Statement of Bangladesh delivered by H.E. Dr. Dipu Moni, MP, Hon’ble Chairperson of the Parliamentary Standing Committee for Foreign Ministry on Agenda Item 63: Permanent Sovereignty of the Palestinian People in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, Including East Jerusalem, and of the Arab Population in the Occupied Syrian Golan over their Natural Resources at the Second Committee of the Seventy-Second Session of the General Assembly (UNHQs, New York, 23 October 2017)
- We align with the statement delivered by Ecuador on behalf of the Group of 77 and China.
- We thank the Under-Secretary-General and Executive Secretary of the Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ECSWA) and Coordinator of the Regional Commission for the presentation and convey our appreciation of the Note by the Secretary-General on the Economic and social repercussions of the Israeli occupation on the living conditions of the Palestinian people in the Occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem, and the Arab population in the occupied Syrian Golan.
- As has been revealed in ECSWA report, and as we are witnessing with a deep sense of frustration, the continued occupation of the Palestinian territories for nearly five decades, systematic human rights violations, indiscriminate attacks against civilians and expansion of illegal settlements by Israel, the occupying power, constitute an affront to the rights of those people and, thus, worsens their social and economic conditions.
- It is concerning to know that Gaza continues to face difficulties in access to water and sanitation infrastructure and 23% of Gazans still are disconnected from the sewage network. Chronic electricity and fuel deficit not only affects the daily lives of the people there but also exacerbates water crisis in occupied territories with 95% of Gaza water no longer fit for human consumption and 95% of Gaza population are at risk of water-borne diseases. ECSWA report has also mentioned that demolition of water, sanitation and hygiene infrastructure continues in these territories. It is worrisome that Israeli authorities and settlers continue practices such as illegal transfer of hazardous waste to West Bank and other areas that gravely damage Palestinian agricultural land, health, animals and biodiversity. We condemn the discriminatory planning policies implemented by Israel in Palestinian territories which failed consistently to address the public needs and seriously hampered investment in infrastructure.
- As effects of the occupation of the Palestinian territory and the Syrian Golan, there persists high rates of unemployment, rampant poverty levels, widespread displacement and homelessness, numerous health-related problems, severe food insecurity, insufficient number of schools and high dropout rates of students and rising aid-dependency for the most basic of needs. Food insecurity in the Occupied Palestinian Territory derives primarily from the lack of economic access to food that is intrinsically correlated with poverty. In 2016, education-related grave violations continued to restrict the right of children to access education safely in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem. Destruction of homes and properties and exploitation, endangerment and depletion of Palestinian natural resources have compounded their poverty and underdevelopment. These development issues including others must be addressed.
- The principle of “Leave no one behind” applies to all including the people under foreign occupation. We call upon the international community to impress upon Israel, the occupying power, to put an end to its systematic violation of international humanitarian law and human rights principles, and restrictive measures so that a favourable condition is created for the economies of occupied Palestinian territories to grow. We look forward to positive signs to emerge from various regional and bilateral initiatives being pursued to address the Palestinian question in the context of Two-State solution. We are of a firm belief that this agenda item is indivisible and relevant to the work of the Second Committee.
- Bangladesh reaffirms the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people and of the population of the occupied Syrian Golan over their natural resources and to claim restitution as a result from illegal measures taken by Israel. We reiterate our position that the right to self-determination of the peoples in the occupied territories of Palestine must be ensured for the realization of the 2030 Agenda and the SDGs.
I thank you.