Increasing number of countries viewing two-state solution as ‘urgent’, says EAM Jaishankar on situation in Gaza


A mid concerns over the prevailing situation in Gaza, External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar emphasised India’s longstanding stance advocating for a two-state solution to the Palestine issue during an interactive session at a security conference in Munich on Saturday.

He noted that an increasing number of nations are now not only endorsing this solution but also considering it as “more urgent” than before, particularly in light of the prevailing situation in Gaza.

Jaishankar addressed concerns over the October 7 attacks on Israeli cities by Hamas, describing them as acts of terrorism. He also highlighted the importance of Israel adhering to international humanitarian law in its response. While acknowledging Israel’s right to self-defence, Jaishankar emphasized the need for caution to minimize civilian casualties. The remarks were made in the presence of US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock.

Explaining New Delhi’s position on the conflict, he said there are different dimensions to it, and broadly classified them into four points. “Number one — we must be clear that what happened on October 7 was terrorism; no caveats, no justification, no explanation. It was terrorism,” he said.

“Number two, as Israel responds, it is important that Israel should have been very mindful of civilian casualties. It has an international obligation to observe humanitarian law,” Jaishankar said. The external affairs minister, mentioning point number three said the return of hostages today is imperative.

“Number four — There is a need for a humanitarian corridor, a sustainable humanitarian corridor to provide relief. And eventually, there has to be a permanent fix, a long-term fix. Otherwise, we are going to see a recurrence,” he said.

The external affairs minister also highlighted India’s long-held position on the Palestine issue. “Certainly India has long believed in a two-state solution. We have maintained that position for many decades and, I think, today many more countries in the world feel not just that the two-state solution is necessary, but it is more urgent than it was before,” he said.

Israel has been continuing its military offensive in Gaza as part of its retaliation to the unprecedented attack on Israeli cities by Hamas on October 7. Hamas killed around 1,200 people in Israel and kidnapped more than 220 others some of whom were released during a brief ceasefire.

Over 25,000 people have been killed in Gaza in the Israeli offensive, according to the Hamas-run authorities in Gaza. India has been calling for de-escalation of the situation and creating conditions for an early resumption of direct peace negotiations towards a two-state solution to the Palestine issue. India strongly condemned the terror attack by Hamas.

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