Addressing the UN Security Council emergency meeting on the escalation in Israel and Gaza, Palestinian Authority Foreign Minister Riad al-Maliki blasts Israeli forces for “storming” the Temple Mount/Haram al-Sharif compound, the “holiest of sites, on the holiest of months, on the holiest of nights.”
“Did they think they would bear no consequences? Did they expect Palestinians to wait until they seize the next house? Did they expect Palestinians to coexist with… occupation? … There are no people on earth that would accept this reality,” al-Maliki says.
“We’re not two neighbors living side by side in peace. Israel are armed thieves that entered our house and are oppressing our people… and then they claim the right to security that they deny us,” he says.
Al-Maliki says that when Israel hears world leaders defend its right to self-defense, it “emboldens them to kill Palestinians in their sleep.”
“Iron Dome shelters while our people in Gaza are besieged, trapped and with nowhere to go. It is Palestinian civilians who need protection,” he says.
“There are no words to describe the horrors that our people are experiencing,” says al-Maliki, who lists some of the latest round’s youngest victims.
Al-Maliki asks member states what Palestinians are supposed to do to resist Israeli violence in the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza.
The PA foreign minister tears into the former US administration. “Where are they? Those who negotiate agreements between countries who are not at war? Where are they? Those who thought [Middle East agreements could be negotiated at the] Palestinians’ expense. Where are they? Those real estate agents who decided they could sell what they do not own to those who have no rightful claim.”
Al-Maliki says the PA still backs a two-state solution to the conflict based on the pre-1967 borders.
He notes the strong support from nations around the world for the Palestinians.
“These nations are informed by their own history, their own struggle for freedom and they know oppression when they see it,” he says.