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Jérusalem/Mesures israéliennes - Rapport du Secrétaire général en application de la résolution 267 (1969)
12 May 1969
REPORT OF THE SECRETARY-GENERAL UNDER SECURITY COUNCIL
RESOLUTION 267(1969) OF 3 JULY 1969
1. The Security Council, in its resolution 267(1969) of 3 July 1969, requested the Secretary-General “to report to the Security Council on the implementation of this resolution”. In the same resolution, the Security Council, among other things, censured “in the strongest terms all measures taken to change the status of the City of Jerusalem”, confirmed that “all legislative and administrative measures and actions by Israel which purport to alter the status of Jerusalem including expropriation of land and properties thereon are invalid and cannot change that status”, urgently called once more upon Israel “to rescind forthwith all measures taken by it which may tend to change the status of the City of Jerusalem, and in future to refrain from all sections likely to have such an effect”, and requested Israel “to inform the Security Council without any further delay of its intentions with regard to the implementation of the provisions of this resolution”.
2. In order to obtain the information necessary for the discharge of his reporting responsibilities under Security Council resolution 267(1969), the Secretary-General addressed the following note to the Permanent Representative of Israel on 27 August 1969:
“The Secretary-General of the United Nations presents his compliments to the Permanent Representative of Israel to the United Nations and has the honour to refer to Security Council resolution S/RES/267 (1969) of 3 July 1969, concerning the status of the City of Jerusalem. Under the terms of that resolution the Council requested Israel ‘to inform the Security Council without any further delay of its intentions with regard to the implementation of the provisions of this resolution’ and requested the Secretary-General ‘to report to the Security Council on the implementation of this resolution’.
“The Permanent Representative of Israel will recall that on 4 August, in conversation with him, the Secretary-General referred to this question and inquired as to when the response of the Government of Israel to the Security Council resolution might be expected. The Secretary-General would be grateful if the Permanent Representative of Israel would be so kind as to convey to his Government the Secretary-General’s hope that its response on this most important matter may be soon forthcoming.
3. Receipt of this note was acknowledged by the Permanent Representative of Israel in the following message dated 2 September 1969:
“The Permanent Representative of Israel to the United Nations presents his compliments to the Secretary-General of the United Nations and has the honour to acknowledge receipt of the Secretary-General’s communication dated 27 August 1969 concerning Security Council resolution S/RES/267(1969), and to inform him that the communication has been transmitted to Jerusalem for consideration by the Israel Government.
“The Permanent Representative of Israel avails himself of this opportunity to renew to the Secretary-General the assurances of his highest consideration.”
4. On 15 October 1969, the Secretary-General addressed to the Permanent Representative of Israel a second note, the text of which is as follows:
“The Secretary-General of the United Nations presents his compliments to the Permanent Representative of Israel to the United Nations and has the honour to refer to Security Council resolution 267 (1969) of 3 July 1969 concerning the question of Jerusalem.
“In its resolution 267(1969), the Security Council requested Israel ‘to inform the Security Council without any further delay of its intentions with regard to the implementation of the provisions of this resolution’ and requested the Secretary-General ‘to report to the Security Council on the implementation of this resolution’. It is recalled that on 4 August in conversation with the Permanent Representative of Israel, the Secretary-General referred to this question and inquired as to when the response of the Government of Israel to the Security Council resolution might be expected. In a subsequent note verbale dated 27 August 1969, the Secretary-General requested the Permanent Representative of Israel to convey to his Government the Secretary-General’s communication and informed the Secretary-General that ‘the communication had been transmitted to Jerusalem for consideration by the Israel Government’. So far, the Secretary-General has received no response from the Israel Government, either directly or through the Permanent Representative.
“The Israel Government is, obviously, the only source for the information necessary, for the discharge of the Secretary-General’s reporting responsibilities under Security Council resolution 267(1969). Therefore, the Secretary-General once again requests the Israel Government to provide him with such information and he earnestly hopes that it will be made available to him at an early date. The Secretary-General will in any case be obliged in the very near future to report to the Security Council in fulfilment of the responsibilities placed on him in the above-mentioned resolution.
“The Secretary-General takes this opportunity to renew to the Permanent Representative the assurances of his highest consideration”.
5. On 21 November 1969, the Secretary-General addressed a third note to the Permanent Representative of Israel, which reads as follows:
“The Secretary-General of the United Nations presents his compliments to the Permanent Representative of Israel to the United Nations and has the honour to refer to the Secretary-General’s notes of 27 August and 15 October 1969 concerning the implementation of Security Council resolution 267(1969) of 3 July 1969 on the subject of Jerusalem.
“The Secretary-General considers it necessary to discharge his obligation to submit the report on this matter requested by the Security Council in the above-mentioned resolution within the next week. The Secretary-General, therefore, very much hopes that the information he has requested on this subject from the Government of Israel will be forthcoming before that time.
“The Secretary-General takes this opportunity to renew to the Permanent Representative of Israel the assurances of his highest consideration.”
6. The following reply dated 27 November 1969, has been received by the Secretary-General from the Permanent Representative of Israel:
“I am instructed by the Minister for Foreign Affairs to transmit to you the following letter:
‘In response to your note of 15 October 1969 to the Permanent Representative of Israel referring to the Security Council’s resolution of 3 July 1969, I wish to clarify further the present situation in Jerusalem and my Government’s attitude to the universal interest in its Holy Places.
‘The division of Jerusalem arose out of illicit armed action by Jordanian forces in 1948, in defiance of Security Council cease-fire appeals. Similarly, this division was terminated by hostilities initiated by Jordan in 1967. The circumstances under which the Jordanian régime came to an end were described in my letter to you of 10 July 1967 (A/6753,S/8052), as follows:
‘”On 5 June 1967, the Jordanian forces launched a destructive and unprovoked armed assault on the part of Jerusalem outside the walls. This attack was made despite Israel’s appeals to Jordan to abstain from hostilities. Dozens of Jerusalem citizens were killed and hundreds wounded.
‘”Artillery bombardment was directed against synagogues, the Church of Dormition, hospitals, centres of secular and religious learning, the Hebrew University and the Israel Museum. Intensive fire was directed against institutions and residential centres from positions in and near the Holy Places themselves, which were thus converted into military positions for shelling Jerusalem.”
‘The nineteen years during which the City was divided by a military demarcation line were a sombre episode in its long history. Jordanian control of east Jerusalem arose exclusively out of military conquest and had no other international authority.
‘Jerusalem has been the focus of Israel’s faith and nationhood for three thousand years and has been Israel’s centre of Government for two decades. It is inconceivable that Jerusalem should be torn apart again or that any international interests can be served by pressing for the City to be dismembered. These interests are based on the Holy Places of three great monotheistic religions. For the first time since 1948 the shrines of all faiths have been open to access by those who hold them sacred.
‘Israel has ensured that the Holy Places be administered under the responsibility of the religions concerned. Places of worship and religious institutions destroyed or damaged in the assaults of 1948 and 1967 have been or are being restored. I reiterated my Government’s willingness to work out agreements with the representative bodies of the three religions to ensure that the universal and sacred character of the Holy Places is appropriately expressed and free access to them guaranteed. My Government has initiated and maintained contact with all such bodies that are willing to discuss with us these matters of common concern.
‘Apart from these universal associations Jerusalem is a living secular city with 200,000 Jewish and 70,000 Arab inhabitants. Municipal and social services and public utilities have been extended to the eastern part of the City and are being steadily improved. Normal movement and visit, residence, business activity and employment are open to all citizens in all parts of the City. Its economic welfare is being advanced and plans are taking shape to enhance its dignity and beauty. The participation of over 7,000 Arab residents in the recent municipal elections in Jerusalem demonstrated their positive interest in the day-to-day administration of the united City.
‘The progress of the City during the past two years stands in sharp contrast to the situation which prevailed from 1948 to 1967 in the Jordan-occupied section. After its occupation in 1948 the Jewish quarter of the walled Old City was practically destroyed and scores of synagogues in it were laid waste. The ancient Jewish cemetery on the Mount of Olives was desecrated and partly demolished. Despite a solemn obligation in the Armistice Agreement, no Jews in Israel or anywhere in the world were allowed acces to their most sacred shrine, the Western (Wailing) Wall, or to any other place in Jordanian hands associated with Jewish history, religion and tradition. Even the Moslem Arab citizens of Israel were not allowed by Jordan to reach their Holy Places. Outbreaks of fighting, bloodshed and tension were frequent across the armistice lines which ran through the heart of the City.
‘International opinion has every reason to regret that the Security Council remained completely indifferent to the destruction and sacrilege of Jewish houses and prayer, residences and burial grounds and violation of the principle of free access to the Holy Places. It would be incongruous for a body which did nothing to prevent Jerusalem’s violent division to work now against its peaceful union or to censure measures taken to ensure the livelihood of all its inhabitants and to maintain public law and order despite occasional terrorist attacks upon the civil population organized, directed and financed by the very Jordanian authorities which showed such callous disregard for Jerusalem’s peace and sanctity on many ocasions during the past twenty years.
‘The sacred associations which are evoked by Jerusalem should not become the object of political and religious incitment without regard for the genuine interests of the city and its inhabitants, as was the case during the unfortunate recent Security Council debate.
‘As I stated in my letter of 10 July 1967, the Government of Israel is confident that world opinion will come to welcome the new prospect of seeing this ancient and historic metropolis thrive in unity, peace and spiritual elevation.
‘Our policy is to work for the City’s welfare in the intersts of all its inhabitants and that when the final peace is established it should embody agreements with the appropriate Christian and Moslem authorities to ensure expression of the universal religious interests involved.
‘In my statement to the General Assembly at its 1757th meeting on 19 September 1969 I said:
‘”Israel does not claim exclusive or unilateral jurisdiction in the Holy Places of Christianity and Islam in Jerusalem, and is willing to discuss this principle with those traditionally concerned. There is a versatile range of possibilities for working out a status for the Holy Places in such a manner as to promote Middle Eastern peace and ecumenical harmony. In the meantime, our policy is that the Moslem and Christian Holy Places should always be under the responsibility of those who hold them sacred. This principle has been in practical effect since 1967.”
‘I have the honour to request that this letter be circulated as an official document of the Security Council.
‘Please accept, Excellency, the assurances of my highest consideration.
) Abba EBAN’
) Yosef TEKOAH
Permanent Representative of Israel
to the United Nations