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        Economic and Social Council
8 October 2010

Original: French

Substantive session of 2009
General segment

Provisional summary record of the 40th meeting
Held at the Palais des Nations, Geneva, on Tuesday, 28 July 2009, at 3 p.m.

President: Mr. Ali (Vice-President) ....................................................................... (Malaysia)



Social issues and human rights: advancement of women

Action on recommendations contained in the report of the Commission on the Status of Women on its fifty-third session (E/2009/27)


The President drew the Council’s attention to the four draft resolutions contained in Part C of Chapter I of the report of the Commission for adoption by the Council.


Draft resolution II (“Situation of and assistance to Palestinian women”)

The President recalled that draft resolution II, entitled “Situation of and assistance to Palestinian women”, had been adopted by the Commission on the Status of Women in a recorded vote. He invited delegations to present their comments on the draft.

Mr. Sammis (United States of America) said that the United States was deeply concerned about the current humanitarian situation in Gaza, including its impact on Palestinian women, and would continue to play an important role in humanitarian assistance to the Palestinian people. In addition, President Obama was committed to revitalizing the peace process in the region through the two-State solution. But, the adoption of resolutions as biased as the one under consideration ran counter to the diplomatic efforts being deployed. That was why the United States had voted against the draft resolution when it had been submitted in New York and had requested at the current session that it again be the subject of a vote. He wished to announce that his delegation would again vote against the text and invited other representatives to do the same.

At the request of the representative of the United States, a vote was taken by roll-call.

Cameroon, having been drawn by lot by the President, was called upon to vote first.

In favour:
Ms. Atout (Observer for Palestine) welcomed the constructive work that had accompanied the negotiation of the draft resolution and thanked all those who had supported the draft resolution. She stressed that there could be no prospect of long-term development in Palestine if the specific needs of Palestinian women were not met.

Mr. Fautua (New Zealand) said that the New Zealand Government was deeply concerned by the suffering of Palestinian women, which was exacerbated by the recent hostilities between Israel and Hamas. However, other women in the region, including Israeli women, were also suffering from the continuing conflict in the Middle East. The New Zealand delegation would have preferred a more balanced text that urged all parties to the conflict to renounce violence and respect human rights. In addition, it considered that it was not the role of the Commission on the Status of Women or the Economic and Social Council to consider issues of such political significance, which were rather within the purview of the General Assembly. For those reasons, his delegation had voted against the draft resolution. /...

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