Monday, September 12, 2011


       Jakarta, Sept 12, 2011 (ANTARA) - As a staunch supporter of Palestine, Indonesia once again lobbied Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) members to support Palestine`s bid for full UN membership.
      A number of NAM member states had yet to recognize Palestine`s independence and therefore, the Indonesian government approached them, Michael Tene, a spokesman of the Indonesian foreign affairs ministry, said in Jakarta, on September 9, 2011.

      Palestinian leader Mahmud Abbas is due to present the bid for full UN membership on September 20 before the General Assembly despite opposition from Israel and its closest ally, the United States.
      The NAM met in Belgrade on September 5-6, 2011, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the first summit of Non-Aligned Countries held in the same city in 1961.
      At the Belgrade meeting, on September 6, 2011, NAM confirmed its support for a Palestinian bid for UN membership.
      "We will continue to support the Palestinian endeavor during the 66th session of the General Assembly for the recognition of the State of Palestine on the basis of the borders of the 4th of June 1967 with East Jerusalem as its capital, and to seek its admission as a full member in the United Nations," Egypt`s Foreign Minister Mohammed Kamel Amr told a press conference at the end of the two-day meeting.
       The Egyptian minister, who chaired the Belgrade meeting, recalled that most of the members of the NAM already recognize the Palestinian state.
      "Indonesia will make every effort to support the admission of Palestine into the UN. And the government`s stand has been made clear since the 16th NAM Ministerial Conference and the Commemoration of the NAM Golden Jubilee in Bali last May," Michael Tene said.

In the 16th NAM Ministerial Meeting in Bali, Indonesian Foreign Affairs Minister Marty Natalegawa and Egyptian Foreign Minister Nabil Abdalla El-Araby on May 24, 2011, discussed efforts to partner in advancing and supporting a concrete peace process in Palestine.

Indonesia and Egypt were doing their best to ask NAM members to recognize and support the existence of Palestine, Marty said after the meeting with his Egyptian counterpart.

Broto Wardoyo, observer of Middle Eastern issues, said among the five veto-wielding permanent members of the United Nations Security Council, the US would be a stumbling block to the admission of Palestine into the UN.

It would be difficult for the US to accept Palestine as a UN member, he said.

The Center for Indonesian National Policy Studies (CINAPS) appreciated the Indonesian government`s initiative to lobby the NAM members.

"Indonesia is a strategic lobbyist for Palestine`s UN membership bid, especially among Muslim-majority nations," Guspiabri Sumowigeno, the director of the CINAPS said on September 10, 2011.

He was of the view that he UN deeply owed Palestine for its membership because since the beginning Palestine had been included in the UN Decolonization Committee and received supports from many countries.

The UN, however, had given priorities to least-Muslim populated East Timor and South Sudan by facilitating a referendum for their independence, and left behind Palestine so far, he said.

East Timor and South Sudan were much later than Palestine in fighting for their independence, but now the two newest countries have become members of the UN, he added.

For him, it was a discrimination. For parts of the Muslim world, it has clearly reflected that not all religious communities have received equal treatment in the international norm and laws, he stated.

He urged the UN to listen to the wish of the Palestinian people, and should facilitate a referendum such as those in East Timor and South Sudan if the Palestinians want it.

The international Muslim communities` support for Palestine is expected to give a strong pressure to the US and other Western countries to recognize Palestine`s independence and stop the double standard attitude, according to Guspiabri.

"The independence of Palestine fully depends on the wish of the Palestinian people, not on any countries," he said.

Majority of the Indonesian Muslim population have been strongly supporting Palestine for its independence.

Last August 2011 in Palembang, S Sumatra, a number of youths grouped in the Youth Movement for Palestine staged a rally to condemn Israeli violence against Palestinians. The protest took place after Friday prayers in front of the Sultan Mahmud Badaruddin II Grand Mosque.

The Palestinian problem has become the Muslim world`s concern and Palestine must be freed, M Nopri, the rally`s coordinator, said.

The peaceful rally called Green Demonstration was also participated in by members of the Indonesian Environmental Forum (Walhi), the Green Indonesian Society, and members of the public sympathizing with the Palestinian cause.

According to Nopri, the Palestinian people have been suffering morally and physically due to the Israeli occupation. He urged Muslims all over the world must unite to help solve the Palestinian problem.

Nopri said his organization had sent volunteers to help the Palestinian people.

The South Sumatra Walhi`s Director Anwar Sadat said that he was very much concerned about the fate of the Palestinian people.

About 120 countries have recognized the state of Palestine to date.

The Palestinian official news agency Wafa recently quoted President Abbas as saying that a UN vote on an independent Palestine boosts the principle of two-state solution with Israel. The Palestinians want a state on the territories occupied by Israel during the 1967 Arab-Israeli war.

"Going to the UN doesn`t contradict with the core of the peace process; it is not a unilateral measure that aims at isolating Israel," Abbas said. ***6***


No comments:

Post a Comment