About the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People
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2. The Temporary Chair invited the Committee to consider nominations for the office of Chair of the Committee.
3. Mr. Daou (Mali) nominated Mr. Diallo (Senegal) for the office of Chair of the Committee.
4. Mr. Ali (Malaysia) seconded the nomination.
5. Mr. Diallo (Senegal) was elected Chair by acclamation.
6. Mr. Diallo (Senegal) took the Chair.
7. The Chair, speaking in his capacity as the representative of Senegal, said that his country remained a staunch supporter of Palestinian rights. The path towards a solution to the situation of the Palestinian people was strewn with obstacles, but that should not stop the United Nations from pursuing it in order finally to stabilize that region of the world. Difficult compromises must be made to enable the peoples of Palestine and Israel to live together and to break the cycle of cruelty and hostility. The members of the Quartet — the European Union, the Russian Federation, the United Nations and the United States of America — must redouble their efforts to promote negotiations aimed at achieving a two-State solution and allowing the Palestinian people to exercise its rights fully.
The situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and developments in the political process
8. The Chair, noting that the Security Council had been given a briefing that morning on the situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and developments in the political process, said that if he heard no objection, he would take it that the Committee did not wish to take up the item at the current meeting.
9. It was so decided.
United Nations International Meeting on the Question of Palestine
10. The Chair said that the draft programme of the United Nations International Meeting on the Question of Palestine, to be held in Cairo in February 2011, had been circulated as Working Paper No. 8. He recalled that the purpose of the International Meeting, the suggested theme of which was “The urgency of addressing the plight of Palestinian political prisoners in Israeli prisons and detention facilities”, was to raise awareness of the situation of Palestinian political prisoners and to strengthen support for their speedy release and reintegration into Palestinian society. Among other things, the Meeting would look into the conditions of imprisonment of Palestinians in Israeli prisons and detention facilities, including the situation of women and minors. It would also discuss legal aspects of the arrests and detentions of Palestinians by the occupying Power, including Israeli legal claims, the use of administrative detentions and the legal responsibilities of the occupying Power. The Meeting would consider those issues in the context of the Israeli-Palestinian political process and would discuss ways of strengthening the role of the international community and non-governmental actors in promoting a solution. Invitations to the International Meeting would be sent to renowned experts on the issue, Member States and Observers, parliamentarians, representatives of the United Nations system and other intergovernmental organizations, civil society representatives and the media.
11. Ms. Gendi (Observer for Egypt) said that her Government welcomed the convening of the International Meeting, which would raise awareness about different aspects of the plight of the Palestinian people, including Palestinian prisoners in Israel, and would strengthen the international community’s efforts to identify and implement a solution. Her Government continued to support all the Committee’s activities aimed at mobilizing international support for the restoration of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people and achieving the goal of establishing an independent and viable State of Palestine with East Jerusalem as its capital.
12. Mr. Ali (Malaysia) commended the Committee’s efforts to focus attention on the plight not only of Palestinian prisoners but also of all inhabitants of Palestine, who lived under occupation and were therefore deprived of ordinary freedoms, and particularly those in Gaza, who were living under siege. He wished to know whether the Meeting would be a one-off event or the first of a series. He also asked whether a specific outcome was envisaged, such as recommendations that could be taken to the International Court of Justice.
13. Mr. Grieger (Secretary of the Committee) said that the Bureau’s intention in preparing the draft programme had been to draw attention to the plight of Palestinian prisoners, which had been almost forgotten internationally, and to ensure that the issue would be addressed as part of any lasting solution arrived at through the current Israeli-Palestinian political process. The Bureau would suggest further action at a later date.
14. Ms. Abdelhady-Nasser (Observer for Palestine) said that the Meeting was not intended to be a one-off event. It would raise awareness of the plight of Palestinian prisoners, of whom there were thousands, including women, children and elected officials. Those prisoners were being held in appalling conditions and it was believed that some of them were being subjected to torture. The plight of Palestinian prisoners should therefore be made one of the core final status issues. Enhanced international attention would help redress and ultimately resolve the issue.
15. The Chair said he took it that the Committee wished to approve the draft programme contained in Working Paper No. 8.
16. It was so decided.