state of palestine
It is extraordinary to watch the tide of world opinion increasingly shifting towards the people of Palestine while, conversely, Israel experiences ever-increasing isolation.
US President Obama’s recent visit to Israel all but confirmed the complete irrelevance of America in any ongoing ‘peace process’. In the meantime, not only neighboring Arab states and European countries but African countries as well line up in support of Palestinian independence.
We might have anticipated that Zimbabwe would be a natural ally to Palestine, having gone through their own struggle for independence from white minority rule. As with South Africa, the parallels with Apartheid are too close to the bone to go unnoticed.
Zimbabwe: Palestine Commends Zim
Palestine has commended Zimbabwe for its political support in its quest to become an independent state. The Middle East country is under occupation from Israel, which is supported by western countries mainly the United States of America.
Presenting a public lecture at the National Defence College in Harare yesterday, Palestinian ambassador to Zimbabwe Mr Hashem Dajani said there was a need to strengthen the relationship between the two countries that started during Zimbabwe’s struggle for independence.
“I want to express our appreciation to President Robert Mugabe, to the people and Government of Zimbabwe for the political support given to our Palestine people in their struggles,” he said.
“The Palestine-Zimbabwe relations of friendship, support and solidarity go back to the days of the struggle for independence and it continues to grow stronger. We share almost the same vision on different issues within the framework of different forums, like the United Nations, the Non-Aligned Movement global economy and many others.”
Mr Dajani was confident that the Palestinian people would continue fighting to realise “their national objectives, freedom and independence.”
“Your support for us in our national struggle will accelerate realisation of peace and victory and avert our people and the region from new wars and disasters,” he said.
He described Zimbabwe as a “united nation” as evidenced by the recently held constitutional referendum. “To me the referendum was successful and it showed that the people of Zimbabwe, without interference, are united. It is clear that the unity displayed during the referendum will prevail during the elections expected soon,” he said.
He said most Israeli political parties, with unlimited support from the US, had systemically denied the Palestinian people their most basic rights.
“It is Israel that occupies the four million people in the State of Palestine. It is Israel that has condemned more than five million Palestinians to exile,” he said.
“It is Israeli occupation of Palestine that constitutes the main source of violence and instability in the region.Justice seems to have no meaning in the Israeli political lexicon unless it is in relation to Israeli Jewish citizens. This fact can be attested to by I,5 million Christian and Muslim Palestinians who hold Israeli citizenship and yet face institutionalised discrimination within Israel itself and incitement against Palestinians is on the rise.”
read the rest of this article here: http://allafrica.com/stories/201303280899.html
Russia has proven to be the new power-player in the Middle East of late, much to the annoyance of the US and the European Union. It was Russia that prevented the US and NATO from openly arming the rebels in Syria. Now Russia is affirming support for the State of Palestine!
Of course Russia’s role in Syria has been entirely dictated by self-interest as the last Russian military facility outside the former Soviet Union is located in the port of Tartus in Syria, and exists there due to the goodwill of the current Syrian government. Mahmoud Abbas has no similar point of leverage.
Medvedev for cooperation with Palestine
At a meeting between Russia’s Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev and President of the Palestine Autonomy Mahmoud Abbas in Moscow, Mr. Medvedev said that Russia will always support the efforts of Palestinian leaders to make Palestine a strong and modern state.
He added that Russia is ready to cooperate with Palestine to settle its conflict with Israel, as well as to cooperate with it in the economic and humanitarian spheres.
In his turn, Mr. Abbas said that Palestine’s cooperation with Russia would be much broader if Palestine becomes a sovereign state.
Earlier, Mahmoud Abbas met with President Putin.
During his meeting with the President of the Palestinian autonomy Mahmoud Abbas in Moscow, Russia’s President Vladimir Putin said that he hopes for a successful settlement of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.
Mr. Putin said that Russia will do everything that may depend on it to stabilize the situation in the Middle East.
In his turn, Mahmoud Abbas praised the current level of Russian-Palestinian relations and said that there is every reason to believe in further progress in these relations.
The Russian President noted that Russia and Palestine have long-standing traditions of good relations.
Palestine expects to start peace talks with Israel this year to reach a political settlement through the establishment of two states, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said.
“We hope that substantive peace talks with Israel will begin this year. While these hopes are perhaps not very great, nevertheless, we expect sooner or later to achieve a political settlement based on the principle of the establishment of two states,” Abbas said at a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin outside Moscow on Thursday.
read the rest of this article here: http://english.ruvr.ru/2013_03_14/Medvedev-for-cooperation-with-Palestine/
The following article appeared on the Press TV website but is largely a commentary on one that appeared in the Jerusalem Post on Friday.
It appears that the Israeli government is getting increasingly frustrated with the shift towards Palestine that is being exhibited across Europe.
The Israeli government’s concerns are not without foundation. This week two more countries have made moves to upgrade Palestine’s official status:
- Tuesday, March 5, Ma’an News Agency broke the news on that Sakir Ozkan Torunlar, Turkey’s consul general in Jerusalem, will be accredited as Turkey’s ambassador to the Palestinian Authority (full story here).
- Thursday March 7, 2013; with an overwhelming vote of 299 to 20, the Swedish Parliament upgraded the status of the Palestinian representative office in the country to a full status, granting the mission the title of ‘embassy’ (full story here).
The international isolation of Israel is progressing steadily. How long will the USA be willing to stand against the tide?
Tel Aviv frustrated by EU’s pro-Palestine slant: Israeli official
According to a report published by the Jerusalem Post on Friday, an unnamed Israeli official criticized the EU over its “negative” policy toward Tel Aviv.
The Israeli official said there was “no positive agenda between Israel and Brussels, only negative.”
“There are only sticks, no carrots,” the official stated, criticizing the EU foreign policy chief, Catherine Ashton, for certain issues such as pushing the EU members on February 22 to enforce restrictions on products from the illegal Israeli settlements built in the occupied Palestinian territories.
Even the Netherlands, which is one of the strongest allies of Israel, followed Ashton’s advice and recommended that the business owners effectively label products from the Israeli settlements, the official said.
“When it comes to Israel they are very vocal. When it comes to the Palestinians, they are very timid.”
The Israeli official also pointed to the internal report by the EU heads of mission in al-Quds (Jerusalem) and Ramallah on February 27 which was leaked to the media.
The report said the EU programs should not be “used to support settlements and settlement-related activity, including funding for research, education or technological cooperation.”
“Every year they put out a report that is critical of Israel, even though their mandate is to strengthen ties with the PA (Palestinian Authority),” the official stated.
The Tel Aviv regime has increased its illegal settlement expansion following an upgrade of Palestine’s status at the UN to a non-member observer state on November 29, 2012.
Many countries, including some of Tel Aviv’s allies, have condemned the Israeli plans to construct illegal settler units in the occupied Palestinian territories.
On December 10, 2012, the 27-nation European nation said it was “deeply dismayed by and strongly opposes Israeli” plans to expand illegal settlements in the occupied West Bank, including in East al-Quds (Jerusalem).
The following article appeared today on the website of the Kuwait News Agency. Palestinian negotiators are attempting to use their enhanced status to leverage some response from the United Nations Security Council (UNSC).
But what sort of response can they expect when the United States holds veto power in the UNSC? It’s not as if the UN is ever going to institute a campaign of sanctions against Israel as it does with Iran. It all looks like an exercise in futility. Perhaps I’m missing something?
Palestine urges UNSC to advance achievement of two-State solution this year
Palestine urges UNSC to advance achievement of two-State solution this year
UNITED NATIONS, March 4 (KUNA) — Palestine on Monday urged the Security Council to advance the achievement of the two-State solution this year and to put an end to Israel’s “war crimes, acts of State terrorism.”
Palestinian Charge d’Affaires Feda Abdulhady Nasser said in a letter to Council President Vitaly Churkin of Russia “serious efforts are required, foremost by the Security Council, to uphold the law and to hold Israel accountable for its violations.
The immediate aim must be to defuse the current volatile situation and to foster a proper environment for advancing this year the achievement of the two-State solution.” This, she added, should be based on the relevant United Nations resolutions, the Madrid principles, the Arab Peace Initiative, and Quartet Roadmap, “before the viability of that solution is completely destroyed by the occupying Power.”
She complained that the number of Palestinians imprisoned by Israel “regrettably continues to grow as the occupying Power has persisted with its arrest campaign, including of children and civilians partaking in protests against the occupation.” During the month of February alone, she noted, Israel arrested at least 382 Palestinians, including 10 women.
The Palestinian official also complained about the Israeli treatment of Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails, which pushed thousands to go on hunger strike.
“All these illegal Israeli practices are exacerbating tensions and casting grave doubts on Israel’s claims of commitment to achieving a peace that brings an end to this grotesque military occupation and ensures justice and freedom for the Palestinian people and peace and security between Palestine and Israel,” she said.
“For all of these war crimes, acts of State terrorism” and systematic human rights violations being committed against the Palestinian people, she stressed, Israel, the occupying Power, must be held accountable and the perpetrators must be brought to justice.