H.E. Dr. Desra Percaya
Permanent Representative of the Republic of Indonesia
To the United Nations
“The Situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian Question”
New York, 24 January 2012
Since this is my very first appearance before the Security Council in my capacity as Permanent Representative of Indonesia, I would like to congratulate South Africa for its presidency for the month of January and wish the members of the Council, especially those that have joined this month as elected members every success in their endeavors.
I would also like to extend my sincere appreciation to the members of Security Council for convening this open debate on the Situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian Question. My deep appreciation is also rendered to the Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs, Mr. Oscar Fernandez-Taranco, for his briefing on such an important issue.
My delegation associates itself with the statements delivered by the Permanent Representative of Kazakhstan and Egypt, on behalf of OIC and NAM respectively.
The issue of Palestine is very dear to the people and government of Indonesia, and we are deeply concerned about the absence of progress in the peace process between Israel and Palestine. The deadline of 26 January 2012 set up by the Quartet for both parties to resume direct negotiation closes this week, with that goal nowhere in sight.
Israel’s continued illegal settlement activity in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, is not only a grave violation of international law, but also a stumbling block in this respect.
The report of the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) on the Humanitarian Impact of Israeli Settlement Policies of January 2012 succinctly demonstrates the grave danger that the settlement question poses not just to the prospects of peace in the Middle East, but even progress towards resumption of negotiations.
Continuing settlement construction, expansion and encroachment on Palestinian land is an integral part of the ongoing fragmentation of the West Bank, including the isolation of East Jerusalem.
As we know, Israel has also continued its illegal construction of the separation wall in the West Bank, including in and around Occupied East Jerusalem, in defiance of the advisory opinion of the International Court of Justice.
Perhaps it is not surprising therefore, that Israel maintains the same kind of control in Gaza Strip, where its blockade continues to hinder the movement of people and goods.
The blockade is responsible not only for the terrible humanitarian situation there, but also for even deeper unemployment as well as a shrinking of private sector businesses, as many of them continue to shut down.
Despite all of this, and indeed because of this, my delegation is still hopeful about the resumption of negotiations between the Israelis and the Palestinians under the guidelines outlined by the Quartet in its statement of 23 September.
Indonesia therefore calls upon the Quartet and the parties to ensure that everything is done to minimize every delay and eliminate every hurdle.
We urge Israel to demonstrate good faith by not placing insurmountable obstacles, such as we now have in its settlement policy, on the path of peace.
Resolution of the conflict will not be easy, and nobody should expect it to be.The core final status issues: borders, water, security, refugees, settlements and Jerusalem, present considerable challenges, but they are not insurmountable.
It remains our view that the road to peace lies in confronting the issues, not in avoiding or complicating them.To that end, true leadership and courage are required.
Indonesia reiterates its support for the two-State solution: Israel and a viable and independent Palestine, with East Jerusalem as its capital, living side by side in peace and security, on the basis of the principle of land for peace and a just and comprehensive regional peace consistent with Security Council resolutions 242 (1967), 338 (1973), 1397 (2003) and 1850 (2008), the Road Map of the Quartet, and the Arab Peace Initiative.
Let me also stress that a truly comprehensive and lasting peace in Middle East also demands a viable resolution of the Israel-Lebanon and Israel-Syria tracks. Therefore, Israel has to withdraw completely from the remaining Lebanese occupied land, as well as from the occupied Syrian Golan.
Finally, Indonesia wishes to reiterate its support for Palestine’s application for membership of the United Nations, which was submitted on 23 September 2011
I thank you.
Permanent Mission of the Republic of Indonesia to the United Nations, New York
325 East 38th Street, New York, NY, 10016, USA
Tel: 1.212.972.8333, Fax: 1.212.972.9780 - www.indonesiamission-ny.org