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Statement by H.E. Ambassador Hoang Chi Trung, Chargé d'Affaires a. i. on Agenda Item 16 “Question of Palestine” at the Plenary Meeting of the 63rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly
11-24-2008, 06:01 pm


by H.E. Ambassador Hoang Chi Trung, Chargé d'Affaires a. i.

on Agenda Item 16 “Question of Palestine

at the Plenary Meeting of the 63rd Session of the United Nations

General Assembly

New York, Monday, 24th  November 2008



Mr. President,

On the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, allow me to convey the most heartfelt greetings from the Government and people of Viet Nam to the Government and people of Palestine.

The Vietnamese Delegation associates itself with the statement delivered by the distinguished representative of Cuba on behalf of the Non-Aligned Movement.

Mr. President,

Looking back to a year awash with mixed developments with regard to the Middle East situation, my Delegation welcomes the positive signs visible across the region, including the continued engagement of Israel and Palestine in negotiations on final status issues as guided by the Annapolis process and the Road Map, the strong support at the international conferences held in Paris, Bethlehem, London and Berlin for the a viable Palestinian State, and the high-level diplomacy initiatives and mediation efforts of the Quartet, the League of Arab States and regional countries.

Alongside with the tangible progress reached between Israel and relevant parties on ceasefires, prisoners’ exchange and other areas of mutual concern, the further steps undertaken by the Palestinian Authority to enhance national unity, security and the rule of law, to promote foreign investment and socio-economic development reforms deserve our recognition and encouragement.  We share the intense aspiration for the process of peace to prevail despite so much frustration and despair.

Mr. President,

These measured progress, albeit doubly prized in the light of the difficult situation in the past two years, cannot conceal the fact that more than six decades after the United Nations General Assembly passed Resolution 181 on the Partition Plan and more than four decades after the Security Council adopted Resolution 242 on the Arab-Israel conflict, peace in the Middle East remains elusive and the Palestinian people continue to suffer immensely.

This year, despite the investment of so much hope, energy and effort in the peace process, we still witness the perpetuation of the longest military occupation in contemporary history, the continued denial and violation of the inalienable rights of Palestinians, including the right to self-determination and the right of the Palestine refugees to return, and the unjustifiable attacks against civilians of all sides.

Vietnam shares the concerns of the international community over Israel’s continued military incursions into the West Bank, its expansion of illegal settlements in the Palestinian territory, its ongoing construction of the separation wall, its imposition of closures and restrictions on freedom of movement and access to persons and goods in Gaza, and its continued detention of thousands of Palestinian prisoners.

In order to further facilitate the on-going negotiations, Israel must put an immediate end to its restrictive measures, open border crossings, and ensure unfettered access for humanitarian assistance to the Palestinian people in Gaza. We underline the importance of the unflagging commitment and contribution of the international community, especially the United Nations, the League of Arab States, the Quartet and regional countries along this line.

Mr. President,

Peace processes have never been easy ventures. They could only be satisfactorily nurtured as long as peaceful settlement of disputes, diplomatic negotiations and dialogue prevail over violence, the use of military force and confrontation. The Middle East conflict will remain unresolved unless all parties concerned go beyond the ordinary in their efforts to renounce violence, refrain from any action that can destabilize the explosive situation, implement hard-earned agreements, and abide scrupulously by their reciprocal obligations under the Roadmap and international law, particularly human rights and humanitarian laws.

In conclusion, Vietnam reaffirms its support for a just, comprehensive and lasting peace in the Middle East on the basis of relevant resolutions of the Security Council, including resolutions 242 (1967), 338 (1973), 1397 (2002) and 1515 (2003), the Madrid terms of reference and the principle of land for peace as well as the Arab Peace Initiative.

I thank you, Mr. President.

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