Middle East

German Foreign Minister condemns UN’s treatment of Israel

Marking the 70th anniversary of Israel’s admission to the United Nations, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas issued a statement via Twitter in support of the state founded in 1948.

Israel’s “security and right to exist must never be called into question by anyone anywhere,” Maas wrote on Saturday.

Maas condemned the UN’s treatment of the Jewish state, writing “Israel is still being denounced, treated in a biased manner and marginalized inappropriately in UN bodies to this day.”

“This state of affairs is painful and unsatisfactory,” Maas wrote, saying the UN was vital to international security and peace.

Germany would continue to “support Israel’s legitimate interests, to help strengthen its representation in the UN and to do our utmost to oppose any attempt to isolate or delegitimize Israel.”

Israel has criticized the United Nations for several years, complaining it is singled out because of its occupation and settlement on lands claimed by Palestinians.

Settlements and peace

Last Thursday, US envoy Jason Greenblatt described the UN Security Council’s “obsessive” focus on Israeli settlements a “farce.” Greenblatt, who is developing the US plan for Israeli-Palestinian peace, said settlements were not keeping Israel and the Palestinians from negotiating peace. The council should instead condemn Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad for their recent firing of hundreds of rockets from Gaza into Israel, he said.

The Palestinian demand for a two-state solution is supported by the UN and nearly all of its 193 member states.

Last week, the UN’s Humanitarian Coordinator called for an immediate halt to the Israeli authorities’ demolition of Palestinian owned property in East Jerusalem.

Deputy Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Jamie McGoldrick said: “Demolitions in East Jerusalem have increased at a staggering pace over the last month, leaving tens of Palestinians displaced and others who have lost their livelihoods overnight. This must stop.”

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