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For the first time in its history, the UN commemorated on Monday the Nakba, which occurred in 1948 and turned 700,000 Palestinians into refugees almost overnight.


The creation of this commemorative day was passed by a resolution voted by the General Assembly in November 2022. Speaking at a high-level event at United Nations Headquarters in New York, Rosemary DiCarlo, Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs and Peacebuilding, said that “the legacy of this event lives on, inspiring us to continue our tireless efforts to find a peaceful and lasting solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”


Ms. DiCarlo expressed deep concern about the deteriorating prospects for restarting the peace process towards a two-state solution, explaining that the expansion of Israeli settlements in the occupied territories, recent violence and violations of Palestinian rights by the occupying forces make it difficult to achieve peace. “The position of the United Nations is clear: the occupation must end. A two-state solution must be found in accordance with international law,” the UN official said.


The mass displacement of 1948 meant that Palestinians had to carry what they could or could be carried in trucks from their homes to areas outside the new state of Israel. According to the UN agency set up to assist displaced Palestinians (UNRWA), some 5.9 million Palestinians are currently registered as refugees.