Push for direct Middle East talks nearing turning point – UN

Push for direct Middle East talks nearing turning point – UN

Efforts to promote direct negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians are nearing a turning point, a senior United Nations official said on Tuesday, underlining that success hinges on continued regional and international support, UN website reported.

Since May, seven round of proximity, or indirect, talks have been held between the two sides to identify areas of mutual areas, Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs Oscar Fernandez-Taranco told the Security Council.

Currently, the parties are holding internal discussions on whether to enter direct talks.

"We urge them to be forthcoming in their deliberations and are hopeful that both sides will seize the opportunity and engage in a path of decisive progress towards a sustainable, mutually-acceptable two-State solution, within a realistic timeframe," the UN official said.

He voiced appreciation for the United States' mediation, especially the "tireless" efforts of United States Senator George Mitchell, who held talks separately last week with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Mr. Fernandez-Taranco also noted the involvement of Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, who continues to be in contact with Mr. Mitchell and has spoken directly to Palestinian, Israeli and Arab leaders to encourage progress in the peace process.

He welcomed last month's decision by the foreign ministers of the Arab League to give its backing, in principle, to Mr. Abbas to enter into direct negotiations when he deems it appropriate.

"For these negotiations to succeed, it is crucial to maintain an enabling climate on the ground," Mr. Fernandez-Taranco stressed, calling on the parties to adhere to their commitments under the Roadmap, the internationally-approved plan for a two-State solution to the Middle East conflict, and international law.

On West Bank settlement construction, he called for the continuation of the partial moratorium set to expire on 26 September.

"Let me recall that under the Roadmap, Israel is obligated to freeze all settlement activity, including natural growth, and dismantle outposts erected since March 2001," he said.

On the occasion of Ramadan, the Muslim holy month, Israel has removed three obstacles to movement in the West Bank, extended the hours of operation at some checkpoints and slightly eased access to Jerusalem for Friday prayers on the Temple mount.

But the number of obstacles to movement in the West Ban continues to number more than 500, and Mr. Fernandez-Taranco urged the expansion of easings on movement and access.

The UN is also concerned about the rise in demolition or dismantlement of Palestinian-owned structures in Area C which have uprooted or affected more than 200 people, especially in Al-Farisiye in the North Jordan Valley, where two families - evicted from their homes earlier this year - currently face demolition of the shelter provided by the Palestinian Authority with international support.

Following the announcement by Israel in late June that it would ease the blockade against Gaza, and the volume and variety of supplies entering Gaza has continued to increase, up nearly 30 per cent from the last reporting period.

"While these are positive developments, imports into Gaza still remain far below the weekly average of truckloads before the closure was instituted in 2007," the senior official pointed out. "The current extent of easing cannot meet the crucial longer-term construction and rehabilitation needs of Gazans, and resuscitate the legitimate economy."

Although Israel recently approved 11 UN construction projects in Gaza, a move welcomed by the world body, he voiced concern over bottlenecks in carrying out these projects.

Mr. Fernandez-Taranco expressed concern over the $84 million deficit that the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) faces, which could soon force it to close schools and clinics in Gaza.

"I call on the international community to help UNRWA fulfil its important mission in health, education and social services in Gaza and elsewhere in the region," he stressed.

UNRWA assists, protects and advocates for some 4.7 million registered refugees in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria and the occupied Palestinian territory, and is funded almost entirely by voluntary contributions from UN member states.

Subscribe to Trend in Google News! Subscribe
Goldman Sachs, Freshfields working on possible Porsche IPO
Goldman Sachs, Freshfields working on possible Porsche IPO
Kremlin hopes for EU certification of Russia's vaccine
Kremlin hopes for EU certification of Russia's vaccine
Tesla's German plant hits snag as public consultation repeated
Tesla's German plant hits snag as public consultation repeated
Loading Bars
Russia planning several new business visits to Azerbaijan by year-end - official
Russian company to implement micro-mobile transport project in Baku
First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva shares Instagram post with footage from trip with President Ilham Aliyev to Zangilan (VIDEO)
Azerbaijan Investment Holding, Kazakhstan National Welfare Fund sign memorandum of co-op
SOFAZ’s revenues from profitable oil and gas sale up
Executive Power of Azerbaijan’s Tovuz district opens tender for road repairs
Kazakhstan, Russia discuss gas supply issues
Russian company may set up 'smart' bus stops in Azerbaijan's liberated lands
Azerbaijan publishes updated list of servicemen martyred during second Karabakh war
IBF VP talks growing interest of investors in Azerbaijan's liberated lands (VIDEO)
SOFAZ sees increase in budget revenues
Uzbekistan's GDP growth in 9M2021 sparks promising forecast
Azerbaijan developing preliminary conceptual design of railway route to liberated Kalbajar (PHOTO)
Goldman Sachs, Freshfields working on possible Porsche IPO
Kazakhstan to liquidate emergency wells in several regions
Large-amount loans issued in Iran's services sector
Azerbaijan, Russia talk cooperation opportunities in insurance sector
Azerbaijan records surplus in state budget
Azerbaijan's Sumgayit Technologies Park, Alat FEZ sign MoU on strategic co-op
Azerbaijan shares data on number of vaccinated citizens
Head of EU delegation talks financial aid to Azerbaijan, following end of Karabakh war
U.S. weekly jobless claims drop to 19-month low
Uzbek Central Bank publishes data on country's gold, currency reserves
Trade turnover between Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan grows sharply
FIMI buys Ashot Ashkelon stake from Elbit Systems for $88m
Azerbaijan confirms 2,005 more COVID-19 cases, 1,011 recoveries
Uzbek Central Bank reveals data on total liabilities of banks
Iran sees decrease in load/unload operations in Astara port
Kremlin hopes for EU certification of Russia's vaccine
Bahar Azadi gold coin price begins to rise in Iran
India enters 100-crore vaccine club to fight Covid, PM Modi says nation scripts history
Hungarian University Forum and alumni meeting in Baku
Central Bank of Iran shares data on loans issued for trade sector
Turkmenistan doubles greenhouse tomato exports to Russia
Turkey's position on opening Zangezur corridor - unchanged – President Erdogan
Iran reveals COVID-19 data for October 21
Georgia shares data on its top goods exported to Russia
Iran sees increase of cargo loading/unloading at its Charak port
Turkish President to attend opening of Azerbaijan’s Fuzuli International Airport
India offered humanitarian assistance to Afghans, Taliban say after 2nd meeting
'Turkic World' project aims to meet information demand - Turkish official
South Pars field revenues account for over half of Iran's state budget
Turkmenistan looks to launch new project jointly with UNDP, WB
Central Bank of Iran announces amount of loans issued in housing, construction sector
Turkmenistan interested in political stability, security in Afghanistan – Deputy FM
Iran’s CBI reveals amount of loans issued for industrial and mining sectors
India achieves the major milestone of ‘one billion’ vaccinations
Volume of loaded/unloaded cargo in Iran’s Fereidoonkenar port down
Ruling parties of Azerbaijan, Turkey to hold meeting
Iran records increase in exports to Uzbekistan
Iranian president to visit Ardabil Province on border with Azerbaijan
Uzbekistan reveals total assets for banks with/without state share
Every martyr will live forever in hearts of Azerbaijani people - President Ilham Aliyev
SOCAR discloses oil transportation volume via Baku-Supsa
Our people did not bow down during occupation, did not forget about their native lands - Azerbaijani president
Georgia-Russia trade turnover increases in 9M2021
Azerbaijan's military units in Kalbajar, Lachin undergo inspection amid coming winter (PHOTO/VIDEO)
Georgia shares data on COVID-19 cases for October 21
SOCAR’s capital investment plan fulfilled by over 63%
SOCAR reveals volume of electricity production, consumption
Iranian currency rates for October 21
Tesla's German plant hits snag as public consultation repeated
Iranian startup companies receive more loans from local banks
Activities in Iran’s Genaveh port increase
Egypt economy forecast to grow 5.1% in year to June, 5.5% in 2022/23
Pfizer vaccine very effective against Delta variant in adolescents in Israel
Iranians detained in Azerbaijan due to falsified of customs documents sent back to Iran
Exports of Iran to Tajikistan soar
Iran begins new round of power plant overhaul operations
Zangilan will become transport and logistical center of our country - President Aliyev
SOCAR fulfills oil refining plan by over 103%
Gas could lose market share to coal this winter
Russia sees record high of 36,339 daily COVID-19 cases, crisis center says
Does Europe have enough gas stocks to get through winter?
Azerbaijan considering proposals for building new modern gas-turbine power plant
Azerbaijan announces time of commissioning floating solar power plant
Azerbaijan to develop atlas of renewable energy potential
Kazakhstan eyes attracting investments in processing industry
Turkey shares data on number of cars transshipped via local ports in 9M2021
Iran to use alternative fuel for power plants
Iran shares data on grain imports from Russia
Azerbaijan updates on renewable energy projects with ACWA Power, Masdar
Iran looking to expand export to neighboring countries - President Raisi
Amount of loans issued by Iranian banks continue to grow
Iran provides several loans in agricultural sector
Oil mixed, but solid U.S. demand underpins sentiment
1 dead, 33 injured in restaurant explosion in northeast China
Iran, Kazakhstan urged to set out a new framework for bilateral ties
Number of beneficiaries receiving subsistence allowance increases in Georgia
ADB to prioritize Uzbekistan’s transformation to market-based economy through reforms (Exclusive)
COVID-19: New cases slightly up in Kazakhstan
India for including TRIPS waiver proposal in WTO’s response package
U.S. FDA clears Moderna, J&J COVID-19 boosters, backs use of different vaccine for boost
India plans to send 50,000 MT of wheat, medical aid to Afghanistan: Report
17 killed in car crash in Egypt
WHO Director General has lauded India's Covid vaccination efforts: Health Minister
Canada to unveil vaccine passport plans Thursday
Covaxin instilled self-confidence: ICMR chief
India: Adani Ports to shun cargo from Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran
U.S. readies plan to vaccinate kids ages 5-11 against COVID-19
All news