Israel-Palestine conflict: Gambia calls for permanent truce and an end to occupation

EYEAFRICA TV: Banjul, THE GAMBIA:- The Ambassador and Permanent Representative of The Republic of The Gambia to the United Nations, H.E Lang Yabou, has called on the international community to reach a permanent truce and end the ongoing occupation by addressing the root causes of the conflict in the interest of the peace.

Ambassador Yabou made these statements at the United Nations agenda on the situation in the Middle East. He pointed out that lasting peace and security in Palestine and Middle East by extension would only breed regional and greater world peace. Ambassador Yabou thus challenged the international community to spur genuine dialogue with a view to ending deadlock and intensify efforts to bring Israel and Palestine to the negotiating table.

Below is the full text of statement delivered by H.E Ambassador Yabou on behalf of His Excellency Dr. Mamadou Tangara, Minister of Foreign Affairs, International Cooperation and Gambians Abroad.

Mr. President,

Distinguished Delegates, Ladies and Gentlemen,

I have the honour to deliver this statement on behalf of His Excellency, Dr. Mamadou Tangara, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of The Gambia who could not personally be here to deliver the statement due to other urgent state matters.

My delegation fully associates itself with the statement delivered by Comoros on behalf of the African Group. We also align ourselves with the statements delivered on behalf of the OIC and NAM.

Mr. President,

The Gambia is deeply concerned by the scale of the violence in the recent Israeli – Palestinian conflict, including the desecration of the Al-Aqsa holy site, the sanctity of which must be respected by all. My delegation therefore is calling for an end to the violence on Palestinians and the lifting of blockade on the Gaza Strip.

We are encouraged by the declaration of cease-fire and it is our expectation that, both sides to the conflict would continue to adhere to the cease fire because escalation and worsening violence do not help anybody. The Gambia is therefore, appealing to both sides to avoid any further escalation and adhere to the principles of international law.

We have had too many ceasefires over the last two decades. The international community must now move to a permanent truce and an end to the occupation by addressing the root causes of the conflict for enduring peace.

Mr. President,

Peace and security in Palestine and the Middle East mean peace and security for the Middle East region and the world at large. In light of this fact, the international community must encourage genuine dialogue to end the deadlock and intensify efforts to bring both sides of the conflict to the negotiation table.

The continuous use of force and conflict will only add to the sufferings of the people living in the area. It is time for the international community to stop the policy of apartheid and act decisively to end this long-standing conflict that has claimed the lives of many innocent victims while displacing millions. We were all traumatized by the treatment of innocent children and that needs to stop.

In this regard, my delegation reiterates our call for the revival of the two-state solution on the basis of a renewed and credible peace process involving the Quartet and all the stakeholders and in line with relevant UN Resolutions. We cannot continue to ignore the humanitarian catastrophe that goes with this conflict.

Mr. President,

It is our strong position that, peaceful coexistence is the only viable way forward. Therefore, ending impunity, upholding international law, addressing the dire humanitarian and refugee crisis and having an independent Palestinian State with East Jerusalem as its capital should be urgently pursued by all and sundry.

The Security Council must reassess its role when it comes to finding a lasting solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. The Council must rise to the occasion and work towards a two-state solution as per the relevant Resolutions of the United Nations.

For our part, The Gambia has always been consistent with its position on the plight of the Palestinians in pursuit of their inalienable and legitimate right to self-determination and full independence as a sovereign state, peacefully living together with its neighbours. This we believe is the legitimate and right thing to do. There is an urgent need for a new peace process to be launched for lasting peace in the region. We are appealing to the Quartet to urgently initiate one without undue delay.

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