Mr. Speaker, tomorrow, rather than joining Israel at the negotiation table, the Palestinian Authority will submit a written request for independent statehood at the United Nations. Should it be recognized, it would be the first time in global history that a borderless state will be declared.
I stand in support of our government's long-standing position that the only solution to the current conflict is negotiation between the two parties. A unilateral Palestinian bid for statehood only serves to undermine this process by circumventing Israel as a relevant party. Israel has a right to be recognized as a Jewish state and to exist within safe and secure borders. As the Iranian ambassador to Egypt remarked, the Palestinians' push for full membership as a UN member state is “a step towards wiping out Israel”.
I urge the Palestinian Authority to return to talks to conclude a framework agreement on all final status issues. Our Prime Minister has taken a clear stand at the UN to reject this UDI.
I call on members of this House to join our government to condemn this unilateral action. Members should be prepared to consider all options.