Beirut, 27 July 2023--The United Nations reaffirmed that failure to adhere to international law and Security Council resolutions on the question of Palestine hindered efforts to implement international programmes and frameworks in the region, including the Women, Peace and Security Agenda and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Adherence to international law and ensuring that no party enjoys impunity were prerequisites for achieving peace and justice for all peoples of the region.
This came in a report prepared annually by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) on the economic and social repercussions of the Israeli occupation on the living conditions of the Palestinian people in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and of the Arab population in the occupied Syrian Golan, issued as a Secretary-General’s note to the United Nations Economic and Social Council and to the General Assembly.
The report reviews Israeli policies and practices in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including settlement expansion in the occupied Syrian Golan and the West Bank - including East Jerusalem - and the Gaza blockade. It also sheds light on collective punishment and forcible transfer, and on other discriminatory policies and practices that have led to the deprivation of Palestinians and Syrians living under occupation of their rights.
The report sounds the alarm about living conditions in Gaza under the 16-year blockade of the Strip and recurrent military escalations. It asserts that achieving sustainable development in the Occupied Palestinian Territory in general is nearly impossible, with Israeli policies and practices eviscerating the Palestinian economy, depriving it from its productive capacity, and rendering it dependent on Israel and foreign aid.
According to the report, average gross domestic product (GDP) per capita remains under half of its 2011 level. Moreover, around a quarter of the Palestinian labour force are unemployed and more than half of Palestinians living under occupation are in need of humanitarian assistance.
Tarik Alami, Leader of the Governance and Conflict Prevention Cluster at ESCWA, presented the report to the Economic and Social Council on 26 July 2023. Representatives of the Council’s member States, including representatives of the State of Palestine and the Syrian Arab Republic, discussed its findings and proposed a draft resolution on it. The report will also be presented to the United Nations General Assembly during its next session for further consideration.
The full report is available here: https://bit.ly/SGReportEN
One of five United Nations regional commissions, ESCWA supports inclusive and sustainable economic and social development in Arab States, and works on enhancing regional integration.
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