The United Nations Latin American and Caribbean Meeting in Support of Israeli-Palestinian Peace was held in Montevideo, Uruguay on 29 and 30 March 2011. The goal of the meeting was to “encourage broad international action, including by Latin American and Caribbean States, in support of Israeli-Palestinian peace and for achieving a solution to the conflict based on a shared vision of two States, Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace and security.” The delegation included members of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People: Ambassador Zahir Tanin of Afghanistan, Ambassador Oumar Daou of Mali, Mr. Riyad Mansour the Permanent Observer of Palestine, and Ambassador Abdou Salam Diallo of Senegal, as well as the Assistant Secretary General for Political Affairs, Mr. Oscar Fernandez-Taranco. The delegation was received by the Foreign Minister of Uruguay, Mr. Luis Almagro, the heads and members of the Foreign Committee of the Senate and Lower House of the Parliament, and Ambassador José Luis Cancela of Uruguay.
The Chair of the Committee, Ambassador Salam Diallo and the Foreign Minister of Uruguay welcomed the conference at its opening, followed by the Assistant to the Secretary General, Oscar Fernandez-Taranco who read a statement by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. The Secretary General’s statement urged for an agreement on permanent status issues and called for an end to any actions that could jeopardize peace talks aimed at establishing Palestinian statehood.
Saeb Erakat, a Member of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization, delivered the keynote address on behalf of Palestinian leadership. He emphasized that it is now decision-making time in terms of borders, refugees, settlements and other relevant issues which have been discussed extensively between Palestinians and Israelis.
Ambassador Zahir Tanin, Vice Chair of the Committee, chaired the first plenary, entitled, “Perceptions of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in Latin America and the Caribbean” as well as the concluding sessions of the conference. He also read the opening and concluding statements of the civil society meeting, aimed at “bringing civil society together to advance the Israeli-Palestinian peace process.”
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