The Jakarta Post
Indonesia has urged members of the United Nations Security Council to take more concrete action in implementing a resolution on illegal Israeli settlements or risk undermining its own authority, the country’s ambassador to the UN said this week.
During a meeting of the UNSC in New York, the United States, on Wednesday, members were briefed on the latest developments in Israeli-occupied Palestinian territory, particularly over the continued construction of illegal settlements that the international community has largely condemned.
Israel has advanced plans for over 22,000 housing units in West Bank settlements and East Jerusalem in the three years since the Security Council adopted Resolution 2334 condemning settlements on Palestinian land, UN Mideast envoy Nickolay Mladenov said in his briefing.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres declared the construction of settlements “must cease immediately and completely,'' he said in a circulated report to the council.
“Indonesia fully concurs with the secretary-general that the illegal settlement activities continue to undermine the prospects of ending the occupation and achieving a two-state solution,” said Dian Triansyah Djani, Indonesia’s permanent representative to the UN, in a press statement circulated Friday.
"We, therefore, join other Council members in again and again urging Israel to immediately and completely cease all settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem.”
The historic resolution was approved by the council in 2016 when the US abstained from the vote rather than use its veto to support long-time ally Israel. Other veto-wielding powers China, France, Russia and the United Kingdom also supported the resolution.
Trian argued that the council had set the right course for reviving the Mid-East peace process when it adopted the resolution three years ago.
However, the US under Donald Trump has reversed its policy, with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo saying last month that Washington no longer considered the settlements illegal.
“The council must devise necessary means to ensure full implementation of Resolution 2334, which has stated Israel's settlement activity constitutes a ‘flagrant violation’ of international law and has ‘no legal validity’,” Trian said.
The Indonesian diplomat said stakeholders involved could not continue business-as-usual and that failure to devise such measures would be a case of the council undermining its own authority and decisions and further destabilize the situation in the occupied territory and the wider region.
"Our action or inaction against this false reality will determine not only the credibility of the United Nations but also the fate of the Palestinian people and of the Middle East," he said. “As for Indonesia, the government and its people have and will always stand by our Palestinian brothers and sisters.”
Trian also reiterated Indonesia's support on a plan to hold the first Palestinian legislative and presidential elections in 14 years, expressing hope that it would be able to unify all Palestinians in realizing their dream of a free Palestine.
Indonesia has been a staunch supporter of Palestinian statehood since the global anticolonial push of the 1940s and 1950s, which helped dozens of countries break free from the shackles of their colonial masters. Indonesian believes Palestine is the last of those countries and has yet to experience independence. (tjs)