UN-backed civil society forum urges action on Middle East peace

Sounding a strong collective call to action, a broad cross-section of civil society gathered in Pretoria for a United Nations-backed Public Forum in Support of Israeli-Palestinian Peace stressed the urgent need to press for the immediate resumption of the political dialogue between the two sides, and for renewed efforts to keep talks focused on ending the occupation and alleviating the suffering of the Palestinian people.

Secretary-General ‘saddened’ by deaths of peacekeepers in Sinai

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon was ‘saddened’ to learn of the deaths of nine members of the independent peacekeeping force in the Sinai, a United Nations spokesperson said today.

Secretary-General thanks UN peacemaking official for quarter century of service

As the Peruvian Alvaro de Soto – whose peacemaking skills were put to use in the Middle East, Western Sahara and Myanmar, among other places – concludes a quarter century of service to the United Nations, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today expressed his profound gratitude to him for his contributions to the world body.

Renewed violence undercutting Middle East diplomatic efforts – UN official

Diplomatic initiatives to rejuvenate the Middle East peace process are making some progress, but they are being undermined by the deteriorating security situation on the ground, the United Nations political chief told the Security Council today, urging Israeli and Palestinian leaders to do their utmost to prevent the violence from escalating further.

Israelis and Palestinians unite to protect Jerusalem’s Old City – UNESCO

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) today announced today that it has adopted a landmark decision reaffirming the universal value of the Old City of Jerusalem, marking the first time that Israelis and Palestinians had worked together to protect the World Heritage site.

Ban Ki-moon lauds Arab League’s commitment to revitalize Middle East peace plan

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today welcomed the statement by a committee of League of Arab States regarding the resuscitation of the Arab Peace Initiative, which in the past he has called one of the pillars of the Israeli-Palestinian peace process.

Ban Ki-moon calls on Arab leaders to renew backing for Middle East peace plan

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today urged leaders meeting at the Summit of the League of Arab States to re-affirm their commitment to the Arab Peace Initiative, which he called one of the pillars of the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, while stressing that the world must build on the “new stirrings of potential” to resolve the long-running conflict in the Middle East.

Ban Ki-moon arrives in Riyadh on eve of Arab League Summit

Continuing a diplomatic tour of the Middle East to try to address the region’s hotspots, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has arrived in Riyadh, the Saudi capital, where tomorrow he will address the Summit of the League of Arab States.

UN meeting on Middle East peace urges support for new Palestinian Government

The international community has an obligation to support the new Palestinian National Unity Government without preconditions and to lift the aid restrictions imposed on it, according to participants in a United Nations meeting on Israeli-Palestinian peace.

Israel, Palestinians must both take steps on path to peace, Ban Ki-moon says

It is crucial that both Israel and the Palestinians take steps to reduce tensions in the Middle East in order to advance the peace process, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said in Jerusalem today after meeting Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert.