Friday 24 May 2019

Israel must agree to a Palestinian state

ISRAEL'S deputy ambassador, Ruth Zakh, makes it clear (Letters, June 15) that Israel is not prepared to withdraw to its "pre-1967 geographical contours" so that a Palestinian state can be established in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and Gaza.

Israel took over these territories by military force in June 1967. It now proposes to hold on permanently to parts (at least) of the West Bank, including East Jerusalem.

To do so is contrary to the long-established principle of international law that the acquisition of territory by military conquest is inadmissible, as the UN Security Council Resolution 242 has stated with emphasis on "the inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by war".

As stated by the deputy ambassador, Israel's excuse for abrogating this established principle, is that at nine miles, Israel's pre-1967 "waist" (that is, the width of the country from the Mediterranean to the borders of a new Palestinian state) is too thin for adequate defence.

In the years before 1967, Israel defended itself without difficulty, despite the thinness of its "waist".

Prime Minister Ariel Sharon said in May 2003 that "to hold 3.5 million Palestinians under occupation" was "a terrible thing for Israel and for the Palestinians". One way or another, this "terrible thing" must be ended.

That is why Palestinians are going to the UN in September to seek international recognition for a Palestinian state in the 1967 borders.

Yussef Dorkhom
Deputy Ambassador of Palestine
Blackrock, Co Dublin

Irish Independent

Today's news headlines, directly to your inbox every morning.

Don't Miss