The suffering of the Palestinian people doubled this year, due to the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, according to Ahmed Aboul Gheit, Secretary-General of the Arab League (AL).
Speaking on Sunday, Aboul Gheit said that the Palestinians have remained captive between the hammer of the occupation’s brutality and its violations and racist practices, and the anvil of the pandemic.
The latter has been exacerbated in the Palestinian territories, in light of the occupation and the authorities’ insistence on depriving Palestinians of the most basic human rights, including health care.
Aboul Gheit’s remarks came during the AL’s celebration of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, where it asserted its keenness to emphasise the importance of the Palestinian issue to the Arab world.
He pointed out that this year’s event, which was approved by the United Nations General Assembly in its 1977 resolution, comes under exceptional global circumstances due to the coronavirus.
The Arab League head also said that this crisis has imposed an additional new challenge on the international community.
The continuing catastrophic consequences of the Israeli occupation remain a central issue and a major concern for all Arab countries, he added. This comes despite the global preoccupation with the pandemic, and the ongoing deprivation of the Palestinian people’s legitimate rights.
“We send a message of solidarity and hope to the Palestinians, that the injustice that has befallen them for more than 70 years will not last, and that the occupation will end as every other occupation known to history has done,” he said, “Experience has proven, beyond a reasonable doubt, that any attempts to undermine the rights of the Palestinian people and ignore the principles of international law and decisions of international legitimacy are doomed to failure and that any move towards imposing a fait accompli will end.”
Aboul Gheit confirmed that the Arab League aims to achieve a lasting and comprehensive peace in the region and political solution through the resumption of credible, serious negotiations. These are set to take place under United Nations (UN) supervision, based on relevant international laws and the Arab Peace Initiative.
He praised those countries that have given their support to the Palestine issue, and against the expansionist settlement practices of the occupation. He also made note of the world’s honourable support against Israeli annexation plans.