Press Release Palestinian Cabinet Meeting Feb. 22 2010

Palestinian National Authority

Government Media Center

Prime Ministers Office

PRESS STATEMENT

Palestinian Authority Cabinet Meeting, 22 February 2010

Palestinian Cabinet strongly condemned Israeli declaration of sites on occupied lands as Israeli heritage sites

PA welcomed mass participation in the 6th Anniversary of the Peaceful Resistance Campaign in Belin

And ratified the recommendations of the Ministerial Committee to Resist Settlements and The Wall

In its weekly session held in Ramallah today, chaired by Prime Minister, Salam Fayyad, the Palestinian Cabinet strongly condemned the Israeli decision considering Jerusalem Old City walls, the Ibrahimi Mosque in Hebron and Rachels Tomb in Bethlehem, all within 1967 occupied Palestinian land, as Israeli heritage sites.

The PA said the decision is part of an Israeli policy to consolidate its occupation and is a clear violation to international law. It could also escalate the struggle especially that it gives it an endless insoluble religious dimension. This policy can also on responsible for encouraging settlers attacks on religious sites in the occupied Palestinian Territory, as happened in Jericho last night.

The Cabinet called on the international community, mainly the UNESCO to condemn such Israeli decisions and to take immediate measures in order to force Israel to revert its decision and to stop its assaults on Palestinian cultural and archeological sites in all 1967 occupied territories, including east Jerusalem.

The Cabinet also ratified the recommendations of the Ministerial Committee to counter Settlements and the Wall , including the call to submit all related ratified proposals to the Planning Ministry to be included in the Government Plan and seek finance from donor countries for such proposals that achieve the objective of resisting settlements and the wall.

The cabinet said that this measure is part of the effort to achieve development and steadfastness in areas affected by settlements and the wall, including the Jordan valley and Area C . It also confirms the PAs full support to peaceful resistance against settlements and the wall.

In this context, the PA valued the mass participation in the ceremony to commemorate 6 years to the launch of the Belin peaceful resistance campaign. The Cabinet stressed that peaceful and popular efforts have regained international recognition of the just Palestinian cause and revealed the void Israeli excuses for the construction of settlements and the wall.

The Cabinet also stressed that the ICJ ruling gains value from the important role played by anti-wall committees. This in addition to the tangible steps taken by the international community of imposing restrictions on the import of settlement produce( mainly in Europe and Latin America) as well as stopping banking and investment dealings with companies working in settlements. The Cabinet stressed the value of the complimentary roles official and popular campaigning play in achieving development, ending the occupation and establishing a fully sovereign independent state.

The Cabinet welcomed the Arab League plan to appoint a permanent observer for Jerusalem Affairs. It considered it an important step to resist ongoing Israeli attacks on Palestinian land, contrary to international law, including the illegal excavations in Jerusalem (underneath Damascus Gate and Harods Gate), land confiscation in Silwan and ongoing attempts to demolish houses in AlBustan neighborhood in Jerusalem, demolition orders in Beit Hanina, leveling up of land in Hebron and announcing a new settlement plan to build 549 new units near Bet Safafa.

The Cabinet also welcomed the tendencies of France and Spain Foreign Ministries to recognize a Palestinian state by mid 2010, according to the PA plan to build state institutions.

Preparations for the Arab Summit

The Cabinet discussed the Memo presented by the Minister of National Economy with regards to the outcomes of the 85th Summit of the Arab Social and Economic Council, which would be presented to the Arab Summit in Tripoli next month. The Cabinet decided to form a temporary technical committee that would complete the Palestinian dossier to be presented to the summit. The dossier would include the required financial support, the plans and proposed projects and Palestinian suggestions for a new fund for less-developed states and the preparations for the small and medium sized projects. A permanent technical committee would also be formed to discuss all ministerial issues and mechanism for implementing projects. It also decided to make a contribution of 1 million dollar for the fund established by the initiative of Kuwaiti Prince to support small and medium sized projects for the private sector.

Palestine 2nd Investment Conference

The Cabinet renewed its call on all Arab and foreign states to invest in Palestine as to revive the Palestinian national economy and to support the PA state institution building plan. Economy Minister briefed the cabinet on his ministrys efforts in this regard along with the Investment Promotion Authority, for convening the 2nd investment conference in Bethlehem next June.

Palestinian Consumer Day

The Cabinet valued the efforts of the Palestinian Council for the Protection of the Consumer in creating awareness and promoting the national produce. The cabinet welcomed the decision of the council to consider 15 May a national day to mark the protection of the Palestinian consumer.

Chambers of Commerce Law

The Cabinet discussed the Chambers of Commerce Draft Law. It referred the draft for examination by ministers. It stressed the need for it completion as a preliminary step towards holding elections of chambers of commerce as it would improve Palestinian economic performance.

Financial situation

The Cabinet expressed gratitude to the Norwegian government for granting 41 million dollars to support PA budget for this year; and its call on Israel to ease restrictions imposed on Palestinians. It also praised the signature of the (5 million Euros) French Grant to support multi sector investments in Palestine. It also appreciated the European position with regards to recognizing the State of Palestine, in support of the government plan.

http://www.palestinecabinet.gov.ps/site/461/default.aspx?tabID=461&ItemID=26265&mid=3144&wversion=Production

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Press Release Palestinian Cabinet Meeting Feb 22 2010.doc

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