Special Security Council session; Settlements the obstacle to peace
Palestinian initiative of convening an informal Security Council meeting condemning Israeli settlements expected to precede requests to extract a resolution against Israel; Israel’s UN ambassador: ‘The Palestinians are using the international community to harm Israel.’
The UN Security Council is set to meet next Friday to discuss the issue of Israeli settlements under the official banner of ”The settlements as the obstacle to peace and a two-state solution.”
The talks, which will take place within the Arria-Formula—a relatively recent practice whereby the Security Council meets on an informal basis—and are expected to take a hostile line toward Israel.
The initiative is expected to constitute and opening diplomatic Palestinian salvo designed to solicit a practical Security Council resolution regarding the settlements.
While the convening of the meeting was initiated by the Palestinians, the official request to bring it to fruition was submitted by Malaysia, Venezuela, Senegal, Egypt and Angola.
Ynet obtained and reviewed the position paper distributed among the participants. “The existence and expansion of the settlements on Palestinians lands which were occupied in 1967 endanger a solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the two-state solution,” the paper reads.
It further assigns guilt to Israeli security forces for “overlooking violent acts of the settlers against Palestinians and not giving them the protection to which they are entitled under international law.”
The central focus regarding settlements is expected to be placed on construction in Jewish neighborhoods in East Jerusalem, the expansion of existing communities in the West Bank and what the organizers have described as “the abandonment of Palestinian lands.”
Following the talks’ conclusion, it coordinators are expected to demand that the Security Council take practical steps against Israel on the issue.
The planned meeting evoked scathing criticism from Israeli Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon. “The Palestinians are using the international community to harm the State of Israel instead of stopping incitement and sitting at the negotiation table. The Palestinians are conducting state terror against the communities in Judea and Samaria,” Danon said.
Danon raised further objections to the Palestinian practice bypassing the direct negotiations with Israel, instead opting to take matters to the UN.
“The Palestinian leadership is choosing, once again, to reject our repeated suggestion for direct negotiations and is going straight to the UN. This move will not lead to an improvement in the Palestinian situation,” he wanrned. “It is the international community’s responsibility to strongly reject these attempts. Only an absolute stop to Palestinian incitement and the halting of terror against Israeli citizens will facilitate a dialogue.”