Follow UNISPAL Twitter RSS
Summary record of the 32nd meeting
Held at Headquarters, New York, on Wednesday, 31 October, 2007, at 10 a.m.
Chairman: Mr. Wolfe ...................................................................................................... (Jamaica)
Agenda item 63: Advancement of women ( continued)
Agenda item 66: Promotion and protection of the rights of children ( continued)
Agenda item 70: Promotion and protection of human rights (continued)
(b) Human rights questions, including alternative approaches for improving the effective enjoyment of human rights and fundamental freedoms ( continued)
(c) Human rights situations and reports of special rapporteurs and representatives ( continued)
(e) Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (continued )
(b) Human rights questions, including alternative approaches for improving the effective enjoyment of human rights and fundamental freedoms (continued ) (A/62/183, 207, 212, 214, 218, 222, 225, 227, 254, 255, 265, 280, 286, 287, 288, 289, 293, 298, 304 and 317; A/C.3/62/3)
(c) Human rights situations and reports of special rapporteurs and representatives (continued ) (A/62/213, 223, 263, 264, 275, 313, 318, 354 and 498; A/C.3/62/4)
(e) Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (continued ) (A/62/230)
33. Mr. Khani-Jooyabad (Islamic Republic of Iran) ...
35. He regretted that agenda item 70 (c) was misused by certain countries that tended to attribute human rights violations to others while portraying their own human rights record as perfect. Certain Western countries disregarded human rights violations in their part of the world, such as the situation at Guantánamo Bay, extraordinary rendition and secret detention centres in Europe, violations of the rights of refugees, asylum-seekers and migrants in Europe, the United States of America and Canada, and the inhumane treatment of the Palestinian people, supported by the United States and Canada.
59. Mr. Al-Saif (Kuwait) ...
61. His delegation appreciated the objectivity and transparency of the report of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967, which clearly showed that Israeli violations of Palestine rights were systematically planned, in total disregard of both Security Council and General Assembly resolutions. Such violations were conducive to extremism among both the Israelis, who felt absolute superiority, and the besieged Palestinians, who saw only death and despair about them. It was admirable for the Special Rapporteur to remind Israel that accusing him of supporting terrorism would not deter him from expressing the dictates of his conscience, and one must remember that many of the world’s leaders had been dubbed terrorists in their struggles for the right of self-determination.
62. It was painful to recall the recent statement by the Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs regarding the deterioration of the humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip and the considerable decline in the humanitarian supplies allowed to enter the area. The Government of Kuwait therefore supported the suggestion of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967 that the International Court of Justice should be asked to render an advisory opinion on the legal consequences of the prolonged occupation.
63. Mr. Pak Tok Hun (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea) said that the global “war on terrorism” had resulted in indiscriminate mass killing and violations of human rights and fundamental freedoms. The United States invasion and occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan had caused the loss of millions of lives. Interference in the internal affairs of Iraq, Afghanistan and Palestine had threatened the people’s very survival. No human rights could be guaranteed without the exercise of national sovereignty.
64. The full enjoyment of human rights also required the elimination of double standards, selectivity and politicization. While Israel’s unlawful acts in the occupied territories and the overseas secret prisons run by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) went largely unnoticed, developing countries had been wrongly singled out as human rights violators, particularly through the adoption of human rights resolutions. Such double standards led to confrontation and distrust and undermined human rights efforts.
74. Ms. Abdelhady-Nasser (Observer for Palestine) reaffirmed the applicability of international legal instruments, including humanitarian and human rights law, to the situation of the Palestinian people. Instruments such as the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War and relevant United Nations resolutions as well as the advisory opinion rendered on 9 July 2004 by the International Court of Justice on the Legal Consequences of the Construction of a Wall in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (see A/ES-10/273 and Corr.1) constituted the fundamental basis for an accurate examination of the human rights situation of the Palestinian people. Any such examination revealed that the rights of the Palestinian people were being systematically breached by the occupying Power.
75. Israel’s violations of the rights of Palestinians in the occupied Palestinian territory included the denial of their right to self-determination; killing, injuring and maiming civilians with the use of excessive and indiscriminate force; extrajudicial killings; acts of terror; arbitrary detention and imprisonment of thousands of civilians, including children and women; physical and mental ill-treatment, degradation and torture of prisoners and detainees; the denial of due process of law, the construction and expansion of colonial settlements and bypass roads; the construction of the Wall in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem; and the confiscation and exploitation of natural resources.
76. Israelis carried out collective punishment of the entire civilian population, destroyed livelihoods and obstructed access to medical care, education, food and humanitarian assistance as well as to places of worship, including in Jerusalem and Bethlehem. They imposed arbitrary restrictions on residence in Jerusalem in an attempt to further the city’s Judaization. Israel, the occupying Power, would continue to trample on the law with impunity if it were not held accountable for those violations and crimes. Human rights must not be made conditional on conflict resolution. They must be protected under all circumstances.
77. Achieving peace required respect for international law. In accordance with international law, Palestinian civilians under Israeli occupation constituted protected persons towards whom Israel had numerous obligations by virtue of its status as an occupying Power. Israel must cease all violations of the human rights of the Palestinian people. The international community had clear responsibilities in that respect, particularly the High Contracting Parties to the Geneva Conventions. It must make every effort to end the grave human rights violations and promote the human rights of the Palestinian people, including the right to self-determination.
The meeting rose at 1 p.m.
This record is subject to correction. Corrections should be sent under the signature of a member of the delegation concerned within one week of the date of publication to the Chief of the Official Records Editing Section, room DC2-750, 2 United Nations Plaza, and incorporated in a copy of the record.
Corrections will be issued after the end of the session, in a separate corrigendum for each Committee.