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About the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People

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Source: Division for Palestinian Rights (DPR)
Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People (CEIRPP)
29 February 1996

January/February 1996


Volume XIX, Bulletin No. 1




Contents

Page
I.
Action taken by the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People
1
II.
Statements by the President of the Security Council and the Secretary-General on the
Palestinian elections held on 20 January 1996
8
III.
Assistance to the Palestinian people
9
IV.
Statements condemning acts of violence in Jerusalem and Ashkelon on 25 February 1996
12
V.
Non-governmental organizations: activities and information
13
This bulletin, and back issues,
can be found in the Lotus Notes-based
United Nations Information System
on the Question of Palestine (UNISPAL) at:
212-963-7197 (server: DPA4) as well as on the Internet.


I. ACTION TAKEN BY THE COMMITTEE ON THE EXERCISE OF THE
INALIENABLE RIGHTS OF THE PALESTINIAN PEOPLE

On 26 February 1996, the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People opened its first meeting of the 1996 session, with statements made by the Secretary-General, Ambassador Kéba Birane Cissé of Senegal, the Committee’s outgoing Chairman, and the Permanent Observer of Palestine to the United Nations. The Committee decided to maintain the present composition of its Bureau until the election of the Bureau to be held at a later date. Expressions of gratitude to the Chairman and of assurance that he would continue to support the cause of Palestinian rights were offered by the representatives of Afghanistan, Egypt, Guyana, Malta, Pakistan and Ukraine.

The Secretary-General’s statement, as contained in press release SG/SM/5897, and the statement made by Ambassador Cissé, translated from French, are reproduced below.

"Statement by the Secretary-General at the opening
of 1996 session of the Committee on the Exercise
of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People


Farewell speech by H.E. Mr. Kéba Birane Cissé,
Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the
Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, on
the occasion of his departure from New York


Based on press release GA/PAL/717, Nasser Al-Kidwa, Permanent Observer of Palestine to the United Nations, said that the United Nations would have a continuing responsibility regarding the situation in Palestine until it was finally resolved in all its aspects. International law was the only weapon that Palestinians possessed in negotiating a final resolution of that situation. The international community, represented by the United Nations, should maintain its principled position on Palestine while supporting the peace process.

The Middle East region had witnessed many new developments, notably the continuing movement of Israelis to the occupied territories and the Palestinian elections. A high percentage of voters had taken part in those transparent elections, which had reinforced the peace process.

All current political developments would be critical to the future. Bearing that in mind, the parties should hold true to their commitments. Safe passage between the Gaza Strip and the West Bank had still not been established. Also, persons displaced since 1967 had not been allowed to return to their homes. Attempts to close the occupied territories and isolate them from the outside world were continuing. The parties should be faithful to their agreements.

Continuing negotiations on a final solution, consistent with international law, should take place within the time-frame already agreed upon. A faster pace should be established for the peace process itself. The Israeli side should facilitate economic developments, and the international community should continue its support for the Palestinian Authority.

The suicide attempt performed yesterday had been condemned by the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) at all levels. The PLO would continue to condemn all acts of violence as a matter of principle. Given the continuing peace process and its tangible achievements, there could be no justification whatever for those acts. The PLO urged a cessation of all acts of violence, including political assassination.

While acknowledging the financial crisis of the United Nations, he said that the Committee should be maintained at a level consistent with fulfilling its mandate in the present critical phase of its work. The PLO regretted remarks regarding the work of the Committee recently made by David Birenbaum, United States representative to the Open-Ended Working Group on the Strengthening of the United Nations. His comments had been hostile to the interests of the Palestinian people. The United Nations needed to coordinate its work concerning Palestine, bearing in mind the new reality on the ground. Positive change was a two-way street. While rejecting the views of Ambassador Birenbaum, the PLO hoped to see a more positive view towards the Committee on the part of the United States.

On 22 January 1996, the Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People wrote a letter to Yasser Arafat congratulating him on his election to the presidency of the Executive Authority of the Palestinian Council, reproduced below.

Consultations with non-governmental organizations
1 and 2 February 1996

A meeting of consultations of representatives of NGO coordinating committees and the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People of the United Nations was held on 1 and 2 February 1996 at United Nations Headquarters in New York. The meeting discussed priorities of the future cooperation between the Committee and the NGOs and made suggestions with regard to the programme of NGO events for 1996, held under the auspices of the Palestinian Rights' Committee. The North American NGO Symposium on the Question of Palestine is scheduled for 24-26 June at United Nations Headquarters, New York. Twenty-one NGO participants representing the International Coordinating Committee for NGOs on the Question of Palestine, the North American Coordinating Committee for NGOs on the Question of Palestine and the European Coordinating Committee for NGOs on the Question of Palestine attended these consultations.

At the opening session of this meeting, the following statement was made by the Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People.



II. STATEMENTS BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE SECURITY COUNCIL
AND THE SECRETARY-GENERAL ON THE PALESTINIAN
ELECTIONS HELD ON 20 JANUARY 1996

On 22 January 1996, the President of the Security Council and the Secretary-General made statements concerning the holding of the historic Palestinian elections for the Presidency of the Executive Authority of the Palestinian Council and the election of the Council's 88 members, contained respectively in document S/PRST/1996/3 and press release SG/SM/5879:

"Statement by the President of the Security Council


"Secretary-General congratulates PLO Chairman
Yasser Arafat on his election to Presidency
of Executive Authority of Palestinian Council



III. ASSISTANCE TO THE PALESTINIAN PEOPLE

On 9 January 1996, representatives of the donor community, Israel and the Palestinian Authority gathered in Paris at the ministerial level to "re-energize" the international assistance effort for the Palestinian people and to provide additional support to the process of peace and reconciliation under way in the region. On 29 January 1996, the Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) reported on the Programme of Assistance to the Palestinian People (PAPP) for 1995 (DP/1996/15). Moreover, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) publication Survey of 22 January 1996 contained a front-page article on IMF technical assistance to the Palestinian Authority. The final communiqué of the Paris Conference, extracts from the UNDP report and extracts from the IMF publication are reproduced below.

"Ministerial Conference on Economic Assistance to the Palestinian People

"Final communiqué

"Executive Board of the United Nations
Development Programme and of the
United Nations Population Fund

"Second regular session 1996
25-29 March 1996, New York
Item 12 of the provisional agenda

"Programme of assistance to the
Palestinian people

"Report of the Administrator

"Role of the IMF



IV. STATEMENTS CONDEMNING ACTS OF VIOLENCE IN JERUSALEM
AND ASHKELON ON 25 FEBRUARY 1996


The President of the Security Council, the Secretary-General and the Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) issued statements, contained respectively in press releases SC/6180, SG/SM/5896 and OPI/NYO/96-2Q, condemning the acts of violence in Jerusalem and Ashkelon on 25 February 1996 aimed at derailing the ongoing peace process. The statements are reproduced below.

"President of Security Council makes statement
to press on members' behalf concerning terrorist
attacks in Jerusalem and Ashkelon

"Secretary-General condemns brutal acts of terrorism in Israel

"UNESCO Director-General condemns terrorist bombings in Israel




V. NON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS:
ACTIVITIES AND INFORMATION


1. News from Within, is a newsletter published by the Alternative Information Center. Volume XII, No. 1 of January 1966 has articles on Palestine after Oslo II, which includes preparing the final map of Palestine; the Mirror of Oslo II; impact of settlements; and geopolitical effects of encirclement. It also has an article on the Palestinian participation in the Barcelona conference on liberation of trade, in which it is stated that this issue was not a Palestinian priority. Finally, it has an article on the upper and lower Gaza and how the West Bank redeployment strengthens the settlements.

2. Washington Report on the Middle East Affairs, issued by the American Educational Trust, P. O. Box 53062, Washington, D.C., 20009. Its issue No. 7 for February/March 1996 include articles on Israel withdraws troops but the occupation has not ended; Palestinians clear the election hurdle with room to spare; fate of Palestinian prisoners in question; response to Hanan Ashrawi; and the view that the assassination of Yahya Ayyash was untimely and unwise.


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