On Friday 29 November 2013, an air of Palestine wafted through Beirut, which stood in solidarity in a day marked by ESCWA at the UN House. Every year on the same date, the Commission marks this day, stipulated by the UN General Assembly in 1977. This stand of solidarity is a reminder of the internationally-agreed upon rights of the Palestinian people, expressed through UN resolutions and still awaiting implementation while Palestinians endure an occupation that has not respected most of these international resolutions. Called for by ESCWA, the event attracted a crowd of high-level politicians and diplomats, staff from the diffferent UN entities, media figures and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs).
The participation of Lebanese and Palestinian Prime Najib Mikati and Ministers Rami Al-Hamadallah marked the ceremony, which was an expression of faith in the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, its right to decide its fate and to enjoy national independence and sovereignty.
The ceremony opened on a cultural note. The sounds of traditional Palestinian songs performed by Amal Kaawash rang through the hall, before the start of official statements, which included remarks by the guest of the day, Arab activist, actress and Goodwill Ambassador of the World Food Program (WFP) Hend Sabry, the message of the United Nations Secretary-General, delivered by UN Deputy Special Representative for Lebanon Robert Watkins, the statement of ESCWA, delivered by ESCWA Executive Secretary Rima Khalaf, and the speeches of the Lebanese and Paletsinian Prime Ministers.
Following the celebration, the guests of ESCWA inaugurated a handicraft exhibit prepared by Palestinian NGOs.
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