Jerusalem24 – The 54-member United Nations Economic and Social Council in New York adopted by an overwhelming majority two resolutions on “The economic and social consequences of the occupation of the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem, and for the Arab population of the occupied Syrian Golan,” as well as “The situation and assistance to Palestinian women.”
The first resolution calls for the full opening of the border crossings to the Gaza Strip; the lifting of all severe restrictions imposed on the movement of the Palestinian people; and the guarantee of the free movement of people and goods throughout the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem, and to and from the outside world.
The resolution reaffirms the inalienable right of the Palestinian people to all their natural and economic resources, and calls upon Israel, the “occupying power,” not to exploit, endanger, or cause the loss or depletion of those resources.
In the seven decades since the establishment of the state of Israel, these resources have been compromised and exploited through a variety of measures. These include widespread Palestinian dispossession of land in the ongoing Nakba, exploitation of water through failed negotiations, and a finders-keepers approach to gas and oil found in or under-occupied land.
The resolution calls for the complete cessation of all forms of settlement and related activities – including the complete cessation of all measures aimed at changing the demographic composition, legal status, and distinctive character of the occupied territories, including in particular in and around occupied East Jerusalem, in compliance with relevant Security Council Resolution “2334”.
The draft resolution received the support of 43 countries. Four countries opposed it, namely the United States, Canada, Liberia, and Israel. A further four countries abstained: the Ivory Coast, Guatemala, Solomon Islands, and the United Kingdom.
The resolution calls on the international community to make serious and responsible efforts to support these positions and to take real measures for accountability for all human rights violations and war crimes committed by Israel, the “occupying power” against the Palestinian people.
The Deputy Permanent Observer of the State of Palestine to the United Nations in New York, Ambassador Fida Abdel-Hadi Nasser, praised the role of the countries that voted in favor of the resolution on their principled approval, and the international community’s support for Palestine.
With regard to the second resolution, she “expressed grave concern over the deaths and injuries of civilians, including children, women, peaceful demonstrators and journalists.”
The second resolution stresses “the obligation to protect the civilian population in accordance with international humanitarian law,” and strongly condemns “the killing of journalist Shireen Abu Akleh.”
The resolution further stresses the need to ensure prompt accountability, and protect civil society actors to enable them to perform their work freely and without fear of attacks and harassment.
The draft of the second resolution received the support of 40 countries, and the opposition of six countries, namely the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, the Czech Republic, Liberia, and Israel. Four countries abstained: Austria, Croatia, Guatemala, and the Solomon Islands.
For his part, the Permanent Observer of the State of Palestine to the United Nations in New York, Riyad Mansour, affirmed that despite adding new language to the Palestinian women’s decision (including condemning the killing of journalists and a strong condemnation of the assassination of Shireen Abu Akleh) the two resolutions were adopted by the overwhelming majority, which indicates “the failure of the occupying power, a current member of the Economic and Social Council, to dissuade the international community from standing by Palestinian rights.”