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UNITED
NATIONS
E

        Economic and Social Council
PROVISIONAL
E/2005/SR.40
5 December 2005

Original: English

Substantive session of 2005
Operational activities segment

Provisional summary record of the 40th meeting
Held at Headquarters, New York, on Wednesday, 27 July 2005, at 3 p.m.

President: Mr. Akram .............................................................................. (Pakistan)



Contents

...

Economic and social repercussions of the Israeli occupation on the living conditions of the Palestinian people in the occupied Palestinian territory, including Jerusalem, and the Arab population in the occupied Syrian Golan ( continued)

...



The meeting was called to order at 3.30 p.m.

...

Economic and social repercussions of the Israeli occupation on the living conditions of the Palestinian people in the occupied Palestinian territory, including Jerusalem, and the Arab population in the Syrian Golan (continued)


Draft resolution E/2005/L.24/Rev.1: “Economic and social repercussions of the Israeli occupation on the living conditions of the Palestinian people in the occupied Palestinian territory, including Jerusalem, and the Arab population in the occupied Syrian Golan”

53. Mr. Koubaa (Tunisia) introduced the draft resolution and said that Cuba, Indonesia, Iraq and Namibia had become sponsors.

54. Mr. Ceinos-Cox (United States of America), speaking in explanation of the vote before the vote, said that the United States Middle East policy was focused on achieving President Bush’s vision of two States, Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace and security. The requirements for achieving that goal were an effective Palestinian security performance; renewal of a serious political process aimed at a two-State solution that brought hope to Palestinians and Israelis alike; and response to humanitarian needs by building strong, responsible Palestinian authority institutions in preparation for statehood.

55. One-sided resolutions like the draft resolution under consideration undermined the credibility of the work of the Council and did nothing to improve the situation in the region and the people the draft resolution purported to want to help. His Government opposed actions that diverted attention from practical steps by the Quartet and the partners in the international and regional communities to move the parties towards realization of that two-state vision. The focus should be on working together effectively on practical steps to address Palestinian needs and get the two parties back on the path to peace.

56. A recorded vote was taken on draft resolution E/2005/L.24/Rev.1:

In favour :

Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Belgium, Belize, Benin, Brazil, Canada, China, Colombia, Congo, Cuba, Denmark, Ecuador, France, Germany, Guinea, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Kenya, Lithuania, Malaysia, Mauritius, Mexico, Mozambique, Namibia, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Pakistan, Panama, Poland, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, South Africa, Spain, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, United Republic of Tanzania.

Against:

Australia, United States of America.

Abstaining:

Costa Rica.

57. Draft resolution E/2005/L.24/Rev.1 was adopted by 49 votes to 2, with 1 abstention.

58. Mr. Rock (Canada) said that while Canada remained concerned by the security, economic, social and humanitarian situation in the West Bank and Gaza, it was encouraged by recent positive developments and current opportunities to make progress towards a fair, lasting and negotiated peace in the region. It welcomed, in particular, renewed possibilities to promote Palestinian economic regeneration arising from Israel’s decision to withdraw from the Gaza Strip and parts of the northern West Bank, and hoped to see a full and complete withdrawal from Gaza and parts of the West Bank. It urged Israel and the Palestinian Authority to engage fully and constructively to ensure an orderly transition which would accelerate progress on the road map. Canada also welcomed the resolve of the Palestinian Authority to prevent terrorist attacks, enforce the rule of law, and conduct security sector reform. A secure environment would contribute significantly to international efforts to strengthen the Palestinian economy, including the mission of the qua rtet Special Envoy for Gaza Disengagement. Canada called on all parties to adhere to their obligations under international humanitarian and human rights law.

59. His delegation would have liked the draft resolution to address recent developments in the region in a way more helpful to constructive dialogue between the parties. His Government continued to oppose the construction of sections of the barrier in occupied territory, in contravention of international law. Consistent with that approach and with its support for Israel’s right to ensure its own security, including restricting access to its territory, it preferred the use of previously agreed language on this issue, based on ES-10/13 of 27 October 2003.

60. Mr. Guardia (Panama) said that his delegation had voted in favour of the draft resolution in recognition of the struggle of the Palestinian people to form a sovereign State and of the difficulties caused by the occupation of their territory. It hoped that the situation would be resolved by peaceful means. However, he expressed concern about the duplication of resolutions on that subject, which did not help to achieve lasting peace in the region; the United Nations should focus its efforts on a peaceful settlement of the already prolonged conflict between Israel and Palestine.

61. Mr. Chulkov (Russian Federation) said that his delegation had voted in favour of the draft resolution. His Government continued to believe that consideration of the issue should be guided by General Assembly resolutions, which affirmed the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people and the population of the occupied Syrian Golan to their natural resources, including land and water, and called upon Israel not to exploit, destroy, deplete or in any way threaten the natural resources of the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including Jerusalem and the occupied Syrian Golan. It was important to resolve urgent problems, including improving the humanitarian situation in the Palestinian territories, preventing acts of terrorism and reaching mutual consensus on security measures. Such steps would create favourable conditions for a coordinated and peaceful withdrawal of the Israeli army and the evacuation of settlers from the Gaza sector and the northern part of the West Bank of the Jordan river, and would allow for the fulfilment of the road map. The Council’s consideration of the agenda item was unfortunately becoming increasingly politicized, which distracted the Council from fulfilling its main functions of coordinating United Nations activities in the social and economic spheres.

62. Ms. Davis (United Kingdom), speaking on behalf of the European Union, the acceding countries Bulgaria and Romania, the candidate countries Turkey and Croatia, the countries of the Stabilisation and Association Process and potential candidates Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Serbia and Montenegro, the EFTA countries Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, members of the European Economic Areas and Ukraine, stressed that the Government of Israel must take urgent action to alleviate the humanitarian plight of the Palestinian people, inter alia, by facilitating the movement of Palestinian people and goods and access by international humanitarian organizations. The European Union was concerned about the separation barrier being built by Israel, especially in and around East Jerusalem, and called upon Israel to stop and reverse its settlement activities, which made a two-State solution impossible.

63. The European Union condemned the recent terrorist attacks on Israel and the violence committed by Palestinian militants against Palestinian security personnel. While recognizing Israel’s right to protect its citizens, the European Union had consistently opposed extrajudicial killings, which were contrary to international law. It supported the Israeli withdrawal from Gaza and parts of the northern West Bank and welcomed the work of the Quartet Special Envoy for Disengagement.

64. In 2005, as in previous years, the European Community would provide €250 milli on in financial assistance to the Palestinians. In addition, it was making significant contributions in anticipation of the forthcoming Israeli withdrawal. The European Union reaffirmed its view that the way to achieve a permanent peace was a viable two-State solution achieved through the full implementation by both parties of their commitments under the road map. That solution could be achieved only through negotiations between the parties, with the support of the international community.

65. Mr. Sunaga (Japan) said that his delegation had voted in favour of the draft resolution in the hope that it would help to smooth the way for a resumption of work under the road map. While Japan agreed that the international community should support the efforts of the two sides to achieve peace, he reiterated his country’s view that it was not appropriate for the Council to deliberate such issues.

66. Mr. Sermoneta (Observer for Israel) said that his delegation regretted the adoption of the draft resolution, which was one-sided, out of context and would not help either to achieve a lasting solution in the region or to enhance the credibility of United Nations efforts. The resolution called for a cessation of terror without demanding that the Palestinian Authority assume its responsibilities and take action to combat it, and it made no mention of the right to life of Israeli citizens. Moreover, Israel believed that the international instruments cited in the eleventh preambular paragraph, which applied to peacetime situations, did not apply to the West Bank and Gaza, where a situation of armed conflict prevailed.

67. Mr. Hijazi (Observer for Palestine) expressed appreciation for the adoption of the draft resolution, which reflected the fact that for 48 years the Palestinian people had been deprived of rights that other peoples took for granted, and the Israeli position of alienating itself consistently from the international community. He expressed the hope that the resolution would help bring the Palestinian people closer to the enjoyment of their economic and social rights and to a brighter future, with careful monitoring by the international community.

68. Mr. Sabbagh (Observer for the Syrian Arab Republic) said that the adoption of the draft resolution reflected the international community’s support for a just and lasting peace and its awareness of the threat to such peace represented by Israel’s defiance of international law and human rights instruments and of its actions against Arab citizens in the Occupied Syrian Golan and Jerusalem.

69. The President suggested that the Council should take note of the note by the Secretary-General contained in document A/60/65-E/2005/13.

70. It was so decided.

...

The meeting rose at 6.05 p.m.


Corrections to this record should be submitted in one of the working languages. They should be set forth in a memorandum and also incorporated in a copy of the record. They should be sent within one week of the date of this document to the Chief, Official Records Editing Section, room DC2-750, 2 United Nations Plaza.



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