Statement on UN General Assembly vote on Palestine

The resolution is very narrowly framed and neither confers recognition of Palestine as a state by the UN nor gives its representatives the full rights of UN members.

I have long been on the record as a supporter of the two-state solution as the only realistic way to enable the people of Israel and Palestine to live “side by side in peace and security within recognised borders” as the resolution states.

I note that the resolution calls for “renewed and co-ordinated efforts by the international community aimed at achieving without delay … a just, lasting and peaceful settlement…”

As a terrorist organisation responsible for the horrific attacks of October 7, there is no place for Hamas in a future Palestinian state.

I take on board the view of some, that the aftermath of a terrorist attack is the wrong time to confer new privileges.

No one wanted to be at this moment of conflict, except Hamas.

But, properly acted on, this very narrowly framed set of actions provides an opportunity for the Palestinian Authority to politically neutralise Hamas.

The resolution confers responsibility on the Palestinian Authority to undertake the reforms necessary to give the international community the confidence that it can resume its responsibilities for peacemaking.

Australia is in no way central to resolving the current conflict, but as Foreign Minister Penny Wong puts it “Australians do want Australia to add our voice to efforts of the international community to broker peace”.

Steps like this could encourage this process.

I again call for a humanitarian ceasefire and urge Israel not to extend its ground invasion of Rafah.

Hamas must release the remaining hostages and Israel must remove roadblocks to humanitarian aid while a ceasefire and peace deal are secured.

As always, my priority is for the safety and security of the Goldstein community and for our social cohesion as a nation.

For these reasons I do not oppose the resolution.

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