Statement by Ambassador Ruchira Kamboj, Permanent Representative of India to the UN, at a UNSC meeting on Palestine Question

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December 19, 2022

I now make the statement in my national capacity. I thank UN Special Coordinator Tor Wennesland for briefing on the implementation of Resolution 2334. I also thank the Permanent Mission of Israel and the Permanent Observer Mission of Palestine for their cooperation during India’s two-year tenure in the Council. I extend my appreciation to the Middle East team of DPPA for their support to our team.

Resolution 2334 was adopted by this Council to reaffirm the international community’s firm commitment to prevent the erosion of the two-State solution. It calls upon parties to prevent all acts of violence against civilians, stresses that all settlement activities must cease, and underscores the need to exert collective efforts to launch credible negotiations.

We remain deeply concerned by developments in the West Bank, Jerusalem, and Gaza. Violent attacks and the killing of civilians have taken many Palestinian and Israeli lives during the reporting period. Acts of destruction and provocation are also continuing. We have consistently advocated against all acts of violence, and we reiterate our call for immediate steps to ensure complete cessation of violence. We also note with concern the recent UNRWA report about a man-made cavity beneath a UNRWA school in Gaza.

Other unilateral measures that unduly alter the status-quo on the ground and undercut the viability of the two-State solution must be eschewed. It is extremely important for the international community and this Council to send a strong signal against any step that would prevent the possibility of durable peace between Israel and Palestine.

It is only by realizing the vision of two States living side by side in peace, security and mutual recognition, resolving all final status issues permanently through direct negotiations, that the legitimate aspirations of both peoples will be achieved.

The absence of a political process to achieve a viable two-State solution continues to be the biggest impediment to the peaceful settlement of the Palestine question. One cannot overlook the consequences of the current status-quo. Terror attacks, violence and incitement continue to create mutual fear and suspicion among the parties. This could lead to perpetuation of the conflict, which will only increase the number of casualties on both sides.

Let me conclude by saying that there is no alternative to the two-State solution to guarantee lasting peace between Israel and Palestine. And direct negotiation is the only path that can lead us there. There cannot be any shortcuts on that count.

I thank you.

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