RIYADH, (The Southern African Times) – Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister on Tuesday condemned Israel’s attempts to evict Palestinians from their homes.
Prince Faisal bin Farhan said the illegal practices of Israeli forces, especially during Ramadan, represented a flagrant violation of international charters.
His comments came during an emergency session of the Arab League foreign ministerial council to discuss Israeli violations in occupied Palestinian territories.
Prince Faisal said the Kingdom condemned the storming of the Al-Aqsa mosque by Israeli forces, violating the sanctity of worshippers, and attacks against the Palestinian people.
The Saudi foreign minister said the Kingdom “categorically rejects Israel’s plans and measures to evict Palestinians from their homes and impose sovereignty over their land.”
Saudi Arabia also condemned any unilateral measures violating international resolutions and undermining the chances of resuming the peace process.
Prince Faisal said: “The Kingdom stands with the Palestinian people, and supports all efforts aimed at reaching a just and comprehensive solution to the Palestinian issue, enabling the Palestinian people to establish their independent Palestinian state on the 1967 borders agreement, with east Jerusalem as its capital, in accordance with international resolutions and the Arab Peace Initiative”
Saudi Arabia urges the international community to take steps to ensure Israel halts its violations, and to protect the Palestinian people, their sanctities and rights, he added.
The Arab League foreign minister’s council called on the International Criminal Court (ICC) to proceed with a criminal investigation into war crimes committed by Israel against Palestinians.
It also called on the court to investigate the displacement of Palestinians from their homes in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood and other occupied Palestinian areas.
Weeks of clashes between Palestinians and Israeli security forces flared up to an exchange of fire on Monday between Hamas in Gaza and Israel. The fighting continued on Tuesday, drawing international concern and condemnation of Israel.
The Arab League’s council of foreign minsters approved the formation of a committee comprising of Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Palestine, Qatar, Egypt and Morocco.
The committee will communicate with members of the UN Security Council and other world powers to “urge them to take practical steps to stop the illegal Israeli policies and measures in Jerusalem.”
The foreign ministers strongly condemned the crimes committed by Israeli forces against unarmed Muslim worshipers in the Al-Aqsa Mosque, which escalated dangerously during Ramadan, and led to hundreds of worshippers being injured and arrested.
The statement also condemned the storming by Israel of Al-Aqsa, Islam’s third holiest site, saying that the attacks could ignite a cycle of violence that threatened regional and international security.
The council said it holds Israel responsible for the consequences of these crimes that violate UN resolutions and international law.
The ministers alo strongly condemned campaigns organized by Israeli settlers, and supported by the Israeli army and police, which aim to displace Palestinians from Jerusalem, including the families of the flashpoint Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood.
The council described the actions as an apartheid ethnic cleansing campaign, sponsored by the Israeli government.
It also strongly condemned the bombing and “excessive force” that deliberately targeted civilians in Gaza where at least 28 Palestinians have been killed. Two Israelis have been killed by rocket fire.