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20 November 1951

Original: English


Held in the Hôtel de Crillon, Paris,
on Tuesday, 20 November 1951, at 10 a.m.

1. Draft report to the Secretary-General

Chairman:Mr. PALMERUnited States of America
Members:Mr. MARCHALFrance
Mr. ARASTurkey
Alternates:Mr. BARCOUnited States of America
Mr. de NICOLAYFrance
Secretariat:Mr. de AZCARATEPrincipal Secretary


The CHAIRMAN opened the discussion on the draft report prepared, by the Secretariat.

Mr. ARAS (Turkey) said he had. no objection to that part of the report which gave a historical review of the Commission’s work since its last progress report.

With regard to the second part of the report, which dealt with the work of the Paris Conference, he thought it necessary to include the text of the Commission’s proposals in extenso and to explain how the development of the situation in the Middle East had led the Commission to draw up the proposals it had submitted to the parties and the commentaries with which it had accompanied led those proposals. There was another question which should be dealt with in the report, for even if it did not concern implementation of the General Assembly’s resolution defining the Commission’s task, it had nonetheless a very important bearing on United Nations action in the Middle East, namely the question of co-ordinating the work of United Nations bodies in that region. As the members of the Commission had explained to the Secretary-General on his visit to Jerusalem, that co-ordination was inadequate, and contact and liaison between the various United Nations organs was mainly informative in character.

The Commission’s report should wind up with a statement of its conclusions, which, he urged, should be presented realistically. Thus, it would be essential to stress that developments in Palestine and the work of the Paris Conference had brought out the inter-dependence of the question of Palestine and the general situation in the Middle East, and to request the General Assembly to pay due regard to the facts of that situation when it came to take a decision on future United Nations action on the Palestine question. Finally, the Commission should emphasize the importance of the time-factor in settling the various issues outstanding between the parties and should, in its own interest, stress the urgency of finding a solution to the refugee problem.

Mr. MARCHAL (France) thought agreement should be reached as quickly as possible on the conclusions and recommendations to be included in the Commission’s report. It was essential to give a prominent place to the results of the Paris Conference for he was convinced that any agreement that might subsequently be concluded between the parties would he based on the proposals submitted by the Commission at that conference.

He agreed with the Chairman and the Turkish representative that the General Assembly’s resolutions of 1950 and previous years no longer satisfied the needs of the present situation and that in view of subsequent developments literal application of these resolutions was no longer possible. The Commission should therefore state in its report that the proposals which it had submitted to the parties were an adaptation of the General Assembly’s resolutions to the actual conditions existing at the moment.

With regard to the future of the Commission itself and United Nations representation in Palestine, he was profoundly conscious of the need for reorganizing the system of representation and for co-ordinating the activities of United Nations organs in the Middle East more effectively, but he had difficulty in expressing his feelings on those points otherwise than very generally, since such considerations affected the other United. Nations organs in the Middle East. Members of the Commission could, however, explain the position to their national delegations to the General Assembly, who could in turn concert together upon a common attitude in the next debate on the Palestine question and upon whether more explicit recommendations were required at the present stage.

The CHAIRMAN agreed that those questions should be dealt with by the General Assembly delegations of the countries represented on the Commission, which should make purely general observations in its report. The United States delegation was convinced that United Nations representation in the Middle East must be modified if it was to be more effective. It was no less convinced, however, that the refugee problem demanded an immediate solution, for it could not be denied that there could be no stability in the Middle East until that problem had been satisfactorily settled. That was a point which it was the Commission’s duty to emphasize in its report to the Secretary-General.

Mr. ARAS (Turkey) asked whether, before completing its report, the Commission would not have a further exchange of views with the Relief and Works Agency, and perhaps also with the Chief of Staff of the Truce Supervision Organization.

The CHAIRMAN agreed that exchanges of views with the Relief and Works Agency would be necessary, but not until the Agency and the Commission had completed their reports. He also agreed that a conversation with General Riley would be desirable but wondered whether an informal exchange of views would not be preferable.

Mr. MARCHAL (France) also thought that exchanges of views with the Relief and Works Agency and with General Riley would assist the Commission’s work.

He emphasized the importance of the conclusions which the Commission would be submitting in its report and thought that a preliminary draft of the conclusions should be prepared without delay so as to serve as a basis of discussion. In view of the part played by the United States delegation in drawing up the Commission’s proposals at the Conference, he suggested that that delegation, with the co-operation of the Secretariat, should prepare a preliminary draft, which would be discussed and possibly modified or expanded in the light of the Commission’s conversations with the Relief and Works Agency and General Riley.

After an exchange of views, it was decided that the Secretariat should obtain suggestions from. the members of the Commission and prepare preliminary draft conclusions to serve as a basis of discussion.

It was also decided that the alternates should meet as a working party to complete the historical survey Part A of the report, describing the Commission’s activities since its last progress report.

The meeting rose at 12.15 p.

Document in PDF format

Projet de 10e rapport périodique des activités de Commission – Séance de CCNUP (Paris) – Compte rendu Français