Egypt calls on UN Security Council to accept Palestine's full membership in UNGA

Ahram Online , Wednesday 29 Nov 2023

Egypt’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Sameh Shoukry called on the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) to accept Palestine's membership in the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) within its authority.

Egypt s FM Sameh Shoukry
Still photo of Egypt's Foreign Affairs Minister Sameh Shoukry during his speech at the Joint Press Encounter by The Ministerial Committee assigned by the Joint Arab-Islamic Extraordinary Summit.


This came during Shoukry's participation in the Joint Press Encounter by The Ministerial Committee assigned by the Joint Arab-Islamic Extraordinary Summit as part of a periodic briefing session held by the UNSC on the situation in the Gaza Strip on Wednesday.

Palestine was accepted as an observer member of the UNGA in November 2012.

During his address, Shoukry unequivocally condemned the Israeli killing of civilians in Gaza, labeling it a clear violation of international and humanitarian law. 

"Egypt has condemned the escalation in Gaza since the beginning of the aggression," Shoukry stated, reaffirming Egypt's renewed rejection of the forced displacement of Palestinians from the Gaza Strip.

He added that the globally rejected policy of forced displacement remains a goal for Israel, “as it seeks to drive Palestinians from their land by making life in the Gaza Strip impossible.”

Furthermore, Shoukry stated that what is happening in the Gaza Strip met with a similar policy in the West Bank that forcibly displaces its residents, whether through unleashing settler violence or through demolition operations, evictions, and military incursions into West Bank cities.

This is in addition to the annexation of land through systematic settlement operations that cement the illegitimate occupation, he continued.

The concept of "self-defence" cannot be applied to serious violations of international humanitarian law, Shoukry stated, asking "What kind of self-defence allows an occupying force to suppress and destroy the lives of the people it occupies?"

Despite the global warnings about the dangers of targeting civilians in the Gaza Strip, the Israeli approach over more than fifty days can only be interpreted as a deliberate policy to make life in the Gaza Strip impossible, Shoukry continued.

"This is evident through the targeting of civilians, medical and residential facilities, forcing residents of the north to evacuate southward in a region already suffering from high population density and a severe blockade for years," he explained. 

 Addressing the UNSC, the foreign minister directed a question, saying: "Where does the Security Council stand on the Palestinian children imprisoned in Israeli jails for many years?"

He emphasized the avoidance by certain countries who are advocating for international legitimacy to condemn the violations in Gaza.

Shoukry also noted that the Arab-Islamic committee has submitted a non-politicized resolution to the Security Council for consideration.

This resolution focuses solely on the humanitarian aspect and aims to save two and a half million innocent people in Gaza, he explained.

"What has been provided so far, with Egypt contributing 70 percent of it independently, is not sufficient for the needs of two and a half million Palestinians," Shoukry continued.

Furthermore, Shoukry highlighted Egypt's progress in implementing the UN Security Council resolution regarding the humanitarian ceasefire and its success, in collaboration with Qatar and the United States, in activating a prisoner and hostage exchange deal that also includes access to aid to Gaza, both in the south and north.

"We will continue our efforts to extend the duration of the ceasefire and work towards a permanent ceasefire, putting an end to the war and destruction," Shoukry reaffirmed and called on the Security Council to support these efforts and to support accountability for those responsible for the crimes committed against civilian.

He concluded by stating that Egypt sees no alternative to resolving the conflict other than ending the occupation and progressing towards a two-state solution.

Short link: