Chinese envoy to UN calls for lasting solution to Palestinian question

Xinhua , Wednesday 26 Apr 2023

A Chinese envoy on Tuesday called on the international community to work with the greatest sense of urgency for a lasting settlement of the Palestinian question.

Chinese envoy to UN
Zhang Jun (second from left), China s permanent representative to the United Nations, speaks at a UN Security Council open debate on the Middle East at the UN headquarters in New York on April 25, 2023. Xinhua


The situation in the occupied Palestinian territory has become nerve-wracking for the whole world during the holy month of Ramadan over the past few years. This year, violence in the West Bank intensified with frequent tensions in East Jerusalem and Gaza.

The international community cannot become accustomed to this and cannot let it go unchecked. Instead, more must be invested in promoting a comprehensive, just and lasting settlement of the Palestinian question with the greatest sense of urgency, said Zhang Jun, China's permanent representative to the United Nations.

There is a need to oppose violence and incitement and seek common security, he told the Security Council in an open debate on the Middle East.

Over the past month, Israeli security forces have many times raided al-Aqsa Mosque, beating and removing Muslims, shattering the peace and tranquility of Ramadan and triggering new tensions.

China condemns all acts of violence against civilians and calls on all parties to exercise calm and restraint and put an end to radical and provocative rhetoric and actions, he said.

"Palestine and Israel are neighbors that cannot be moved away from each other. The security of one party cannot be based on the insecurity of the other," said Zhang.

"In order to fundamentally break the cycle of violence and establish lasting peace, equal attention must be given to the legitimate security concerns of both sides, who must be encouraged to achieve common security through dialogue and negotiation."

Settlement activity in the occupied Palestinian territory is illegal. China urges Israel to comply with Security Council Resolution 2334 and effectively cease all settlement activities.

It also needs to be pointed out that unilateral measures to change the status quo of Jerusalem are null and void. China calls for respect for the historic status quo of the Holy Sites in Jerusalem, and for Jordan's custodianship over them, he said.

People's livelihood must be guaranteed and Palestinian economic development must be promoted, said Zhang.

The prolonged occupation and frequent instability have severely constrained the viability of the Palestinian economy and led to the worsening situation for Palestinians.

Israel should relax and lift unreasonable restrictions on the movement of people and goods, as well as on land use in the occupied territory, create conditions for the development of Palestinian communities in the West Bank, and lift the blockade of Gaza Strip as soon as possible, he said.

The international community should also provide assistance to Palestine through multiple channels to help Palestine alleviate its financial crisis and ensure the provision of public services, he said.

Zhang stressed the need to adhere to the two-state solution and to promote the resumption of peace talks.

The recent detente between Saudi Arabia and Iran set an example for defusing differences through dialogue. On other Middle East issues, positive developments of dialogue and reconciliation are also in the making, said Zhang.

Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Qin Gang recently had separate phone calls with the Palestinian and Israeli foreign ministers.

He encouraged Israel and Palestine to show political courage and take steps toward resuming peace talks on the basis of the two-state solution, said Zhang.

China expects the international community to increase coordination, take substantive steps and make unremitting efforts to promote the resumption of Palestinian-Israeli talks and implement the two-state solution, he said. 

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