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        General Assembly
7 October 1980


Tuesday, 7 October 1980,
at 3.20 p.m.


Agenda item 9:
General debate (continued)
Speech by Mr. Ouko (Kenya)
Speech by Mr. Forde (Barbados)
Speech by Mr. Donaldson (Trinidad and Tobago)
Speech by Mr. Niehaus Quesada (Costa Rica)

President: Mr. Rüdiger von WECHMAR
(Federal Republic of Germany)



General debate (continued)

1. Mr. OUKO (Kenya): ...


10. It is saddening to note that no acceptable solution of the problem in the Middle East has been found.  For a long time now we have witnessed the miserable plight of the Palestinian people, dispossessed, dispersed and uprooted from their land. My delegation has made its views known on many occasions in the deliberations of this Organization on the question of the rights of the Palestinian people.  We still believe that no lasting peace can be achieved until the legitimate interests of the Palestinian people are taken into account and adequately safeguarded. We continue to call upon those directly concerned to be realistic and to address themselves to the real issues with a determination to resolve the problems. The basic elements involve the acceptance by all parties of the following: first, the right of all States in the region to live in peace and in recognized and therefore secure boundaries; secondly, the withdrawal of Israel from all Arab territories occupied since 1967, and also from East Jerusalem, as already decided upon by the United Nations; and thirdly, recognition of the right of the Palestinians to a national home, free, independent and sovereign.


11. As long as the parties to the dispute continue to refuse to recognize the essential elements of this problem, the Middle East will continue to pose a threat to international peace and security. Failure to settle this problem today will not make it easier to solve it in the future. If anything, it will
make it even more difficult.


39. Mr. FORDE (Barbados): ...


67. In Palestine, the clear solution is self-determination and a homeland for the people of the occupied territories.Israel too must have the right to exist as a sovereign State within defined and secure boundaries. Within Ethiopia and Lebanon, outside interference must cease. ...


78. Mr. DONALDSON (Trinidad and Tobago): ...


110. In the Middle East, the international community has witnessed the absence of any meaningful progress towards realizing the inalienable and imprescriptible right of the Palestinian people to self-determination and national independence.  Recent events demonstrate a degree of intransigence
and an unwillingness to recognize that fulfilment of the legitimate aspirations of the Palestinian Arab people is central to the achievement of a just and lasting peace in the Middle East.  My delegation reaffirms its firm support for the Security Council resolutions that have laid down an internationally acceptable framework for a just and honourable settlement and urges all parties to the conflict to resolve through peaceful means this issue which constitutes a threat to the peace and stability of the world and to accept the fact that the Palestine Liberation Organization must also have a role in any meaningful negotiations.


120. Mr. NIEHAUS QUESADA (Costa Rica) (interpretation from Spanish) ...


131. We have on repeated occasions presented our stand in defence of the rights of the Palestinian people to self-determination and sovereignty and to the establishment of their own sovereign State on the territory which was set aside for them by the United Nations. We recognize the right of the Palestinian people to participate in negotiations which affect their future through representatives chosen by them. At the same time, we recognize the right of the State of Israel to peaceful existence within stable and secure boundaries.

132. We believe that the quest for peace should encompass every kind of activity directed towards relieving tensions and that it is necessary to take initiatives which are not initiatives of belligerence.

133. In resolution 478 (1980) of 20 August, the Security Council called upon Member States with diplomatic missions at Jerusalem to withdraw them promptly from the Holy City in order not to give official character to a unilateral act lacking the approval of the General Assembly which could aggravate tensions in the area. My country, scrupulously complying with the recommendations of the Security Council and with a view to averting a worsening of the
situation, responded to the Council’s request.

134. While recognizing that the Palestinian question is the heart of the Middle East problem, we feel that the problem as a whole may perhaps be more easily dealt with if, agreements attesting to the good faith of the parties could be progressively reached. Brotherhood and peaceful coexistence are the only alternatives; there are no others. But someone must take the initiative in demonstrating that it is possible to achieve dialogue between Arabs and Jews.

135. Israel is the only State created by the General Assembly. It is probable, paradoxically, that the Palestinian State will be the second. The two States will be neighbours. Is it not possible then to begin conversations at once in order to prepare for that eventuality? Both States, with the human and material resources they possess, could be sources of progress and stability for the region.


The meeting rose at 6.10 p.m.

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