UN Quartet in Vienna expresses ‘grave concern’ over rising tensions

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon: Exercise ‘maximum restraint’

By
October 25, 2015 01:09
2 minute read.
UNITED NATIONS Secretary General Ban Ki-moon arrives to address media at the UN headquarters

UNITED NATIONS Secretary General Ban Ki-moon arrives to address media at the UN headquarters. (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

NEW YORK – Representatives of the UN Quartet for the Middle East expressed “grave concern” over the tensions between Israelis and Palestinians at their meeting in Vienna on Friday.

They condemned “all acts of terror and violence against civilians” and called for “maximum restraint and avoidance of provocative rhetoric and actions.”

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


The Quartet encouraged Israel to work together with Jordan in order to “uphold the status quo at the holy sites in Jerusalem in both word and practice, recognizing the special role of Jordan as per its peace treaty with Israel.”

The group underlined the importance of “restoring confidence and hope in the viability of a negotiated twostate solution that resolves the final-status issues, including that of Jerusalem, and ends the occupation that began in 1967.”

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon joined the meeting via video conference. Just before doing so, he told journalists he was “profoundly troubled” by what he saw and heard during his snap visit to the region on Tuesday.

“I strongly condemned all acts of terror and violence, and I offer condolences to the families of those who have been killed or injured,” the secretary-general said.

“The tensions around the Haram Al-Sharif/Temple Mount have the potential to add a religious dimension to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict that could be exploited by extremists on both sides, with potentially dangerous regional implications.”



Ban said he welcomes “the assurance of Prime Minister Netanyahu that Israel has no intention of changing the status quo,” and that it is “critical” Israel “exercise maximum restraint” and “make sure that security measures are properly calibrated.”

Not doing so may “breed the very frustrations and anxieties which perpetuate violence,” he said.

Ban seemed to align with the many representatives at the UN who have accused Israel of using collective punishment against Palestinians in the past few weeks.

“One neighborhood closure creates a community of despair,” he said. “One funeral can spread rage among thousands. Force should be a last resort, not a first resort.”

The core of the conflict is political and will require “a serious negotiation process by two partners willing to make the necessary compromises to reach the long-desired goal of a two-state solution,” the secretary-general said.

He added that he strongly advised Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to meet and attempt to calm the tensions.

The UN Quartet envoys should travel to the region in the near future and “engage directly with the parties to encourage them to take concrete actions” in order to “move toward an end to occupation and the establishment of a viable, sustainable Palestinian state, living in peace with Israel,” Ban said.

Related Content

An explosion is seen following an Israeli air strike in the southern Gaza Strip (July 20, 2018).
August 16, 2018
Report: Egyptian intelligence chief visits Israel to discuss Gaza truce

By YASSER OKBI/MAARIV