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        General Assembly
12 October 2004

Official Records

General Assembly
Fifty-ninth session
27th plenary meeting
Tuesday, 12 October 2004, 3 p.m.
New York
President:Mr. Ping ......................................................................(Gabon)

The meeting was called to order at 3.05 p.m.


Agenda items 11 and 53 (continued )

Report of the Security Council (A/59/2)

Question of equitable representation on and increase in the membership of the Security Council and related matters


Mr. Rastam (Malaysia): ...


My delegation notes that the Council has increased the invocation of Chapter VII of the Charter. Since 1 August 2003, 28 of its resolutions contain this provision. We strongly believe that Chapter VII must be invoked responsibly after careful consideration of a given question. The Council must not apply double standards. For instance, why has the Council not invoked Chapter VII concerning the question of Palestine, despite the apparent threats to the peace, breaches of the peace, or acts of aggression committed by Israel? Chapter VII should not be invoked to advance narrow political objectives or to satisfy certain national interests. It is the collective interest of the wider membership in the maintenance of international peace and security that should be a major consideration.

Malaysia is concerned with recent trends in the Security Council to prescribe legislation to Member States through its resolutions that also invoke Chapter VII. Council resolutions 1540 (2004) and 1566 (2004) are cases in point. Malaysia registered the concerns of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) concerning resolution 1540 (2004) in the Council’s 4950th meeting, a public meeting held on 22 April 2004. We have insisted that the substance of resolutions such as those mentioned should serve as a basis for consideration by Member States when formulating, in due course, a comprehensive multilaterally negotiated legal instrument to address the specific question at hand. Malaysia would urge the Council to be more circumspect in its attitude towards prescribing legislative measures and invoking Chapter VII on behalf of the Member States of the United Nations.

Malaysia applauds the Council’s continued interest on the Palestinian question demonstrated in its monthly briefings and open debates. A total of 20 meetings and 33 informal consultations were convened on that question. That notwithstanding, only one resolution was adopted by the Council, namely, resolution 1544 (2004) of 19 May 2004, pertaining to the demolition by Israel of Palestinian homes in the Rafah refugee camp.

The Security Council must improve and maintain its credibility by enforcing its authority on the Palestinian question, in particular in respect of the commitment to the road map and to the two-State solution, the end of occupation of Palestinian and other Arab territories, the termination of Israel’s settler colonialism activities and the reversal of the construction of the separation wall. The Council must not allow its resolutions to be manipulated or allow itself to be prevented from doing anything meaningful. The Council must take resolute action concerning the construction of the Israeli expansionist separation wall, which was declared illegal in an advisory opinion issued by the International Court of Justice. Malaysia hopes that that will be done soon on the basis of the initiative presently before the Council.


Mr. Grey-Johnson (Gambia): My delegation commends the Security Council for a detailed and comprehensive report (A/59/2), which shows how fully engaged the Council has remained on all the key issues. We commend all its members for their hard work and dedication over the past year.

While it is true that the Middle East has accounted for a good part of the Council’s time, it is also very clear that much more needs to be done to effectively contain the situation in that region. Attention must be focused more sharply on the Israeli-Palestinian question, and more concrete measures must be devised to get all concerned to begin moving towards the ultimate objective of the road map: the creation of a Palestinian State existing side by side and peacefully with the State of Israel.

There is no gainsaying the fact that, in spite of the Council’s efforts, the situation deteriorated further during this reporting period. Settlements and refugee camps are being attacked on a regular basis, while suicide bombers cause havoc among innocent civilians. The whole world, meanwhile, watches helplessly as casualties rise from day to day. My delegation urges the Council to act urgently and more aggressively to bring the situation under control. For there is no doubt that the Israeli-Palestinian issue is what inspires and drives a number of other conflict situations elsewhere.

For a start, the Council may wish to consider measures aimed at fully enforcing the ruling of the International Court of Justice on the legal consequences of the construction of a wall in the occupied Palestinian territory. It is indeed a matter of regret that it is over the salient issues surrounding the Israeli-Palestinian question that the Council often cannot reach agreement, as evidenced by the number of draft resolutions on that question that it has not been able to adopt.


The meeting rose at 6.30 p.m.

This record contains the text of speeches delivered in English and of the interpretation of speeches delivered in the other languages. Corrections should be submitted to the original languages only. They should be incorporated in a copy of the record and sent under the signature of a member of the delegation concerned to the Chief of the Verbatim Reporting Service, room C-154A. Corrections will be issued after the end of the session in a consolidated corrigendum.

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