Question of Palestine home
13 September 1983
Item 73 of the provisional agenda*
UNITED NATIONS RELIEF AND WORKS AGENCY FOR PALESTINE REFUGEES
IN THE NEAR EAST
REPORT OF THE UNITED NATIONS
CONCILIATION COMMISSION FOR PALESTINE
Note by the Secretary-General
The thirty-seventh report of the United Nations Conciliation Commission for Palestine, covering the period from 1 October 1982 to 30 September 1983, the text of which is attached to the present note, was transmitted by the Chairman of the Commission for communication to the States Members of the United Nations in accordance with paragraph 6 of General Assembly resolution 512 (VI) of 26 January 1952 and paragraph 4 of Assembly resolution 37/120 K of 16 December 1982.
Report of the United Nations
Conciliation Commission for Palestine
1. In paragraph 4 of resolution 37/120 K of 16 December 1982, the General Assembly noted with regret that the United Nations Conciliation Commission for Palestine had been unable to find a means of achieving progress in the implementation of paragraph 11 of Assembly resolution 194 (III) and requested the Commission to exert continued efforts towards the implementation of that paragraph and to report as appropriate, but no later than 1 October 1983. The present report is submitted pursuant to that request.
2. It should be recalled that in its twenty-fourth
eports, covering the periods from 24 December 1965 to 30 September 1966 and from 1 October 1966 to 30 September 1967, the Commission responded to similar requests which the General Assembly had made in its resolutions 2052 (XX) of 15 December 1965 and 2154 (XXI) of 17 November 1966. In those reports the Commission noted that examination of various ways in which it might be possible to intensify its efforts with any prospect of advancing matters towards the implementation of paragraph 11 of resolution 194 (III) had compelled the conclusion that all the ways envisaged presupposed substantial changes in the situation.
3. There is no need to emphasize that, as already stated in the preceding reports, the events which have occurred since then in the area concerned have further complicated an already very complex situation. As far as the Commission is concerned, the circumstances which unfortunately have limited its possibilities of action have remained up to now essentially unchanged.
4. Nevertheless, the Commission continues to hope that the situation and related circumstances in the region will improve towards the achievement of a comprehensive, just and lasting peace in the Middle East, thus enabling it to carry forward its work in accordance with its mandate as defined by General Assembly resolution 194 (III) of 11 December 1948.
5. Meanwhile, the Commission wishes to put on record other developments relevant to its work, which occurred during the period since the submission of its last report.
6. In November 1982 the Commission received a formal request from the Palestine Liberation Organization for permission to obtain a copy of the microfilm on property and land in Palestine. After giving careful consideration to the request, the Commission decided to grant to the Office of the Permanent Observer of the Palestine Liberation Organization to the United Nations access to the records of the Commission's custody for the purpose of obtaining the microfilms of land registers received from the Mandatory Government, and of the documents developed by the Commission and its staff in pursuance of its mandate. The Commission stipulated that it was making the requested materials available on the understanding that the Office of the Permanent Observer would continue to treat the valuation figures contained therein on a confidential basis; also that any expenses involved in obtaining the materials would be borne by the Office of the Permanent Observer.
7. At the time of preparation of the present report arrangements were still in progress to make copies of the authorized materials available to the Office of the Permanent Observer of the Palestine Liberation Organization to the United Nations.
8. Early in 1983 the Commission received a request from a representative of certain individual claimants of land and property in Palestine for an opportunity to gain access to the records in the Commission's custody or to appear before the Commission on behalf and for the interest of his clients. In view of that unprecedented request, as opposed to the permission previously given to the interested Governments,
the Commission decided to seek the opinion of the United Nations Legal Counsel on the matter. The Commission expects to come to a decision soon regarding that request in the light of the opinion expected from the Legal Counsel.
9. In July 1983 the Commission, in response to a request from the Government of Jordan, authorized an official of the Government to examine and make pertinent extracts form the Commission's records connected with the immovable properties of the Palestinian refugees. At the time of preparation of the present report the Government official was making arrangements to start his work.
Official Records of the General Assembly, Twenty-first
, agenda item 32, document A/6451.
Twenty-second Session, Annexes
, agenda item 34, document A/6846.
Twenty-ninth Session, Annexes
, agenda item 38, document A/9789, annex, para. 3.