Together with Counsellor Suheir Gedeon, on the 20th of March 2015 the Ambassador of the State of Palestine met with Mr. Grant Morrison and Paul Raouche from the Department of International Assistance in the Department of Foreign Affairs and trade (DFAT)
PLO Executive Committee Member Dr. Hanan Ashrawi said:
“The results of the Israeli elections are the natural outcome of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s policies throughout his previous tenures of generating fear, hostility and distrust, as well as shifting the whole terrain of political discourse to the racist extreme.
The Australian Labour Party weighed in on the Palestinian Israel issue at its 2015 National Conference reaching an agreement on the subject that may see Australia acknowledging a Palestinian state based on two aspects– no deal formed at the next round of peace talks and a successfully elected Federal Labor Government.
After the diplomatic stalemate with Israel over the appointment of an Ambassador to cover both Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories, in February 2015 a resolution was found, with Sir Jim McClay being appointed New Zealand’s Representative to the Palestinian Authority
The Palestinian Foreign Minister Dr. Malki recently met with the Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs the Hon Julie Bishop at her office in Sydney. The Palestinian Minster explained to his counterpart the latest outstanding issues regarding the Israel- Palestine conflict, in particular the Palestinian attempt to end the Israeli Occupation through the Security Council.
The 2015 AFC Asian Cup witnessed an historical moment for the Palestinian people when the Palestinian national footbal team qualified for the very first time in the Asia cup that was held in Australia from the 9th – 31st of January. The groups participation in the tournament contributed to the enhancement of our team’s managerial and technical capabilities in order to meet challenges that are beyond the national and regional scope.
On 8 July 2014, another round of hostilities broke out in Gaza. It was dubbed Operation Protective Edge. About 50 days later, the fighting ended in a ceasefire agreement between Israel and Hamas. During the fighting, which included an incursion by ground forces, the Israeli military launched strikes from the air, sea and land against thousands of targets. More than 2,200 Palestinians were killed, including hundreds of children. About 18,000 homes were destroyed or badly damaged and more than 100,000 Palestinians were rendered homeless. Over the course of the fighting, Palestinians fired over 4,000 rockets and mortar shells from the Gaza Strip, mostly at civilian communities inside Israel. As a result, five civilians were killed in Israel, including a four-year-old boy. Sixty-seven Israeli soldiers were killed in the fighting.
Dr. Ashrawi stressed, “We cannot go back to business as usual and remain under the occupation. We need to resolve the root causes of Israeli violations and war crimes and put an end to the illegal, cruel and immoral occupation of Palestine and enable the Palestinians to fully exercise their right to self-determination.”
PLO Executive Committee member, Dr. Hanan Ashrawi, stressed, “Achieving a lasting peace based on the two-state solution is not contingent on the outcome of negotiations; ending the military occupation of Palestine, its people and resources remains the key to ensuring justice, peace and security.”
Dr. Ashrawi’s comments came during separate meetings with the European Union Representative to the West Bank, Gaza Strip and UNRWA, John Gatt-Rutter, and with Deputy Consul-General and Deputy Head of Mission of the British Consulate-General in New York, Nick Astbury at the PLO Headquarters in Ramallah.
PLO Executive Committee member, Dr. Hanan Ashrawi, strongly denounced the UN Security Council vote in which the resolution to end the Israeli occupationfailed to pass:
“The UN Security Council vote is outrageously shameful. It is ironic that while the United Nations designated 2014 as the International Year of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, the resolution failed to pass as an indication of a failure of will by some members of the international community. Furthermore, all the articles of the resolution are consistent with declared American policy, international law, UN resolutions, and the requirements of peace. The extent to which the U.S. has gone to protect Israeli impunity and lawlessness and to enable its criminal behavior is disgraceful and dangerous.