Saudi Foreign Minister Welcomes UN Security Council Resolution Calling For Cease Fire In Gaza

January 9, 2009

[Washington] -- Saudi Foreign Minister, HRH Prince Saud Al-Faisal, today welcomed the unanimous passage of a UN Security Council resolution calling for the immediate end to hostilities in Gaza. Prince Saud also called upon all parties to strictly adhere to the resolution to help achieve a just and comprehensive peace.

“This is a promising day,” said Prince Saud. “The Security Council has taken charge of the tragic crisis in Gaza, and we hope this step will pave the way to solving it and put an end to this bloodshed. By taking this action, the Security Council has restored confidence in the machinery of peacemaking.”

During the 13 days of conflict, the civilian death toll has exceeded 600, with thousands more injured. Prince Saud said, “The real joy is not in what we have accomplished here today but in Gaza, where many innocent lives will hopefully be spared as a consequence of this action.”

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is calling upon all parties to resume peace negotiations and affirmed that the Arab Peace Initiative maintains the full support of the Arab League. The Initiative, proposed by King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz of Saudi Arabia in 2002, has been endorsed by all Arab countries and more than 80 nations, including the United States. The Initiative calls for an Israeli withdrawal from territories occupied in 1967, the establishment of a Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as it capital, the just settlement of the refugee situation in exchange for peace and normal relations between Israel and all Arab countries, and a formal end to the conflict.

“Enough blood has been shed,” said Prince Saud. “It is time to stop the violence and start the peace.”