Key Remarks by Prime Minister Dr. Mohammad Shtayyeh Ahead of the Cabinet 93rd Meeting


- The UNSC is scheduled to convene tomorrow for an open debate on the Middle East and will discuss the Palestinian question, H.E. President Mahmoud Abbas’ initiative to hold an international peace conference on the Middle East, and reactivating the Quartet.

- The Cabinet hails the stance of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia on rejecting normalization with Israel. The stance, announced by the Saudi Foreign Minister, Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud, affirmed that establishing ties between Saudi Arabia and Israel can only come after the establishment of an independent, sovereign State of Palestine on the 1967 borders, with East Jerusalem as its capital, on the basis of the Arab Peace Initiative. We salute our brothers in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, its King, government, and people for this position.

- Within the past days and weeks, we have witnessed a significant rise in Israel's colonial settlement expansion processes, land confiscations, home demolitions and uprooting of olive trees in many Palestinian villages and towns. I salute our people who defend their lands and homes. Additionally, we’ve seen Israeli settlers assaulting our citizens and obstructing their movement, which has led to threatening the lives of several children and women, including Jad Sawafta, who was about to celebrate his third birthday. Settlers attacked the car of Jad's family with stones, leaving the family traumatized and wounding Jad in his face.

- We condemn the settlers’ organized terror and call on the world to add these settlers’ names to terrorist lists that would prevent them from traveling.

- We continue to urge the United Nations, the Arab League, and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation to take the necessary measures against companies dealing with settlements, regardless of their nationality. We hope that such companies and countries are alerted to the dangers of violating international law and related resolutions, especially UNSC Resolution 2334.

- The settler organization “Ateret Cohanim” is attempting to convert the palace of Mufti Haj Amin al-Husseini in Sheikh Jarrah into a Jewish synagogue and increase the number of settlement units built around it to 56 settlement units. We condemn this assault as well as the confiscation of Haj Amin Al-Husseini's Palace.

- We also condemn Israel's ongoing closure of the Al- Ibrahimi Mosque and the storming of the Dome of the Rock, preventing maintenance workers from carrying out restoration works inside it and Al-Marwani Mosque. We call on the international community to intervene and stop the Israeli violations against Muslim and Christian holy sites.

- Two days ago, I briefed around 50 Ambassadors and Consuls of foreign and Arab countries on the holding of the elections. I have also spoken with Mr. Tor Wennesland, the United Nations Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, to demand the UN to intervene and facilitate the holding of Palestinian national elections,  including in occupied Jerusalem. In addition, we discussed the requirements for the success of the elections, including the presence of international observers.

- Until we receive the vaccine, wearing masks, hand washing, sterilization, and social distancing are the only available tool on hand to curb COVID-19, which is circulating new strains with great acceleration in several countries around the world. Thus, I emphasize our strict commitment to partial lockdown that have led to positive results, including a sharp decline in COVID-19 occupancy rates in hospitals. We hope that you will continue adhering to the current procedures until we pass this critical stage, with the least possible losses. We are amid discussions with Jordan and the Israeli side to close the borders/ bridges in order to confront the rapid spread of the mutated COVID-19 virus.

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