International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, November 29

Sister Germaine Price, representing the Company of the Daughters of Charity at the United Nations, shares the news below from the UN in New York: 

[UN-NGO]Sixty five years ago, on November 29, 1947, the United Nations General Assembly adopted resolution 181, also known as the 1947 Partition Plan, a non-binding recommendation to partition western Palestine (the Mandate territory) into two new states, one Jewish and the other Arab. Its implementation depended on acceptance by both parties, Arabs and Jews. The resolution was adopted by a vote of 33-12 with 10 abstentions.

 Resolution 181 recognized the need for a Jewish statehood and a parallel Arab state but its validity as a potentially legal and binding document was never consummated because it was not accepted by the Arabs.

Since 1947,  various UN Security Council resolutions, the Madrid Principles- including land for peace- the Road Map, the  2002 Arab Peace Initiative and other existing agreements between the parties have presented clear outlines for achieving the two-state solution and  lasting peace in the region.  In spite of countless efforts throughout the years, conflict continues. In the midst of this ongoing conflict, the Palestinians decided to seek Non Member Observer State status in the General Assembly.

On Thursday, November 29, 2012, the 65th anniversary of the adoption of U.N. Resolution 181 that partitioned Palestine into separate Jewish and Arab states, the United Nations General Assembly voted overwhelmingly to recognize the sovereign state of Palestine, upgrading its observer status from “entity” to “non-member state.” With more than 190 members in the General Assembly, there were 138 votes in favor, nine against and 41 abstentions. Three countries did not take part.

The Secretary General, Ban Ki Moon, in his message on the international day of solidarity with the Palestinian people states: “The goal remains realizing the just and lasting peace for which generations of Palestinians and Israelis have been longing—a peace that will end the occupation that started in 1967, end the conflict and ensure that an independent, viable and sovereign State of Palestine lives side by side with a secure State of Israel.  I call on Israeli and Palestinian leaders to show vision and determination. I also urge the international community to help them forge a credible political path that will meet the legitimate aspirations of both sides.”

 It is uncertain, however, whether the UN vote will have a lasting effect on the stalemated peace efforts.

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