June 25, 2018
Remarks by H.E. Antonio Guterres, United Nations Secretary-General, on “Maintenance of international peace and security: Comprehensive review of the situation in the Middle East and North Africa” during the 8293rd meeting of the Security Council.
United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres told Security Council that “the Israeli-Palestinian conflict remains central to the Middle Eastern quagmire.”
Speaking Monday (25 Jun) at the Security Council debate on security concerns in the Middle East and North African (MENA) region, the United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said across the region, decades-old conflicts, together with new ones, as well as deep-rooted social grievances, a shrinking of democratic space and the emergence of terrorism and new forms of violent extremism, are undermining peace, sustainable development and human rights.”
Pointing out the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the Sunni-Shia divide, ethnic schisms and other confrontations, Guterres also said “in a region once home to one of history’s greatest flowerings of culture and coexistence, we see many fault-lines at work, old and new, crossing each other and generating enormous volatility.”
The Secretary-General said “the Israeli-Palestinian conflict remains central to the Middle Eastern quagmire. Achieving a comprehensive, just and lasting two-state solution that allows Palestinians and Israelis to live side-by-side in peace, within secure and recognized borders, is essential for security and stability in the entire region. The recent tensions and violence in Gaza are a reminder of the fragility of the situation.”
The meeting of the Security Council under the name “Maintenance of international peace and security: comprehensive review of the situation in the Middle East and North Africa”was called on by the Russian Federation, which proposed to host a peace conference in 2022 to bring together heads of states, legislative and religious representatives from across the globe to take part in a multiethnic and multireligious dialogue.