UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres (Front) attends the screening of the United Nations Day Concert 2020 in the General Assembly Hall at the UN headquarters in New York, on Oct. 22, 2020. (Mark Garten/UN Photo/Handout via Xinhua)
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres (Front) attends the screening of the United Nations Day Concert 2020 in the General Assembly Hall at the UN headquarters in New York, on Oct. 22, 2020. (Mark Garten/UN Photo/Handout via Xinhua)

Prospects of two-state solution to Israeli-Palestinian conflict more “distant”: UN chief

UNITED NATIONS, Nov. 27 /PNN/ Xinhua

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Friday said that the prospects of the two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict are becoming “more distant.”

The UN chief said that the “prospects for a viable two-state solution are growing more distant,” pointing to a host of factors which continue to cause great misery, including the expansion of illegal settlements, a significant spike in the demolition of Palestinian homes and structures, violence and continued militant activity.

In a message for the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, which falls on Nov. 29, the secretary-general noted that the COVID-19 pandemic has decimated the Palestinian economy and undermined the already fragile humanitarian, economic and political situation in Gaza, further entrenched by crippling restrictions on movement and access.

The secretary-general said that he remains committed to supporting Palestinians and Israelis to resolve the conflict and end the occupation “in line with relevant UN resolutions, international law and bilateral agreements in pursuit of the vision of two states.”

Guterres also expressed his extreme concern over the financial situation facing the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), appealing to all member states for urgent contributions to allow it to meet the critical humanitarian and development needs of Palestine refugees during the pandemic.

At the UN headquarters in New York on Dec. 1, the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People will convene high-level officials of member states, the secretary-general, intergovernmental

organizations and representatives of civil society, according to the UN spokesman’s office.

The committee will also launch the virtual exhibit entitled “The Writing is on the Wall: Annexation Past and Present.” The exhibition will examine the plight of the Palestinian people, focusing on the wall built in the Occupied Palestinian Territory.

The International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People is an annual observance designated by the UN General Assembly on Dec. 2, 1977 to commemorate its adoption of a resolution on Nov. 29, 1947 to partition the mandate of Palestine into two states.

Events commemorating this date are held at the UN headquarters in New York and UN offices in Geneva, Nairobi, Vienna, and other cities around the world.