South Australia calls for the recognition of the Palestinian state

June 27, 2017 by J-Wire Staff
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A dumped Labor backbencher has put a resolution to the South Australian parliament has Canberra to recognise the Palestinian state which was passed in the lower house last week.

Tony Piccolo put up the following resolution:

the house

Tony Piccolo

(a ) notes that Australian government is committed to a two-state solution to this Israel -Palestine conflict and that unless measures are taken this option will vanish;

(b ) affirms that the continuation of settlement b uilding is in violation of the fourth Geneva Convention, and various resolutions of the United Nations Security Council, the most recent being resolution  2334 (2016), and constitutes a major obstacle to peace;

(c ) believes that support for a two-state solution and for self-determination for both Israelis and Palestinians requires taking active measures by the international community; and

( d) calls on the commonwealth government to recognise the state of Palestine (as we have recognised the state of Israel) and announce the conditions and time lines to achieve such recognition.

Piccoli said: “The reason I have moved this motion this year is that this year marks some significant milestones in the history of Palestine. It is 100 years since the Balfour Declaration, 70 years since the UN Partition Plan, 50 years since the occupation of the state of Palestine (the West Bank), including East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip, 30 years since the beginning of the first intifada and 10 years since the signing of the beginning political divisions amongst Palestinian people.

Moving this motion in amended form does not diminish, in my view, our responsibility to acknowledge that Palestinians have suffered denial of their right to self-determination for a century, have been the victims of dispossession for 70 years and have suffered under what could effectively be described as a military occupation for 50 years. In my opinion, we must also accept that there is a growing awareness internationally that the greatest hope for change to the conflict is an end to the occupation of the Palestinian territories.

In moving this motion, there is no intention whatsoever to deny that the Jewish people have experienced and continue to experience victimisation, discrimination and injustice in some parts of the world. This reality, however, in my view, does not justify the international community turning a blind eye or indeed looking the other way at the victimisation, discrimination and injustices experienced by the Palestinian people in Israel, the occupied territories and refugee camps across the Middle East. One injustice cannot justify another injustice.”

Labor politician Nat Cook said at the debate: “The Palestinians have had their lands stolen and illegally settled upon by Israeli settlers and their access to work strictly regulated, making it near impossible for many Palestinians to eke out a living. Palestinians are subject to brutal military occupation, which sees a foreign military patrolling their streets. Palestinians have withstood the worst of chemical agents being used against them, namely, white phosphorus, which can stick to the skin and cause intense burning. It is a chemical that the Israel Defense Forces deployed against densely populated areas of Gaza, including schools.”

The president of the Jewish Community Council of SA Norman Schueler told J-Wire: “The nexus which started with Evatt has been shattered and it is a slap in the face. The loyalty and friendship between Labor and the Jewish Community have been thrown on the altar of populism.”

Anton Block, the president of The Executive Council of Australian Jewry, added: “The South Australian government should try to stay focused on fixing the state’s problems instead of dabbling in foreign policy issues on which it is obviously ignorant.   Recognition of a State of Palestine other than in the context of a comprehensive peace agreement with Israel will only make it more difficult to resolve the core issues of the Israel-Palestinian conflict, in particular Jerusalem, refugees, borders, settlements, security and water. The complex arrangements that will need to be made to address these issues will require co-operation between Israel and the Palestinians via detailed agreements, not grand posturing by outside parties who have nothing to lose by making a wrong call. There can be no Palestinian state without a Palestinian government that is capable of taking control of all its territory and of delivering on any agreements it enters into.  The Palestinian Authority in the West Bank and Hamas in Gaza remain hopelessly split.  No amount of recognition by other States can overcome that flaw. A Palestinian State cannot simply be wished into existence.”

Dr Colin Rubenstein, executive director AIJAC added: “This resolution is disappointing, ill-conceived and detrimental to the cause of peace it purports to advance. Even though the primary obstacle to peace is continued Palestinian intransigence,it singles out settlement building as the only obstacle worth mentioning.Further, blaming only Israel and conferring premature unilateral recognition, as the resolution proposes, is not only unhelpful, but also counter-productive. It only reinforces and rewards Palestinian incitement and intransigence rather than encouraging the genuine negotiations and compromises necessary to advance  the two-state outcome its  proponents claim to support.”




2 Responses to “South Australia calls for the recognition of the Palestinian state”
  1. Paul Winter says:

    The South Australian government is to be congratulated on its consistency. It recognized a state that does not exist just like it relied on energy from turbines on days when there was no wind.

  2. Lynne Newington says:

    The Israeli-Palestine issue ever the political football usually as a distraction from something or rather ……maybe to do with boredom.

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