2004 News Story

Kingdom supports International Court of Justice giving opinion on Israel’s wall

Saudi Arabia has declared illegal and a breach of international law the wall of segregation currently being built by Israel in the West Bank. In public proceedings today before the International Court of Justice in The Hague, Holland, Permanent Representative to the United Nations Ambassador Fawzi Shobokshi also described the Israeli move as “provocative and imbalanced”. The Kingdom expressed support for the issuance by the International Court of Justice of an advisory opinion on the matter, and for a study of its adverse consequences.

Ambassador Shobokshi went on to state that the Kingdom also rejects the argument that such an advisory opinion on the issue of the wall would be at cross-purposes to negotiation efforts such as the ‘roadmap’, aimed at bringing about peace in the Middle East. On the contrary, he said, the legal opinion of the International Court of Justice would contribute to the target of eradicating terrorism and achieving a fair and lasting peace in the region, adding that Israel continues to deliberately change the territorial status quo to its own benefit and has been doing so since 1967. The wall, he said, is only the most recent manifestation of this policy, which denies a viable Palestinian state, refuses Palestinians the right of self-determination, and exacerbates a hatred that leads to increased violence.
As for using fear of terrorism as justification for installing the wall, Ambassador Shobokshi reiterated the Kingdom’s condemnation of terrorism in all its forms but stressed the need to address the issue of the motives and provocation that lead to it, commenting that international efforts against terrorism will not eradicate this phenomenon if handled without addressing its roots.