President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi participated, on Tuesday 21/11/2023, via video conference in the extraordinary summit of the BRICS group, which was held to discuss regional developments in the Middle East, especially the situation in the Gaza Strip.
President El-Sisi delivered a speech during the summit, the text of which is as follows:
"In the Name of Allah, the Most Compassionate, the Most Merciful"
Your Excellency, President Cyril Ramaphosa,
President of the Republic of South Africa
Your Excellencies, Leaders of the BRICS countries
Allow me at the outset to express appreciation for the invitation to this crucial meeting and extend sincere gratitude for the decision by the BRICS Summit in Johannesburg to invite Egypt to join the grouping; an invitation that was welcomed by my country. I am confident that it will empower us to foster closer cooperation and joint coordination based on the principles of solidarity, mutual respect and respect for international law.
Our summit comes at a critical juncture, as the Palestinian people are witnessing a continuous escalation in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank that has claimed the lives of thousands of civilians, two-thirds of them women and children. The entire sector endured indiscriminate retribution, siege and deprivation of sustenance as well as coerced displacement efforts. These appalling humanitarian scenes came to expose the inability of the international community and the inertia of human conscience.
Egypt has welcomed international efforts aimed at achieving a ceasefire and protecting civilians in the Gaza Strip, primarily UN Security Council Resolution 2712, which calls for reaching an immediate ceasefire and the establishment of humanitarian corridors stretched across the sector. Egypt is calling on the international community, in this regard, to pressure Israel, as the occupying power, to comply with the implementation of this resolution.
Egypt has opposed and condemned the killing of civilians from all sides, and at the same time it denounces, in the strongest terms, the targeting of civilians and civilian facilities, particularly hospitals. Egypt emphasizes that the international community bears humanitarian and political responsibility to save civilians in Gaza and to end these inhumane practices that render life and living in Gaza impossible, forcing people to abandon their homes and lands.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Egypt is exerting tireless and unwavering efforts to alleviate the suffering of the Palestinian people in Gaza. It has opened the Rafah border crossing since the very first moment to allow humanitarian aid and relief to enter into the sector. It has designated Al Arish airport to receive aid from world countries.
But the mechanisms placed by the Israeli authorities have obstructed the delivery of aid to its beneficiaries. Therefore, the aid entering Gaza is much less than the needs of its people. This requires the international community to ensure the delivery of aid in the adequate quantities for the sustainability of the people of Gaza.
Egypt has been opposed to pressure exercised on the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, and stands against attempts to force them to leave their land and homes, whether individually or collectively. Egypt also stands against any attempts to forcibly displace the Palestinians, inside or outside Gaza, especially that Palestinians leaving their land is a grave violation of international law and international humanitarian law. Also, the proposals of Israel reoccupying the Gaza Strip only make the situation worse and more complicated.
The international community stands silent before the unjustified violence by settlers against the Palestinians in the West Bank and the daily military incursions by the Israeli army in the West Bank, which are all unacceptable policies that contribute to igniting the region and increasing areas of tension in it.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
The Egyptian priorities are currently to stop the bloodshed through an immediate ceasefire, deliver humanitarian aid safely and sustainably, and avoid targeting civilians and civilian facilities in the Gaza Strip. We stress the need to resolve the roots of the conflict and deal with the Palestinian issue from a comprehensive and integrated perspective that guarantees the rights of the Palestinians to establish their independent state, along the borders of June 4, 1967, with East Jerusalem as its capital.