Chronicles Of The UN Resolutions On Jerusalem And Why President Trump Needs Some Historical Lessons, By Yusuf Aweda
Reactions have hovered the world over the recent decision of president Trump to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. This looks pretty more like an unscrupulous decision, made during a vital chess game that could expose the king to a disastrous ending.
In simple paradigm, President Trump’s decision is like Russia declaring Washington as the capital of Iran. Jerusalem is Internationally recognized as a Palestinian territory that was occupied militarily, forcefully and illegally by Israel in 1967.
It is a world on its own that conceives the wider world, it has a history that is connected to a people. Jerusalem has got documented chronicles of happenings that connect the modern politics and history being experienced on the world stage today. It is a spiritual ambiance of the three most popular religions in the world.
Just recently, The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) for example was so meticulous on November 18, 2017, when it expressed regret at Israel’s refusal to “implement the UNESCO request to appoint a permanent representative to be stationed in East Jerusalem”, and stressed the “urgent need to implement the UNESCO reactive monitoring mission to the Old city of Jerusalem and its Walls”. The word, ‘urgent’ in this statement is indeed urgent, this is necessary to avert any mayhem that could emanate from its delay.
Sadly, Muslim, Christian and Jewish Palestinians who have been part of the pristine history that directly connects them to Jerusalem are being jeopardized in crystal Injustice that has not only affected their civic rights and existentialism, but has also attempted to destroy their, cultural distinctiveness, religious proficiency, educational heritage and historical values.
UNITED NATIONS CONDEMNATION OF THE ISRAELI DISTORTION OF THE WORLD PEACE.
Till the recent time, Israel has been condemned by United Nations Human Rights Council in at least 45 resolutions, this is the highest time a nation has been condemned on the ground of unending catenated cases of terrorism, illegal occupation of the Palestinian land, and the deliberate violation of the fundamental human rights of children, women and unarmed men of Palestine.
The sanctity of Jerusalem has suffered from these violations and inhumane disposition of the apartheid regime of the Zionist state of Israel with the relentless American support.
THE UN RESOLUTIONS ON JERUSALEM
For the sake of history and the quest for justice, (which I strongly advise President Trump to embark on) it is important to revisit the UN resolutions on Jerusalem to guide our judgment on whether Trump’s action should be taken seriously or as another ostentatious and expensive comedy from the White House.
Resolution 242 by the UN Security Council: November 22, 1967, the unanimously adopted resolution called on Israel to withdraw its armed forces from territories occupied in the 1967 conflict.
Resolution 250: April 27, 1968, asked Israel not to hold a military parade in Jerusalem.
Resolution 251: May 2, 1968, condemned Israel holding the military parade in Jerusalem.
Resolution 252: May 21, 1968, asked Israel to cancel all activities in Jerusalem, and condemned the occupation of any land through armed aggression. It also demanded Israel “desist from taking any further action which tends to change the status” of the city.
Resolution 267: July 3, 1969, confirmed resolution 252, reaffirming that “acquisition of territory by military conquest is inadmissible”.
Resolution 271: September 15, 1969, condemned the extensive damage caused by arson to the Holy Al Aqsa Mosque, a building under the military occupation of Israel. It called on Israel to observe the provisions of the Geneva Conventions and “refrain from causing any hindrance to the discharge of the established functions of the Supreme Muslim Council of Jerusalem”, including “its plans for the maintenance and repair of the Islamic Holy Places” within the city.
Resolution 298: September 25, 1971, confirmed in “the clearest possible terms” that all actions taken by Israel to change the status of Jerusalem, such as land confiscation, were illegal.
Resolution 465: March 1, 1980, demanded Israel to stop the planning and construction of settlements in territories occupied since 1967, including Jerusalem. It also called on Israel to “dismantle the existing settlements”.
Resolution 476: June 30, 1980, reaffirmed the “overriding necessity for ending the prolonged occupation of Arab territories occupied by Israel since 1967” and reiterated that all measures which had altered the status of Jerusalem were “null and void” and had to be rescinded.
Resolution 478: August 20, 1980, condemned in “the strongest terms” the enactment of Israeli law proclaiming a change in status of Jerusalem. The resolution called on all states “that have established diplomatic missions” in Jerusalem to withdraw them from the city.
Resolution 672: October 12, 1990, expressed alarm at the violence which claimed more than twenty Palestinian lives at the al-Aqsa Mosque on October 8, 1990. The resolution condemned the acts of violence committed by Israeli security forces and referred to Israel as an “occupying power”.
Resolution 1073: September 28, 1996, expressed concern about developments in Jerusalem relating to Israel’s opening of an entrance to a tunnel near the al-Aqsa Mosque, which resulted in a number of civilian deaths, and called for “the safety and protection of Palestinian civilians to be ensured”.
Resolution 1322: October 7, 2000, denounced the visit made by Israeli opposition leader, Ariel Sharon, to the al-Aqsa Mosque and the “subsequent violence there and at other holy places” which resulted in more than 80 Palestinian deaths.
Resolution 1397: March 12, 2002, called on Palestinian and Israeli leaders to resume the peace process through negotiations regarding a political settlement.
Resolution 2334: December 23, 2016, condemned Israel’s construction of settlements in all territory occupied since 1967, including East Jerusalem. The UNSC emphasised it would not recognise any changes to the pre-1967 conflict lines, and stressed that the “cessation of all Israeli settlement activities is essential for salvaging the two-State solution”.
UN General Assembly
Resolution 2253: July 4, 1967, expressed concern at Israel’s attempts to change the status of Jerusalem and called for “all measures already taken” to be rescinded and no further such action.
Resolution 36/15: October 28, 1981,determined that Israel’s transformation of Jerusalem, including historical, cultural and religious sites, constituted a “flagrant violation of the principles of international law”. Such acts, the resolution stated, “constitute a serious obstruction to achieving a comprehensive and just peace in the Middle East”.
Resolution 55/130: February 28, 2001, demanded that Israel cooperate with a special committee set up to “investigate Israeli practices affecting the human rights of Palestinian people and other Arabs” in the occupied territories. The resolution expressed “grave concern” about the situation in Jerusalem “as a result of Israeli practices and measures … [especially] the excessive use of force … which has resulted in more than 160 Palestinian deaths”.
Resolution 10/14: December 12, 2003, requested the International Court of Justice to provide an advisory opinion on the legal consequences of Israel’s construction of a wall in the “Occupied Palestinian Territory, including in and around East Jerusalem”.
Resolution 60/104: January 18, 2006, requested the Special Committee, “pending complete termination of the Israeli occupation”, continue to investigate Israeli actions in “the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and other Arab territories” since 1967.
Resolution 70/89: December 15, 2015, condemned the continuation of Israeli occupation of the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, as a violation of international law. The resolution also denounced Israel’s “unlawful construction” of a wall inside occupied territories, including “in and around East Jerusalem”.
Resolution 71/96: December 23, 2016, reaffirmed that the Geneva Convention, relative to the protection of civilians during conflict, was applicable to the “Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and other Arab territories occupied by Israel since 1967”.
UNESCO’s resolution 150 in November 27, 1996, stated that the “Old City of Jerusalem” was inscribed on the endangered world heritage list, and labelled Israel’s opening of an entrance to a tunnel near the al-Aqsa Mosque “an act which has offended religious sensibilities in the world”.
The UNESCO’s decisions on Jerusalem also made a place of pride in the following resolutions.
Resolution 159: June 15, 2000, expressed concern at “the measures which continue to impede the free access of Palestinians to Jerusalem”.
184: April 2, 2010, expressed “deep concern” regarding Israeli archeological works, including excavations, at the al-Aqsa Mosque compound in Jerusalem. The resolution stated the works “contradict UNESCO decisions and conventions”.
192: January 13, 2014, criticised Israel’s “continuous, [and] intrusive” archeological demolitions, excavations and works in East Jerusalem.
196: May 22, 2015, stated “deep regret” at Israel’s “refusal to implement previous UNESCO decisions concerning Jerusalem” and called for the deployment of a permanent expert to East Jerusalem “to report on a regular basis about all the aspects covering all UNESCO fields of competence in East Jerusalem”.
THE DANGER OF TRUMP’S UNSCRUPULOUS DECISION
The dangers of president Trump’s decision in moving the capital of Israel to Jerusalem is a deliberate attempt to thwart the patience of the Palestinian people and to provoke their calmness.
The question on everyone’s lips is how such injustice would lead to peace?
This is a plan to trigger the erratic unrest in the region, and in the minds of people with true conscience.
President Trump is abruptly dragging the world into an unseen scenario. A scenario with huge consequences that has never been prepared for in the history of the world.
While the world morns the death of global distortion of history and political robbery that is being championed by the White House, I am in an a state of vacuum trying to comprehend Trump’s assertion that his decision would lead to peace.
How would injustice lead to peace? How would the Americans feel if they were Palestinians? What part of the land would be defined as the capital of the future Palestine state the the US claim it is looking towards achieving with this move? Does the world truly think and believe Palestinians would watch all these gleefully with no consequences or reactions? Does the world think Trump can triumph with this ‘grenade’ it has dropped on the world stage?
Yusuf Jimoh Aweda.
Center For Human Rectitude