SUMMARY RECORD OF A MEETING BETWEEN
THE GENERAL COMMITTEE AND THE
DELEGATION OF ISRAEL
held in Lausanne on Monday,
12 September 1949, at 12:30 p.m.
Mixed Working Group on Arab Orange Groves
The CHAIRMAN invited the Israeli delegation to present its Government’s reply to the, General Committee’s proposal concerning a mixed working group for the Arab orange groves.
Mr. SASSON regretted to inform the Committee that his Government could not endorse the proposal and continued to maintain its position that the Custodian of enemy property was the only competent authority to deal with the question and was already doing all that could be done to preserve the groves.
The CHAIRMAN expressed the Committee’s regret at the position taken by the Israeli Government, and took note, on behalf of the Committee, of its refusal to endorse the proposal.
Arrangement for the cultivation of Arab lands in Israeli controlled territory
The CHAIRMAN drew attention to a suggestion made to the General Committee by the Technical Committee that an arrangement should be made to permit cultivation of their lands by certain Arabs living near the Armistice lines whose lands lay within Israeli controlled territory. On the basis of certain previous successful arrangements of the same type in other countries, the General Committee felt that the Israeli Government could establish an arrangement, under proper and necessary supervision, which would ease the situation of the Arabs in question. He therefore asked the Israeli delegation to refer the matter to its Government for consideration and action. He pointed out that the Committee had not advised the Arab delegations of the action it was taking in the matter; but he hoped that the Israeli Government would find it possible to cooperate on this question.
Mr. SASSON recognized that many precedents existed for such an arrangement, notably on the border between Syria and Palestine. He pointed out however, that the existing arrangements of that type had been agreed upon between Governments which were at peace. Moreover, the question had already been raised in the course of the armistice negotiations with the Hashemite Jordan Kingdom; it had been left to the Mixed Armistice Commission ‘to take a decision, and he did not know what conclusions had been reached. He agreed with the Chairman that the Principal Secretary might take up the matter upon his arrival in Jerusalem.
Future plans of the General Committee
The CHAIRMAN drew attention to the fact that the General Committee would suspend its meetings for the period of the Commission’s recess. If agreeable to the delegations, the Principal Secretary would be charged with carrying on, in Lausanne and later in Jerusalem, the work of the Committee as regards certain outstanding questions. In particular, he would be fully authorized to act for the General Committee in connection with the unblocking of Arab accounts, the repatriation of members of separated families, and the frontier arrangement just mentioned. The Chairman stressed the importance which the General Committee attached to the role of the Principal Secretary during the recess, and hoped that he would receive the assistance and co-operation of the Israeli Government.
The Chairman expressed his thanks for Mr. Sasson’s co-operation, as well, as that of his colleague Mr. Hirsch, in the work of the General Committee in Lausanne, and hoped that that cooperation would continue fruitfully upon resumption of the meetings in New York.
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Rencontre avec les délégations israéliennes pour discuter les orangeraies et la cultivation des terres arabes - Comité général de l'CCUNP 45e séance à Lausanne - Compte rendu analytique Français