Remarks at the General Assembly Hall Plenary meeting on Questions of Palestine and the Middle East

Andrew Weinstein
U.S. Public Delegate
New York, New York
November 30, 2022


Thank you, Mr. Chair and good afternoon.

The United States is deeply committed to a two-state solution, and firmly believes the Israeli and Palestinian people deserve equal measures of freedom and dignity. Our main focus is on supporting the parties on the ground and focusing our energy on initiatives that can lead us to that goal. We will work to improve the livelihoods of the Palestinian people, support on-going efforts that are bringing the region closer together, and building confidence that can enable constructive negotiations.

The West Bank is mired in a worrying period of heightened tension, mistrust, and violence. We are nearing the end of the deadliest year in the territory since 2004. Approximately 150 Palestinians and 29 Israelis have already been killed this year.

At this moment, sustainable peace feels impossible to achieve. And yet, we must exert ourselves to identify steps to stabilize the situation and explore serious initiatives to end the conflict.

However, rather than working to identify serious initiatives, we are at this moment engaged in the annual UN ritual of rubberstamping outdated and ineffective resolutions that purport to advance the cause of the Palestinian people but instead reveal a profound anti-Israel bias.

These resolutions are no substitute for what is necessary for peace – that is direct, good faith, negotiations between Israelis and the Palestinians. Continuing to adopt one-sided resolutions will bring us no closer to negotiations toward a two-state solution.

Instead of working together to create the conditions that would foster such negotiations, we are squandering more time grandstanding in UN chambers. Many of these resolutions task the UN to continue the work of anachronistic and problematic committees, programs, and divisions. These entities are one-sided, and do not serve the cause of peace. These entities in fact give a diplomatic veneer to what is in essence anti-Israeli processes and programs. Rather than just rubberstamping these resolutions, we should be debating ways in which we as member states and the UN can support the parties, and the broader shifts underway in the region. Attempts to insulate these bodies by creating open ended mandates is irresponsible. And worse, these resolutions set us back by perpetuating the false hope that there is a short-cut to Palestinian statehood.

As such, we will continue to refuse to engage on, and we will oppose, any and all one-sided or biased resolutions that denigrate Israel, and we encourage others to join us both in this principled position and in working towards practical solutions to the conflict.

Thank you.