PIEF alert: United Nations action for Palestine
In the light of intense diplomatic activity, the World Council of Churches (WCC) has reiterated its long held conviction that the United Nations must “fulfil its role and mandate according to the UN Charter, to make peace with justice prevail between Israelis and Palestinians, and with their neighbours.”
Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, the general secretary of the WCC, has declared that “we are now watching to see if peace and justice will be served in how the United Nations Security Council and General Assembly process the application of Palestine to become a full member state of the UN.”
He has underscored the principle that “negotiations should not be seen as an alternative to the UN acceptance of the Palestinian application for membership”. He added: “Different initiatives to build stability in the region should go hand in hand”.
Referring to recent Israeli plans to increase settlement activity building more than 1,100 new housing units, Tveit stressed how this is “a stark reminder of why sober deliberation, genuine courage and responsible action by the United Nations are necessary”.
The call from the WCC echoes a call by the heads of churches in Jerusalem who also view the moment as opportune and stress the need for “prayers and diplomatic efforts for peace between Palestinians and Israelis”.
Just as the world has taken prompt notice of the calls for democracy and the rule of law across the Arab world it is only pertinent that the community of nations acts with unanimity to uphold the long-standing claims for the establishment of a democratic state for the Palestinians.