UAE calls for UN Security Council meeting on escalating West Bank violence

UN mission says developments put resolution and two-state solution 'at severe risk'

A hole from a stray bullet in the window of a hotel room in the West Bank city of Jenin. AFP
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The UAE on Thursday called for an urgent UN Security Council meeting to address the worsening situation in the West Bank, as Israel continues its military operations on Gaza.

The request, communicated through the spokeswoman for the UAE mission to UN Shahad Matar, emphasises the critical nature of the developments in the West Bank and their potential effect on a two-state solution between Israel and Palestine.

The region has seen an increase in “extremist settler violence” and frequent reports of Israeli military raids, Ms Matar said in a post on X, formerly Twitter.

“UAE has called for an urgent UNSC meeting tomorrow [Friday] on the rapidly escalating situation in the West Bank and its impact on the viability of the two-state solution.”

The UN agency for Palestinian refugees on Thursday issued a report that this year “has been the deadliest year for Palestinians in the West Bank since the UN began recording casualties in 2005".

It said that 300 Palestinians, including 79 children, have been killed since a deadly Hamas attack on Israeli soil spurred military operations against Gaza on October 7.

The violence in the West Bank has raised concerns about the future of a peaceful solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict and could jeopardise political efforts towards harmonious coexistence between the two sides.

“Extremist settler violence and reports of Israeli raids put a political horizon for Israel and Palestine at severe risk,” Ms Matar's post concluded.

The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Volker Turk also called for an end of escalations on Thursday after the UNRWA report was released.

“I call on Israel to take immediate, clear and effective steps to put an end to settler violence against the Palestinian population, to investigate all incidents of violence by settlers and Israeli security forces, to ensure effective protection of Palestinian communities against any form of forcible transfer, and to ensure the ability of herding communities displaced due to repeated attacks by armed settlers to return to their lands,” he said.

Updated: December 29, 2023, 9:53 AM