Saudi Ambassador to India Saud Mohammed Al-Sati on Wednesday said that the Palestine issue should be resolved through the Arab Peace Initiative espoused by his country.
"The Arab countries have clearly expressed their interest in reaching a peaceful solution for the Palestinian-Israeli conflict based on international legitimacy, the relevant UN Security Council resolutions and the Arab Peace Initiative that was proposed by Saudi Arabia more than 15 years ago, and was subsequently adopted by the Arab Summit held in Beirut in 2002 as well as by the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation," Al-Sati said in a speech at an event to mark International Day of Solidarity with the Palestine People organised by the Indian Council of World Affairs (ICWA) at the Sapru House here.
"This peace plan, as you know, received wide support from the international community," he stated.
The Arab Peace Initiative, proposed by Saudi Arabia, calls for normalising relations between the Arab region and Israel, in exchange for a full withdrawal by Israel from the occupied territories (including East Jerusalem) and a "just settlement" of the Palestinian refugee problem based on UN Resolution 194.
"We believe that the Arab Peace Initiative provides a solid basis for resolving the conflict, and that it has all the elements for a final settlement that can achieve lasting, comprehensive and just peace in the Middle East," Al-Sati said.
"As Minister of Foreign Affairs of Saudi Arabia Adel Al-Jubeir said at UN General Assembly on September 23, 2017, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict was the most protracted in the region's history and had led to a great deal of human suffering. Nothing could justify the continuation of this conflict, particularly when there was wide-spread agreement over the two-state solution. International determination was needed to make that solution a reality."
The Ambassador called upon Israel to "stop its continuous defiance of the will of the international community by building the apartheid wall and illegal settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories in a clear violation of all relevant UN resolutions".
"The Israeli authorities must also halt their attempts to Judaize Al-Quds city (the Arabic name for Jerusalem), obliterate its Arab identity, and change its demographic character and the historical status of Al-Aqsa mosque."
On Tuesday, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi also reiterated India's support for the Palestinian cause.
In 1977, the UN General Assembly called for the annual observance of November 29 as the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. On that day, in 1947, the Assembly adopted the resolution on the partition of Palestine.
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