UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres reaffirmed the two-state solution on Tuesday on the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People.
“The position of the United Nations is clear: peace must advance, the occupation must end. We are steadfast in our commitment to realize the vision of two states, Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace and security, with Jerusalem as the capital of both states,” he said in a message.
“Together, let us reaffirm our support for the Palestinian people in their quest to achieve their inalienable rights and build a future of peace, justice, security and dignity for all,” he said.
Guterres expressed grave concern over the dire prospects for peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians.
“We mark the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People at a time of waning hope for peace,” he said. “I am deeply saddened by the growing number of Palestinian civilians who have lost their lives in the spiral of violence engulfing the occupied West Bank. Every casualty fuels fear and further violence. I urge all parties to take immediate action to reduce tensions and break this deadly cycle.
Long-standing drivers of the conflict, including the ongoing occupation, settlement expansion, demolitions and evictions of homes, add to anger, despair and hopelessness. Meanwhile, Gaza continues to endure debilitating closures and humanitarian crises, he said. “I reiterate my call on the parties to commit to ending the closures on Gaza and improving the living conditions of all Palestinians.”
Guterres also called on donors to step up and provide predictable and adequate funding for the UN aid agency for Palestine refugees. ■