2019/12/05 at 10:32 مساءً

Osaily Discusses Conditions in Hebron with the Mayor of Montpellier as well as with a Delegation Accompanying the UN Special Coordinator

Hebron Mayor Khaled Osaily underlined once again the importance of  French-Palestinian relations which help build cooperation partnerships  between municipalities in both countries. He gave as an example the  twinning agreements between Hebron and both Arcueil and Belfort,

 which  have provided tremendous support to the 3-year old International  Campaign for the Inscription of Hebron on Unesco’s World Heritage List.  He also touched on the positive impact of recommendations adopted by the  French-Palestinian Decentralization Conference held in Hebron.

Osaily  was speaking at a meeting with Hélène Mandroux, Mayor of Montpellier  and her accompanying delegation. Mandroux is currently visiting the oPt  to get better acquainted with conditions there and also to sign a  twinning agreement with Bethlehem Municipality as part of the Project to  strengthen partnerships between Palestinian and French cities in line  with a recommendation adopted by the Decentralization Conference.

Osaily  expressed his joy at this rapid strengthening of cooperation and  bilateral relations. “The Palestinian people highly values the political  support provided by France to its cause which was recently reflected by  the French vote for Palestine’s Unesco membership. We hope that the  French Government will provide similar support to the Palestinian bid  for full membership of the UN”, he said.

Osaily then spoke about  conditions in Hebron, its history and the discriminatory division  imposed on the city by occupation authorities. He recalled the massacre  which took place exactly 18 years ago at Al Ibrahimi Mosque, leading  Israel to close down Hebron’s main arteries and to turn the Old City  into a ghost city. He condemned military orders to close shops in the  city center as well as policies to force Palestinians to leave their  homes in the Old City and around Al Ibrahimi Mosque. Osaily also spoke  in detail about aggressions and violations committed by occupation  authorities and settlers alike, which go against all Human Rights  conventions and laws.

The delegation then toured the Old City and  Al Ibrahimi Mosque. After an exchange of gifts, Ms. Mandroux regretted  conditions in Hebron and promised to convey what she saw to her  government and people. She also hoped to see peace and human justice  prevail and occupation end, enabling Palestinians to retrieve their  rights and to end the suffering in the Old City.

On a different  vein, Osaily met with Samer Abou Jabara, Director of Political Affairs  at the UN Special Coordinator Office, and Adam Hinds, Regional Affairs  Officer, with a view to getting better acquainted with conditions in  Hebron and examining the situation in the Old City caused by Israeli  occupation authorities and settlers.

Osaily explained to the  delegation the suffering of Palestinians in Tal al Rumaidah, underlining  the case of Ms. Hana’ Abou Haikal, who continues to live in the area  despite aggressions by settlers and security complications posed by the  army against her free movement. He called on the delegation to convey  this case to the Special Coordinator and to intervene in order to ease  the suffering of Ms. Abou Haikal and her neighbors. Osaily also called  for an end to provocative visits by students from settlements to Al  Ibrahimi Mosque as well as to the falsification of history by settler  organizations under the auspices of the Israeli government.

Speaking  about problems facing Hebron Municipality, Osaily said that one such  problem is the limited area of land available in the city and the fact  that most of this land is located in “C” areas which hinders the  execution of many vital projects. “A solution must be found to this  situation and Palestinians must be given administrative and security  control over their land”, he added.

Abu Jabarah said that this  visit aims at getting better acquainted with prevailing conditions and  at conveying them to the Special Coordinator so that he is informed of  the situation in Hebron and of problems facing its inhabitants.

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