Palestine: still a waiting State

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UN Photo, UNRWA Building Damaged in Gaza City, Shareef Sarhan

Today the United Nations marks the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. This day provides an opportunity for the international community to focus its attention on the fact that the question of Palestine still remains unresolved.

Of the two States to be created under the General Assembly's resolution adopted on this day in 1947, only one, Israel, has so far come into being. Resolution 181 (II) provided the establishment, in Palestine, of a "Jewish State" and an "Arab State", with Jerusalem as a corpus separatum under a special international regime.

For the Palestinian State, and its people, are yet to attain their inalienable rights, which are defined by the General Assembly as the right to self-determination without external interference, the right to national independence and sovereignty, and the right to return to their homes and property from which they had been displaced.

The Palestinian people, who now number more than eight million, live primarily in the Palestinian territory occupied by Israel since 1967, including East Jerusalem; in Israel; in neighbouring Arab States; and in refugee camps in the region.

In 2012 when Palestine was voted to have non-member observer state status at the UN, many hoped that it would renew efforts in the Israel-Palestine peace process and lead to a stable co-existence of two-states. Unfortunately, violence is still prevalent in the region and the Palestinian people face an array of humanitarian crisis, such as: evictions from their home and land, blockades, restriction of movement, poverty, and shortage of food and fuel.

"This year's observance takes place as Israeli and Palestinian negotiators work together towards the agreed objective of a peaceful, comprehensive settlement on all permanent status issues. I call on the international community to support the parties in this ambitious endeavour to fulfil the two-State solution, bringing about an end to the conflict. All parties must act in a responsible way and refrain from actions that undermine the prospects for successful negotiations. " – Secretary General Ban Ki-moon