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UNITED
NATIONS
E

        Economic and Social Council
PROVISIONAL
E/1994/SR.49
25 January 1995

ORIGINAL: ENGLISH

Substantive session of 1994

PROVISIONAL SUMMARY RECORD OF THE 49th MEETING

Held at Headquarters, New York,
on Friday, 29 July 1994, at 3 p.m.

President: Mr. BUTLER (Australia)
CONTENTS

REGIONAL COOPERATION IN THE ECONOMIC, SOCIAL AND RELATED FIELDS (continued)

PERMANENT SOVEREIGNTY OVER NATIONAL RESOURCES IN THE OCCUPIED PALESTINIAN AND OTHER ARAB TERRITORIES (continued)

COORDINATION QUESTIONS (continued)

PROGRAMME AND RELATED QUESTIONS IN THE ECONOMIC, SOCIAL AND RELATED FIELDS (continued)

QUESTION OF DECLARING 1998 INTERNATIONAL YEAR OF THE OCEAN (continued)

QUESTION OF DECLARING 1995 INTERNATIONAL YEAR TO OBSERVE THE ONE THOUSANDTH ANNIVERSARY OF THE MANAS EPIC (continued)

SUSPENSION OF THE SESSION


The meeting was called to order at 3.25 p.m.


REGIONAL COOPERATION IN THE ECONOMIC, SOCIAL AND RELATED FIELDS (continued) (E/1994/L.42)

Draft resolution E/1994/L.42

The PRESIDENT informed the Council that Austria, Belgium, Benin, Brazil, Estonia, Greece, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands and Poland had joined the sponsors of draft resolution E/1994/L.42 entitled "Middle East peace process".

Mr. COHEN (United States of America) said that Ghana, Jordan, Luxembourg, the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine had also become sponsors.

Mr. ELIASHIV (Observer for Israel) said that Israel welcomed and supported the draft resolution, following the adoption of General Assembly resolution 48/58. Indeed, Israel had supported the idea from its very inception. The draft resolution, of which his country was a sponsor, reflected the support of the international community for the ongoing peace process. It also reflected the historic developments in the Middle East, including the Declaration of Principles on Interim Self-Government Arrangements, signed by Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) in Washington, D.C., on 13 September 1993; the subsequent Agreement on the Gaza Strip and the Jericho area, signed by the Government of Israel and the PLO in Cairo on 4 May 1994; the Agreement between Israel and Jordan on the Common Agenda, signed in Washington, D.C., on 14 September 1993; and the Washington Declaration, signed by Israel and Jordan on 25 July 1994. Those developments had been made possible by the ongoing peace process, started at Madrid and were based on the principle of direct negotiations between the parties without preconditions. That process was creating an opportunity for an era of peace, security, cooperation and progress in the Middle East.

The draft resolution marked another step forward in adapting United Nations resolutions to the new reality in the Middle East. His delegation hoped that further steps would be taken in order to ensure that the resolutions of the Council, the General Assembly and other United Nations bodies reflected the new positive developments in the region. Peace and development were indivisible. Economic and social development could be achieved only through cooperation, not through confrontation.

Mr. SHREIM (Observer for Palestine) said that, while his delegation would welcome the adoption of the draft resolution, it believed that the Council was nee the appropriate forum in which to consider it. While his delegation welcomed the progress achieved in the negotiations between Israel and Jordan, it had strong reservations with regard to paragraph 3 (b) of the Washington Declaration concerning the status of Jerusalem. He stressed that a number of General Assembly and Security Council resolutions considered East Jerusalem a part of the Palestinian territories occupied in 1967.

Mr. RUNGE (Germany), speaking on behalf of the European Union, Austria, Finland and Sweden, expressed strong support for the Middle East peace process and recognized its fundamental political importance to the region. The States members of the European Union, Austria, Finland and Sweden would vote in favour of draft resolution E/1994/L.42. However, referring to General Assembly resolution 48/162 on the restructuring and revitalization of the United Nations in the economic, social and related fields, he said that an effort should be made to avoid duplication of debates in the Council and the General Assembly.

Mr. EL MOAKAF (Libyan Arab Jamahiriya), speaking in explanation of vote before the voting, stressed the purely political nature of the draft resolution. Action on such draft resolutions should be taken by the General Assembly, not the Economic and Social Council. Its submission to the Council was unprecedented. The Libyan Arab Jamahiriya had always advocated peace in the Middle East and the cessation of the conflicts which had claimed hundreds of thousands of Arab and Jewish lives. It could not, however, accept the fragile peace outlined in the Declaration of Principles or the Agreement on the Gaza Strip and the Jericho area, which constituted nothing but an Israeli scheme to take everything without giving anything in return. A comprehensive peace based on justice could be achieved only through the establishment of a democratic State of Palestine in a process similar to the one which had led in the establishment of the democratic State of South Africa. Under genuine peace, the weapons of mass destruction possessed by Israel would be placed under effective international control and Israel would be prevented from continuing to develop weapons of mass destruction and long-range missiles. For all of those reasons, his delegation would vote against draft resolution E/1994/L.42.

Mrs. BRENNEN (Bahamas) said that her delegation, which had not been present during the voting, wished to place on record that it would have voted in favour of draft resolution E/1994/L.42.

The PRESIDENT said that the Council had concluded its consideration of agenda item 7.

PERMANENT SOVEREIGNTY OVER NATURAL RESOURCES IN THE OCCUPIED PALESTINIAN AND OTHER ARAB TERRITORIES (continued) (E/1994/L.34)

Draft resolution E/1994/L.34

Mr. ELIASHIV (Observer for Israel) said that the Declaration of Principles on Interim Self-Government Arrangements, signed by Israel and the PLO on 13 September 1993, stipulated that the issue of settlements would be discussed in the context of the permanent status negotiations.

The adoption of any resolution on the question of Israeli settlements would prejudge the outcome of these negotiations. The ongoing bilateral negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians and between Israel and Syria were the appropriate forums for addressing the issue. It was the responsibility of the United Nations to support the Declaration of Principles, which was an important step towards peace and reconciliation. Accordingly, the question of Israeli settlements should not be dealt with in the Council. Like the new positive resolutions on the Middle East peace process, all United Nations resolutions should reflect the latest realities in the Middle East and the hopes of its peoples for a better future.

Mr. COHEN (United States of America), speaking in explanation of vote before the voting, noted that it was somewhat of a fashion at the United Nations to adopt resolutions on an "as-tradition-dictates" basis even when such "traditional" resolutions did not adequately reflect changing situations.

The parties in the Middle East had moved beyond the positions set forth in draft resolution E/1994/L.34 and the Economic and Social Council should do likewise.

His Government's views on resolutions concerning issues concurrently under direct negotiation between parties in the region were well known. Concrete achievements had resulted from those negotiations. The Council should support the negotiating process in order to allow the parties to resolve their differences directly. The draft resolution essentially echoed General Assembly resolution 48/212, which his delegation had voted against. It would also vote against draft resolution E/1994/L.34, for it opposed language which, in its view, prejudged the outcome of negotiations.

The breakthroughs achieved in the past few months, including the signing of the Washington Declaration by Israel and Jordan, had greatly changed traditional approaches to the Arab-Israeli conflict. An effort should be made to avoid focusing on issues or statements which divided and polarized. He noted that the text recognized the ongoing Middle East peace process and the signing of the first implementation agreement of the Declaration of Principles by the Government of Israel and the PLO. That development, followed by the historic signing of the Washington Declaration, confirmed his delegation's view that the one-sided and outmoded language of the draft resolution before the Council was divisive and did not contribute to the negotiations. In particular, his delegation wished to point out that under the Declaration of Principles, the question of Israeli settlements and the question of the final status of Jerusalem were to be addressed in the final status negotiations.

His delegation was committed to the goal of a comprehensive, just and lasting peace settlement in the Middle East, achieved through direct negotiations between the parties on the basis of Security Council resolutions 242 (1967) and 338 (1973). The actions of the parties in the region demonstrated that the difficult task of peacemaking was well under way. The Council should give its fullest support to that process without attempting to prejudge the outcome. For all of those reasons, his delegation would vote against the draft resolution and called upon other delegations to do likewise.

At the request of the representative of the United States of America, a recorded vote was taken on draft resolution E/1994/L.34.

Draft resolution E/1994/L.34 was adopted by 46 votes to 1, with 3 abstentions.

Mr. EL MOAKAF (Libyan Arab Jamahiriya), speaking in explanation of vote, said that, while his delegation had voted in favour of the draft resolution, it did not endorse the paragraph which welcomed the signing of the first implementation agreement of the Declaration of Principles. It did not believe that it would culminate in the exercise of the right to self-determination by the Palestinian people. His delegation was in favour of a comprehensive peace based on justice, under which Israel was compelled to implement General Assembly and Security Council resolutions. That would uphold the credibility of the Security Council.

Mr. HUDYMA (Ukraine) said that his delegation had abstained, in the belief that the real solution lay in a comprehensive settlement of the Middle East question. The draft resolution did not fully take into account the current realities in the region or reflect the positive changes which had recently taken place and which represented a step towards such a comprehensive settlement. Ukraine stood ready to assist in achieving a prompt solution to the question of the Middle East, including the problem of Palestine, and would support any action taken with a view to achieving a firm and lasting peace in the region and the stable economic development of the Palestinian people.

Mr. NISHIMURA (Japan) said that, while his delegation had voted in favour of the draft resolution, if believed that political questions should not be taken up in the Economic and Social Council.

Mr. SHREIM (Observer for Palestine), while reaffirming his delegation's commitment to the Declaration of Principles, said that the United nations remained responsible for the question of Palestine until it was settled in all its aspects, including the question of settlements and refugees. Had United Nations resolutions condemning Israeli settlements as if legal and an obstacle to peace been respected and implemented, the situation might have been different. Indeed, the party which prejudged the outcome of the final status negotiations on the settlements was precisely the one which continued to expand those settlements despite its avowed commitment to the Declaration of Principles. It was not draft resolution E/1994/L.34 which prejudged the outcome, but rather the actual situation in the area.

The PRESIDENT said that the Council had concluded its consideration of agenda item 8.

/......


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, Office of Conference Services, room DC2-794, 2 United Nations Plaza.



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