Israel's military occupation is using killings, arrests and changes to the character of Islamic and Christian religious sites in Jerusalem and Hebron in order to fulfil its expansionist ambitions and bring the state security and stability. None of these will work. The only way to achieve security and peace for all is to end the Israeli occupation of the occupied Palestinian territories.
Palestine is an observer state at the UN according to Resolution 67/19 of 2012 and the commitment to implement UN Security Council Resolution 2334 and other relevant resolutions, all of which call for ending the occupation and the need for the international community to assume its responsibilities and implement UN resolutions related to the Palestinian issue. This can be achieved by holding an international conference under the UN umbrella, with the participation of the International Quartet and Arab and international parties. Israel's arrogance while it behaves as if it is above the law and international covenants must be brought to an end.
Given Israel's continued aggression against the Palestinian people, we cannot have any standing or consideration without Palestinian unity. It is necessary to work quickly on national dialogue between the PLO factions and reinforce their unity in accordance with democratic principles, respect for each other's opinions, and commitment to public freedoms as per the law. There must also be a commitment to the national programme approved by successive National Council sessions aiming to end the division and strengthen national unity within the framework of the PLO, the sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people. Furthermore, the national project must be protected from attempts to liquidate it that have started to take different forms, and from the spread of divisions, frustration and misinformation through systematic psychological and media warfare, as well as the spread of false rumours and the distortion of facts.
I was surprised by the failure to hold local elections in the southern governorates, which were postponed due to the decision to hold the legislative election, which was also postponed until it can be held in the occupied Palestinian territories, especially Jerusalem, without any obstacles from the Israeli occupation. It is necessary to hold elections for unions and popular organisations in all northern and southern governorates so that they are more able to assume their responsibilities towards protecting the national project.
With the absence of national unity, the issue of the reconstruction of the Gaza Strip appears to be low on the list of priorities. Nobody seems to understand the seriousness of what is happening as a result of leaving this file unresolved and the increased suffering of the Palestinian people, especially with the approach of winter and the dire need to rebuild homes that were destroyed by Israel's military offensives. Everyone must take responsibility to begin reconstruction and lift the unjust siege imposed on our people. We need the cooperation and coordination of Egypt and the donor countries to end the suffering.
Moreover, the International Criminal Court's investigation into war crimes committed in the Gaza Strip by Israel and other parties must be supported as a decisive step towards justice for the Palestinians. In addition, Palestinian and Arab diplomats must urge the world to recognise Palestinian rights and invest international efforts to end the Israeli occupation and other repressive measures inside the occupied Palestinian territories.
This article first appeared in Arabic in Addustour on 4 October 2021
The views expressed in this article belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Middle East Monitor.