UNITED NATIONS, Sept. 29 (Xinhua) -- The EU members currently on the Security Council -- Belgium, Estonia, France, Germany -- plus Ireland and Norway, the incoming council members, on Tuesday called for the resumption of Israeli-Palestinian negotiations on final-status issues.
"We remain convinced that sustainable peace, security and stability in the Middle East cannot be reached without a just, lasting and comprehensive solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in line with international law and relevant UN resolutions," said the countries in a joint statement.
Israel's commitment to suspend plans to unilaterally annex areas of the occupied Palestinian territory is a positive step and should become permanent, it said.
The EU countries reaffirmed their commitment and support to a negotiated and viable two-state solution built on the internationally agreed parameters and international law. It is essential that to this end, meaningful negotiations on all final-status issues resume between Israelis and Palestinians, said the statement.
"We remain ready to support Israelis and Palestinians in this regard and call on both sides to abstain from any unilateral actions which would be contrary to international law, exacerbate tensions or further undermine trust between the parties. We support all efforts to help resume credible negotiations, including the recent meeting held in Amman on Sept. 24 and the efforts of the Middle East Quartet."
The EU countries reaffirmed their deep concern about Israel's settlement activities, including actions taken in that context, such as forced transfers, evictions, demolitions and confiscations of homes in the occupied Palestinian territory, which are illegal under international law and constitute an obstacle to peace and to a negotiated two-state solution, said the statement, which was read out to reporters by Belgium's deputy permanent representative to the United Nations, Karen Van Vlierberge, before a Security Council meeting on the Middle East.
"The period from March to August 2020 saw the highest average destruction rate in four years. We call on Israel to immediately cease unlawful demolitions and to halt continued settlement expansion."
The EU countries said they will not recognize any changes to the 1967 borders, unless agreed by Israelis and Palestinians. The two-state solution, with Jerusalem as the future capital for both states, is the only way to ensure sustainable peace and stability in the region.
They condemned all acts of violence against civilians, including acts of terror and the firing of rockets into Israel, as well as acts of provocation, incitement and destruction. They reiterated their commitment to the security of Israel, including with regard to current and emerging threats in the region.
The EU countries welcomed the signing of the agreements between the United Arab Emirates and Israel, and between Bahrain and Israel. They recognized the role played by the United States in this regard and believed that these developments represent a positive contribution to peace and stability in the Middle East. Enditem