29 May 1998 (A/52/926, S/1998/444)

Letter from Mr. Marwan Jilani, Charge d’Affaires, a.i., Permanent Observer Mission of Palestine to the U.N., to the Secretary-General of the United Nations and the President of the Security Council: (Military Parade)

Israel, the occupying Power, has committed yet another illegal and provocative action in occupied Jerusalem, in flagrant violation of international law and relevant United Nations resolutions, and in blatant defiance of the international community.

On Sunday 24 May 1998, Israel, the occupying Power, staged a military parade in Jerusalem to mark the 31st anniversary of the occupation of East Jerusalem. This action by the Israeli government blatantly violates the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949, the Hague Regulations of 1907, and various relevant resolutions of the General Assembly and the Security Council.

The Security Council has affirmed, in twenty four resolutions, the applicability of the Fourth Geneva Convention to all the territories occupied by Israel in 1967, including Jerusalem, and has repeatedly declared that all measures and arrangements taken by Israel, including the legislative and administrative ones, aimed at changing the legal status of the city are null and void and without any legal validity whatsoever. Furthermore, the Security Council specifically called upon Israel, in its resolutions 162 (1961) of 11 April 1961 and 250 (1968) of 27 April 1968, to refrain from holding military parades in Jerusalem and it unanimously deplored such an action in resolution 251 (1968) of 2 May 1968.

In the past several weeks, moreover, Israel has committed a series of dangerous actions that threaten to plunge the region into an even more dire and unstable situation. These provocations, which include the indiscriminate use of fire during the Palestinian commemoration of the 50th anniversary of al-Nakba, the burning of one of the gates of Al-Haram Al-Sharif (Bab Al-Ghawanima), the attempt on 25 May 1998 by Jewish extremists to establish a new settlement in the Old City, and the military parade in Jerusalem, have all been undertaken while last attempts are being exhausted by the United States and the international community to save the peace process.

We condemn the above-mentioned Israeli actions and we call upon the international community to exert the necessary pressure on Israel to cease all illegal and provocative measures directed against the Palestinian people and against the peace process. The Security Council should resume its responsibilities with regard to the maintenance of international peace and security in this region and must firmly respond to Israel’s continuing violations of international law and Security Council resolutions.