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UNITED
NATIONS
A

        General Assembly
Distr.
GENERAL
A/C.2/51/SR.21
9 September 1997

ENGLISH
ORIGINAL: FRENCH

FIFTY-FIRST SESSION
Official Records


SECOND COMMITTEE
21st meeting
held on
Wednesday, 30 October 1996
at 10 a.m.
New York

SUMMARY RECORD OF THE 21st MEETING

Chairman: Mr. HAMBURGER (Netherlands)

CONTENTS

AGENDA ITEM 96: SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT AND INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC COOPERATION (continued)

(e) HUMAN SETTLEMENTS


The meeting was called to order at 10.10 a.m.


AGENDA ITEM 96: SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT AND INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC COOPERATION (continued) (A/51/59, A/51/73, A/51/87, A/51/120, A/51/127, A/51/138, A/51/208-S/1996/543, A/51/210, A/51/295, A/51/314, A/51/357, A/51/375, A/51/462-S/1996/831, A/51/529)

(e) HUMAN SETTLEMENTS (A/CONF.165/14, A/51/384)

/...

48. Mr. HAMDAN (Lebanon) said that the issue of human settlements was of concern to the entire international community and that it was incumbent on all States to do what was necessary to preserve the global environment.

49. At Habitat II, his delegation had raised the problems caused by 17 years of warfare in Lebanon and those that persisted in the south of the country and in the western Bekaa, the areas occupied by Israel since 1978.

50. In addition to the exodus from the countryside and chaotic urbanization, problems common to all developing countries, Lebanon encountered other difficulties: the destruction of housing and infrastructure; the collapse of economic and cultural institutions; the displacement of more than 100,000 families; an unbalanced geographical distribution of the population; a rise in unemployment; the devastation of arable land; stagnation in industry, tourism and commerce; frequent human rights violations; a breakdown of social and moral values; growing drug use; and increasing juvenile crime.

51. In order to remedy that situation, the Lebanese Government had made the reconstruction of the country its major goal. In order to accomplish that, it had elaborated ambitious programmes costing some 27 billion dollars to be financed by Lebanon, friendly countries, non-governmental organizations and international organizations, including UNDP, UNESCO and the Bretton Woods institutions. Two of those programmes, which had been presented at the Istanbul Conference, concerned the restoration of the central commercial district of Beirut and the reconstruction of housing and villages with a view to the return of hundreds of thousands of displaced persons. In that connection, the Economic and Social Council, in its resolution 1996/32, had appealed to all Member States and all organizations of the United Nations system to intensify their efforts with a view to considering an increase in all forms of support for the reconstruction and development of Lebanon.

52. Lebanon was also enduring Israel's occupation of the western Bekaa and the southern part of the country. The occupation, which was accompanied by acts of terrorism, abduction and expropriation, had made it impossible to implement the principles adopted in Istanbul. Given that the problem would finally be resolved only with the complete withdrawal of Israeli forces in accordance with Security Council resolution 425 (1978), Lebanon urged the international community to bring pressure to bear on Israel to comply with that resolution.

53. Mr. N'DOW (Secretary-General of Habitat) said that Lebanon had offered participants in Habitat II the particularly edifying example of a country that had been devastated by war and had been able to launch a successful reconstruction project of formidable scope.

The meeting rose at 11.50 a.m.

This record is subject to correction. Corrections should be sent under the signature of a member of the delegation concerned within one week of the date of the publication to the Chief of the Official Records Editing Section, room DC2-794, 2 United Nations Plaza, and incorporated in a copy of the record.

Corrections will be issued after the end of the session, in a separate corrigendum for each Committee.


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