“Setting out a horizon for a Palestinian state should be one of the vital conditions for moving from a pause in the fighting to a sustainable ceasefire.”


Thank you, President. The UK remains firmly committed to a two-state solution that guarantees security and stability for both the Israeli and the Palestinian people.

As we said in the Security Council last month, we are abstaining on this resolution because we believe that the first step towards achieving this goal is resolving the immediate crisis in Gaza. The fastest way to end the conflict is to secure a deal which gets the hostages out and allows for a pause in the fighting in Gaza. We must, then, work together to turn that pause into a sustainable, permanent ceasefire. 

Setting out a horizon for a Palestinian state should be one of the vital conditions for moving from a pause in the fighting to a sustainable ceasefire. Recognising a Palestinian State, including at the UN, should be part of that process. As my Foreign Secretary has said, “while this shouldn’t be at the start of a new process, it doesn’t have to be at the very end of the process”.

 President, we remain deeply concerned about the prospect of a major operation in Rafah. We are clear that we would not support this unless there is a very clear plan for how to protect civilians, who must be safe and able to access food, water and medical care. We have not seen that plan, so in these circumstances we would not support a major operation in Rafah.

The UK is doing all it can to reach a long-term solution to this crisis. In addition to our support for a deal which would secure a pause in the fighting and the immediate release of all hostages, we are pushing as hard as we can to get aid to Palestinian civilians; working with partners to deescalate the situation in the region; and building momentum towards a lasting peace. 

The UK has offered the Palestinian Authority our support as the new Palestinian government implements much-needed reforms. An effective Palestinian Authority is vital for lasting peace and progress towards a two-state solution. 

And just as the PA must act, so must Israel. This means releasing frozen funds, halting settlement expansion and holding to account those responsible for extremist settler violence. Last week, the UK announced a second package of sanctions targeting individuals and groups directly responsible for egregious violence against Palestinian civilians. The Israeli authorities must put a stop to this.

 President, in conclusion, we will continue to work urgently to bring the Gaza conflict to a sustainable end as quickly as possible, and to build a credible and irreversible pathway towards a two-state solution and lasting peace.

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