A+ A-

GCC Chief renews call for Int'l peace Conf. to end Israeli occupation, establish Palestinian Independent state

Secretary General of The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Jassem Al-Budaiwi during the meeting
Secretary General of The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Jassem Al-Budaiwi during the meeting

(Changing Dateline) BRUSSLES, April 22 (KUNA) -- The Secretary General of The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Jassem Al-Budaiwi renewed calls, Monday during an EU-Gulf Cooperation Council High Level Forum on Regional Security and Cooperation, for an international peace conference to find a solution based on the idea of the end of Israeli occupation and an independent Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital on the basis of UN resolutions and the Arab Peace Initiative.
In his opening remarks at the meeting, Al-Budaiwi said, "I'd like to thank Mr. Borrell and the EU for organizing this high-level forum on security and cooperation, and I'm very happy to thank the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg as well for their contribution to the organization of this forum." "This, of course, emanates from a decision taken at the 27th meeting of the Joint Ministerial Council, which took place in Muscat last year and was an opportunity for us to exchange views and take forward regional initiatives and international initiatives," Al-Budaiwi added.
"I can confirm that all the member states of the GCC are present and support this exercise, and that shows the very high level of importance that we accord to the EU as a partner.
And it is also a sign, of course, the participation today of the reports that you attach to this forum.
Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen, we find ourselves at a time of major difficulties which affect regional and international security and stability in various parts of the Middle East," Al-Budaiwi said.
"Israel's pursuit of military inhuman operations in Gaza contravening all international human law provisions and affecting some of the Arab neighbors have affected us all.
I'd also like to talk about the escalation in the Red Sea that we have seen and the military operations on both sides, Iran and Israel, and things have taken a dangerous turn with possible catastrophic results if we cannot convince all parties involved in these developments to desist from what they are doing.
We will see, of course, major infringements of international law. As to the situation in Gaza, we want international law and international humanitarian law fully upheld.
We condemn the Israeli military activities in Gaza. We support, of course, the Palestinian people at this unhappy time," Al-Budaiwi added.
"We want a ceasefire and an end to military operations of the IDF immediately.
We would also want humanitarian aid to be provided without further delay. We encourage the international community to take up a serious position and corresponding measures in conformity with international law in response to Israel's punitive policies vis-أ -vis the defenseless people of Gaza.
We also stress the need for international help and protection for civilians in Gaza. We want the Israeli aggression in Gaza to cease.
We condemn the continuing Israeli occupation in the Gaza Strip, affecting, of course, hospitals, schools, making it impossible for them to operate. I would call upon us all to consider our responsibility and to do everything possible to ensure that the Palestinian people survive," Al-Budaiwi added.
"We would also renew our call for an international peace conference with all stakeholders participating so as to find a solution based on the idea of the end of Israeli occupation and an independent Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital on the basis of UN resolutions and the Arab Peace Initiative," Al-Budaiwi said.
"As to the escalation recently between Israel and Iran, we would stress that the situation has taken a new turn for the worse, with negative repercussions on the security of the region as a whole," Al-Budaiwi added.
"As to the Yemeni matters, it's important that we uphold 2722, the UN resolution of January 2024, which calls for an end to the attacks on cargo ships in the Red Sea.
It's important to support all initiatives to strengthen the coastal guards operating in that area," Al-Budaiwi said. "The militias are disturbing security and they need to be held responsible, and the United Nations resolutions should be upheld, and we need to strengthen the Coast Guard's capacities. We look forward to what the EU can contribute, but also Saudi Arabia and the United Nations, so as to mediate between the Yemeni parties and broker peace. And then there is the resolution 2616 as well," Al-Budaiwi said.
"Nevertheless, there is major tension, and we want to see a global political solution respecting the 2224 resolution of the Security Council.
We support all international offers to provide help for displaced persons, and we want to, with regard to Lebanon, see internal stability and peace.
We encourage all political parties in Lebanon to work together to surmount the divisions, sectarian and political, in that country and foster economic development.
We also want to strengthen the Lebanese government and the national institutions so as to allow the Lebanese people decent livelihoods and better prospects.
The importance of maintaining regional stability is huge.
The situation now highlights the need to improve international cooperation and make step-up efforts to prevent new conflicts from escalating," Al-Budaiwi added.
"Your Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen, I'd like to highlight the relationship between Gulf states and European states, and I would like to mention the meeting that took place last January in Muscat, and I'd like to refer to the Joint Ministerial Conference's decision to establish the Forum for Dialogue so as to work on regional and global questions, in particular nuclear proliferation, long-range missile proliferation, maritime security, combating terrorism, financing of terrorism, human trafficking, combating illegal drug trafficking, irregular migration, and organized crime. All of those issues are important areas of focus," Al-Budaiwi added.
"We have agreed to work together on five areas, maritime security, cyber security, combating terrorism, preventing nuclear proliferation, and crisis management and emergency response.
All of those areas have been worked on with a view to the next joint ministerial, and there will be agreements signed on illicit drug trafficking, police cooperation, and criminal justice, amongst other areas.
We want to benefit from the program for exchange of maritime information and the training programs of the Defense Academy and the Organization of Joint Maritime Exercises," Al-Budaiwi said.
"As to the regional dialogue on security, we are preparing a second meeting on that in the second half of 2024.
To conclude, I can but wish full success for this forum. I'd like to take this opportunity to recall the three following points.
The forum today reflects our common desire to have a strategic partnership and to take that partnership further.
We also would like the recommendation today to highlight the already developed relation between our two sides, which will make it possible to better tackle emerging questions and conflicts in our regions.
And as a third point, we need a common vision of cooperation on peace.
We need to coordinate and have mutual understanding to encourage peace and stability," Al-Budaiwi concluded.
Earlier, Al-Budaiwi explored with High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrel the relations between the GCC and EU. (Pickup previous) kns.htms.mb