The South African Government said last night that it regrets yet another agreement related to the fate of the Palestinians has taken place without engaging the people of Palestine in it.
"The South African Government has noted with concern the developments regarding the normalization of relations between Israel and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), which took place on Thursday, 13 August 2020. Peace and stability in the Middle East, and particularly a sustainable solution regarding the plight of the Palestinian people, is of critical importance to South Africa," it said in a statement in reference to the UAE-Israel-US agreement to normalize relations between Israel and the Arab Gulf state.
"While the UAE has the sovereign right to set its diplomatic relations with the government of Israel, it is regrettable that it has done so based on yet another agreement related to the fate of the Palestinian people without engaging the people of Palestine," said the South African Government.
The UAE claimed that as a result of this agreement Israel will halt all threats of annexation of occupied West Bank land. However, said the South African government, it "does not commit Israel to halting of plans to further extend Israeli sovereignty over Palestinian territories and its people," neither "commit the government of Israel to negotiations guided by the internationally agreed parameters."
The South African Government said that the concerns it has in relation to the agreement made by the three countries were amplified by the comments made by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in a televised address, following the announcement of the normalization of relations with the UAE, in which he stated that he remains committed to annexing parts of West Bank, and that he agreed to only "delay" further annexation.
"South Africa notes the concerns expressed by the Palestinian leadership and wishes to express its conviction that any initiative aimed at a solution to the conflict, must take into account the needs and aspirations of the Palestinian people. In this regard, South Africa remains committed to the independence of Palestine under the two-state solution, based on the international recognition and independence of the viable State of Palestine, based on the 4 June 1967 borders, with East Jerusalem as its capital, existing peacefully side by side with its neighbors. We hold that the outstanding final status issues must be resolved through negotiations between the parties, with support from the international community," concluded the statement.