Sinn Féin Leader Gerry Adams TD has called on the Taoiseach, Enda Kenny to head up an initiative on behalf of the Irish State to secure European Union support for practical measures aimed at a long-term solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Mr Adams has written to the Taoiseach and a number of EU premiers asking them to use the space created by the recent ceasefire announcement in Gaza, to work to obtain a resolution at the United Nations Security Council requesting the resumption of serious peace negotiations within a defined period of time.
Gerry Adams said:
“The international community must now ensure that the ceasefire is respected and sustained but what is also clear is the need for a long-term solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. It cannot be acceptable for this conflict to erupt with depressing frequency every few years leading to thousands of needless deaths.
“With this in mind I have written to a number of EU premiers asking them to work to obtain a resolution at the United Nations Security Council requesting the resumption of serious peace negotiations within a defined period of time.
“These should be aimed at securing a two-State solution and the establishment of an independent Palestinian State on the borders of 4th of June 1967, with East Jerusalem as its Capital. All European states should now formally recognize the State of Palestine.
“I believe also that European states should support the deployment of a UN protection force in Gaza on the lines of that deployed in Kosovo.
“I have also written to An Taoiseach, asking him to support this approach and to head up an initiative on behalf of the Irish State to achieve these objectives.
“It is clear that the people of Gaza need urgent and massive humanitarian aid. There is now a pressing need to rebuild Gaza. There are now 450,000 people there without homes. There is no electricity, no running water and no sewage system as hundreds of thousands of boys and girls are due to start a new school year. The international community must begin immediately to restore the food, medical, fuel, and electricity needs of 1.7 million people.
“The people of Gaza and of the Palestinian territories need hope. They need to believe that there is a real possibility of positive change in their conditions. They need their rights as human beings and their national rights as Palestinians respected and upheld by the international community. They also need to know that international law will be respected. The Irish Government must do all that it can to ensure that international law is upheld and I have asked the Taoiseach you use his influence with our EU partners to advance this.
“I have travelled to the region on several occasions and have met many of the representatives of the Palestinian people, including Hamas and the Palestinian Authority. I have also met Israeli representatives. In my conversations I have stressed that inclusive dialogue, involving substantive and inclusive negotiations, and involving all of the participants is the only way forward. They need the help of the international community to achieve this and I am appealing to the Irish Government to use its influence positively in this regard.”