Saudi Arabia renews call for independent Palestinian state

Saudi Arabia renews call for independent Palestinian state

NEW YORK (RAHNUMA): Saudi Arabia on Wednesday reaffirmed to the UN its stance over Palestine calling for end to the Israeli occupation, the establishment of an independent Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital, and the guaranteed right of return for refugees.

The message came during a speech to a UN Security Council session — to discuss the Middle East and Palestinian situation — by Counselor Mohammed Al-Ateeq, charge d’affaires of the permanent mission of Saudi Arabia to the UN.

He highlighted the importance of comprehensive and lasting peace in the Middle East as a strategic option to end the conflict, on the basis of the two-state solution, in accordance with international references, the 2002 Arab Peace Initiative, return of refugees, and putting an end to Israel’s occupation of all Arab territories.

Al-Ateeq said: “The Muslims’ holy month of Ramadan has witnessed the Israeli occupation forces storming Al-Aqsa Mosque, closing its gates, and attacking defenseless worshippers inside the mosque and in its outer courtyards.”

He noted that the Kingdom strongly condemned the Israeli actions describing them as a blatant attack on the Islamic nation and a violation of international resolutions.

The Saudi diplomat called on the international community, and the UN Security Council in particular, to hold Israel fully responsible for its continued violations against Palestinian people and their territories which, he pointed out, would only lead to more violence and security tensions in the region.

Addressing delegates, Al-Ateeq also reiterated Saudi Arabia’s condemnation of recent attacks by the Iran-backed Houthis on civilian targets in the Kingdom. He told the session that it was his country’s sovereign right to take all necessary measures to defend its territories and citizens, in accordance with its obligations under international law.

Saudi Arabia, he added, welcomed and supported the transfer of power by former Yemeni President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi to a new presidential council in Aden that would hopefully help to bring security and stability to Yemen.

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