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In the absence of the President, Miss Clarke (Barbados)took the Chair .
The meeting was called to order at 10.05 a.m.
Agenda items 44 and 10 ( continued)
Follow-up to the outcome of the Millennium Summit
Report of the Secretary-General (A/57/270 and A/57/270/Corr.1)
Report of the Secretary-General on the work of the Organization (A/57/1)
Mr. Aldouri (Iraq) ( spoke in Arabic ): ...
The tragedy that the Palestinian people are undergoing under Israeli aggression, which is destroying infrastructure and pursuing a policy of massacres, assassinations, displacement, siege, starvation and settlement-building, could not have been precipitated had it not been for United States political, military and financial support to Israel. Those activities must be classified as terrorist activities. They are in fact State terrorism, but they are passed off as acts of self-defence. Israel is now talking about the need to reform the Palestinian Authority and to hold elections in order to divert attention from the genuine core of the problem. That is the best example of the double-standard policy I spoke of earlier.
Israeli actions against defenceless Palestinians constitute a major violation of human rights, international law and the principles of the Charter. The United Nations must take a clear position on them in order to protect the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people to liberate its territory and to establish a free and independent State, with Al-Quds Al-Sharif as its capital. At a time when dozens of Security Council and General Assembly resolutions call for the rejection of all geographic and demographic changes being carried out in Jerusalem, the United States Government, which is accusing Iraq of non-compliance with Security Council resolutions, has itself signed a protocol for an agreement recognizing that Jerusalem should be the “eternal capital” of Israel.
Where, then, does the United States stand in terms of international law? What has become of Security Council and General Assembly resolutions, and where is respect for them? We feel the Palestinian people and the Palestinian Authority, and not the United States are the ones entitled to determine the capital of the Palestinian State. We encourage the United Nations, for the sake of international peace and security, to strive to avoid any further deterioration of the situation in our region, given the critical state of tension, of which we are so well aware.
Mr. Sharma (Nepal): ...
In the area of peace and security, the war on terrorism has freed Afghanistan from the clutches of the Taliban brutality and obscurantism and from the shroud of Al Qaeda terror. East Timor has emerged from the pall of violence and joined the family of free nations. Sierra Leone and Angola have breathed a sigh of relief after violence abated, and have begun to make their way back to normalcy. These are remarkably encouraging developments.
However, the Middle East continues to hang by the cusp, ready to plunge into a vortex of deeper violence and wider war. Though the siege against Mr. Arafat has ended, the Israeli repression and restrictions on the Palestinian people continue. War drums are beating ever closer in the Gulf, making the whole world nervous about its possible consequences. We call on all sides to exercise restraint and find peaceful resolutions to this crisis.
The Acting President: I now give the floor to the representative of Yemen.
Mr. Mubarez (Yemen) (spoke in Arabic): ...
However, the importance attached by the Security Council to certain issues and the selectivity that has been noted in the application of Security Council resolutions has given rise to certain questions. In particular, the Council has not rigorously applied resolutions relating to the Middle East. This is quite obvious. It has had an effect on the credibility of the Organization and has limited its effectiveness.
The Acting President ( spoke in French): I call on the representative of Angola.
Mr. Gaspar Martins (Angola): ...
In my own country, the collective efforts of the Angolan people and the international community brought about peace. Regrettably, there are also initiatives marked by less progress. Successful missions and initiatives can be traced back to one fundamental ingredient, and that is the commitment of Member States to assist the Organization in the implementation of collectively agreed courses of action. This premise holds true for the failure of the Organization in Iraq, the Middle East, Western Sahara and other places.
The meeting rose at 12.30 p.m.
This record contains the text of speeches delivered in English and of the interpretation of speeches delivered in the other languages. Corrections should be submitted to the original languages only. They should be incorporated in a copy of the record and sent under the signature of a member of the delegation concerned to the Chief of the Verbatim Reporting Service, room C-154A. Corrections will be issued after the end of the session in a consolidated corrigendum.