of reconciliation accord s, holding a PLO leadership meeting, forming a national unity government, and working on lifting the siege on Gaza.
– Pursuing the Israeli war criminals and bringing them before the International Criminal Court.

The Islamic Resistance Movement Hamas

Wednesday 30 September 2015

End of mission statement of the UN Special Committee to Investigate Israeli Practices

PRESS STATEMENT

Illegal settlements in the West Bank

Illegal settlements in the West Bank

GENEVA / AMMAN (10 August 2015) – The UN Special Committee to Investigate Israeli Practices Affecting the Human Rights of the Palestinian People and Other Arabs of the Occupied Territories met with a range of civil society groups and Palestinian officials during their annual fact-finding visit to Amman (4-8 August 2015).

During the visit, representations were made on a wide range of issues affecting the Palestinian and Syrian people in the occupied territories. During the course of these representations a large number of civil society organizations expressed alarm over the escalating violence in the occupied Palestinian territories, in particular the recent incident in the village of Duma, where an 18 month old Palestinian baby died following the fire-bombing of the house by Israeli settlers. The Committee was also informed that the father of the baby, who has sustained serious injuries, subsequently died on 8 August.

It was apparent from the testimonies that the root cause of the escalating violence is the continuing policy of settlement expansion and the climate of impunity relating to the activities of the settlers. Read more »

UNRWA Gaza Situation Report 104

UNRWA Newsroom

UNRWA meeting in Gaza

UNRWA meeting in Gaza

To further explain the dire financial situation of the Agency, UNRWA’s Deputy Commissioner-General, Sandra Mitchell, visited Gaza on 2 and 3 August to meet beneficiary representatives as well as UNRWA staff members and personnel, including the Local Staff Union.

The Deputy Commissioner-General explained the crisis’ potential consequences for beneficiaries and the efforts UNRWA is undertaking to bridge the current deficit of US$ 101 million of its General Fund. In a town hall meeting with staff members, she stated that UNRWA is “here to stay” until a “just and fair solution for Palestine refugees is found.” Furthermore, the Deputy Commissioner-General explained that due to the deficit, the Agency may be forced to temporarily suspend education services but in that case, life-saving services would remain a top priority. Read more »

UN Economic and Social Council Adopts Resolution condemning Israeli Occupation

Edited from a UNISPAL Press Release

Palestinian workers lining up at an Israeli checkpoint to get to work (Photo: CJPP)

Palestinian workers lining up at an Israeli checkpoint to get to work (Photo: CJPP)

At the opening sessions of the United Nations Economic and Social Council’s 2015 Coordination and Management meeting on 20 July, the Council adopted a resolution on “Economic and social repercussions of the Israeli occupation on the living conditions of the Palestinian people in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and the Arab population in the occupied Syrian Golan”, by a vote of 42 in favour to 2 against (Australia, United States) with 2 abstentions (Honduras, Panama).

Overview

TARIK ALAMI, Director of the Emerging and Conflict Related Issues Section of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA), said Israeli policies and practices continued to violate international human rights and humanitarian law, as well as the right to self-determination and the principle of non-discrimination. Its 51-day offensive against Gaza in July 2014 had led to an unprecedented loss of life and had triggered concerns about war crimes. Palestinians lived under harsh military rule and Israel had created two separate legal systems in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, one for Israelis and one for Palestinians. In addition, Israel had de facto exiled some 250,000 Palestinians from their land, including 14,000 from East Jerusalem. Read more »

Israel doesn’t abuse children, it just murders them

By Khalid Amayreh
Source: Palestine Information Center

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Throughout its unglamorous history, the UN issued many scandalous reports and adopted many scandalous resolutions reflecting lack of justice and absence of moral honesty.

This ever-existing symptom also reflected western hegemony over the international organization.

However, none of these reports and resolutions seems more scandalous than this week’s report which kept Israel off the List of Shame, which includes states and entities that abuse children.

This particular report is manifestly scandalous precisely because Israel is probably one of the most obscene abusers of children under the sun. Read more »

Hemaya: UN spurns Palestinian children

PRESS RELEASE
Hemaya Center for Human Rights
08 June 2015

Shifa Hospital 19 July 2014

Shifa Hospital 19 July 2014

Ban Ki-moon’s decision not to include Israel on the list of violators of children’s rights twists the knife in the heart of every Palestinian parent, making it very clear that in the eyes of the United Nations, Palestinian children’s lives don’t count.

When a military with the most sophisticated and accurate weaponry on the planet can kill more than 500 children in cold blood with complete impunity, as Israel’s absence from the list shows, it reveals more than just the complete disregard for Palestinian lives that has become so commonplace in the halls of power. It also makes it abundantly clear that the UN, the single most important international organisation charged with protecting the lives of the most vulnerable, is failing spectacularly. Read more »