About the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People
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Since the adoption by the Security Council of resolution 592 (1986), and my letter of 16 December 1986 on this matter (A/41/970-S/18525), demonstrations by Palestinians against the Israeli military occupation have intensified in the West Bank and Gaza. The Israeli authorities have again resorted to a variety of measures to quell the demonstrations, including the use of armed force, the detention of Palestinian leaders for six-month periods, arrests, the closing down of several universities, and expulsions.
Most recently, three youth leaders were ordered deported. They were: Mr. Marwan Barghouti, Chairman of the Student Council at Bir Zeit University, Mr. Khalil Ashour, Chairman of the Student Council at An-Najah University (both in the West Bank) and Mr. Ahmed Abdulfatah Nasser, President of the Arab Youth Federation at Khan Yunis in Gaza. All were accused of encouraging activities in opposition to the Israeli military occupation. Mr. Barghouti and Mr. Ashour, in particular, withdrew their appeal against the deportation before the Military Objections Committee, expressing lack of confidence in the Israeli legal system, and were forced to cross the border to Jordan on 14 May 1987.
In the light of these grave developments in the occupied Palestinian territories, now in their twentieth year of occupation, I wish, on behalf of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, to recall that the Security Council has repeatedly affirmed, most recently in resolution 592 (1986), that the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949, is applicable to the Palestinian and other Arab territories occupied by Israel since 1967 and has called upon Israel to abide immediately and scrupulously by that Convention.
The Committee wishes to reiterate its deep concern at the measures taken by the Israeli authorities, which only heighten tensions in the region and present a serious obstacle to international action for a just and lasting solution to the question of Palestine, which is at the core of the Middle East conflict.
The Committee remains convinced that positive consideration and action by the Security Council on its recommendations and on the proposed International Peace Conference on the Middle East would advance prospects for a lust and lasting peace in the region. The Committee therefore renews its appeal to you to continue to do all in your power to promote this objective.
I should be grateful if you would have this letter circulated as a document of the General Assembly, under item 38 of the preliminary list, and of the Security Council.