II. Texts of statements made and messages received on the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People
In New York the programme for observance of the Day included a photo exhibit. This exhibit was personally opened by the Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People on Monday, 28 November, and was displayed for one week.
Throughout the week, the films "Under the Israeli Thumb", "The Key", "Palestinians Do Have Rights" and "The Palestinians of 1983" were screened at the Dag Hammarskjöld Auditorium.
The main event in the programme of observance of the Day in New York were two special meetings of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, held at the Trusteeship Council Chamber on Tuesday, 29 November. The Chairman of the Committee, the Secretary-General, the President of the General Assembly and the President of the Security Council were among those who addressed the meetings. The texts of messages and statements received from heads of State or Government, Foreign Ministers, the Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization and others are reproduced below.
As all present are aware, the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People was established by the General Assembly to assist in a Programme of Action to help the Palestinian People recover and exercise its inalienable rights.
The commemoration, on 29 November of every year, of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People accords with the wishes of the General Assembly expressed in its resolution 32/40 B, and rightly falls within our Programme of Action. It has two essential objectives: to draw the attention of the world to the condition of the Palestinian people and to mobilize world opinion on the need to take action to enable that people to recover and fully exercise its inalienable rights. This appeal has met with favourable, heartfelt response throughout the world, and the international community has expressed its sympathy for the cause of the Palestinian people. Proof of this is to be found in the numerous messages we received last year on the occasion of the commemoration of this Day of Solidarity from Heads of State or Government, Ministers for Foreign Affairs and various international organizations. This day, which is commemorated throughout the world, proves beyond any doubt the solidarity of world public opinion with the heroic Palestinian people, whose struggle is identified with all those forces waging the war against injustice and oppression. We hope next year to get a wider response to our appeal from the community of nations and peoples.
Above all, 1983 was the year of the International Conference on the Question of Palestine. This Conference, convened at the request of the United Nations General Assembly, centred on the encouragement of common thinking outside the traditional forum of the United Nations General Assembly in seeking the most appropriate ways and means of arriving at a just solution to the problem of Palestine.
Having participated in the Conference, and having knowledge of the final document that was adopted, members have been able rightly to assess the results of that important gathering, at which an international peace conference on the Middle past was proposed. That conference, held under United Nations auspices, in which all the parties to the conflict would participate on an equal footing, including the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), the United States and the Soviet Union, seek a just and lasting comprehensive solution to the conflict.
Certainly, a number of obstacles has yet to be overcome in the realization of this idea. In this respect, the Conference was but a beginning, and every effort must now be made to implement the relevant resolutions and decisions. The international community will thus remain faithful to its commitment to enabling the Palestinian people to exercise its rights in its own independent State. Our efforts will be all the more useful because the triumph of the Palestinian people has far from been achieved. The Security Council, on the recommendation of the General Assembly, has taken a stand on the rights of the Palestinian people, but some countries, while recognizing the legitimacy of the Palestinian people, still impose conditions which render exercise of their rights impossible.
We believe that the results attained in Geneva will give new impetus to all the good will we have shown. As an instrument for peace, the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People spares no effort in this direction and will, as in the past, be open to all views. Its sole concern is to bring peace to that afflicted nation.
I shall conclude by once again expressing, on behalf of the Committee and on my own behalf, appreciation to the Secretary-General for the assistance he and his collaborators have given us throughout the year now coming to an end. We also wish to pay a special tribute to Madame Lucille Mair, the Secretary--General of the Conference on the Question of Palestine, whose praiseworthy efforts greatly contributed to the success of that Conference. Our thanks go also to the Division for Palestinian Rights, so competently headed by Mr. Yogasundram, and to Mr. William Buffum, the Assistant Secretary-General, who has so effectively assisted us in all the tasks entrusted to him by the Committee.
We express our gratitude to Mr. Jorge Illueca, President of the General Assembly; Mr. Victor Gauci, President of the Security Council; the Chairmen of the regional groups of the United Nations special committees; the governmental observers; the observers of Committees; the Ambassadors or Permanent Representatives; and the liberation movements for their attendance here and their willingness to co-operate with us and with our Committee in the discharge of the mandate entrusted to it by the United Nations.
This is a symbolic act representing reaffirmation of the determination of the international community to fight for the achievement of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people. I believe I am speaking for the General Assembly when I express the hope that this celebration will draw the attention of world public opinion to the question of Palestine and thereby facilitate the attainment of the United Nations objectives. The United Nations has been dealing with the question of Palestine for many years. Although the General Assembly has approved various resolutions, drafted in good faith and designed to find a just solution to the problem, all efforts have been frustrated. Nevertheless it is our duty to mankind not to hesitate in our endeavours to solve this problem, which for many years has been a source of friction and contributed to the aggravation of tensions in the Middle East region, giving rise to conflicts that have threatened international peace and security and been actual breaches of the peace.
The achievement of a broad, just and lasting peace in the Middle East is a task so urgent that it will brook no delay. That objective can only be achieved when we have guaranteed the right of all States to live in peace, within secure and recognized boundaries, and when the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people are actually being exercised, including the right to return and the right to independence and the establishment of a free, independent, non-aligned State on Palestinian soil under the leadership of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), the genuine political representative of that people.
I trust that at this, its thirty-eighth session, the General Assembly will contribute to the achievement of a just and lasting peace. Consideration of the item, which began yesterday in the General Assembly, presents us with a new opportunity to deliberate on the matter and seek new peace initiatives. In the spirit of compromise and support for justice, it will always be possible to advance, and success is not beyond our reach. What is needed is an atmosphere of trust as well as realism. No political problem is insuperable if there is a political will to find a solution.
The International Conference on the Question of Palestine, which was held at Geneva this year, has given new impetus to our quest for a solution. Let us continue with our endeavours, with resolute determination, to settle this problem, which concerns a region whose very history imposes on us the obligation to persevere in our efforts after all, it is not only the cradle of civilization but also the birthplace of the three major monotheistic religions.
Regrettably, for many years that region has experienced grave conflicts that have repeatedly threatened peace and security. Let us reaffirm our decision to put an end to this cycle of violence and keep alive our hope that justice will be secured for all the inhabitants of the region, including the Palestinian people. Let us not forget the old adage I mentioned in my statement to the General Assembly: "When the roads of hope are closed, the paths of violence are opened."
This solemn meeting is proof that hope has not been lost. All that is needed is determination on the part of the international community to continue its efforts to end the violence that has struck the Middle East region and find a peaceful solution to a great political problem which profoundly affects all mankind.
Mr. Chairman, allow me to state that the efforts made by the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People under your wise guidance are praiseworthy and serve to keep hope alive. I hope that you and the Committee will successfully carry out the enormous task entrusted to you, in which you can rely on the support, respect and trust of the General Assembly, in accordance with the United Nations Charter.
Since 1947, when the United Nations was seized of this problem for the first time, the question of Palestine has required the constant attention of the international community, but despite all the efforts made no solution has yet been found. Today, as the result of successive wars, most Palestinians live under occupation or in exile, and many of them are living in conditions of extreme tension and insecurity. Even more painful than their physical trials is the suffering resulting from the loss and insecurity caused by their expatriation.
Over the years, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) has made untiring efforts to improve the situation of the Palestinians as much as possible by making available to them shelter, food, medical care and educational services. With limited resources and often in difficult and dangerous circumstances, the UNRWA staff has carried out its altruistic mission with admirable devotion and courage, but the relief and assistance operations, important and significant as they may be, cannot release the international community from its clear obligation to find a solution to the central problem of the legitimate rights and future of the Palestinian people.
The tragic events in Lebanon last year, which culminated in the Sabra and Shatila massacres, have brought home to us with poignant intensity the tragedy of the Palestinian people and the urgent need to seek a satisfactory solution to the Palestinian problem and to the other aspects of the Middle East conflict with which it is inextricably linked. The recent intensification of fighting in northern Lebanon, with the ensuing great loss of human life and suffering - on which the Security Council pronounced itself last Wednesday - the constant efforts made by the Security Council and the General Assembly and, most recently, by the International Conference on the Question of Palestine, have helped to outline the basic elements of a just and lasting settlement of the Middle Eastern conflict. These elements would include the withdrawal of Israeli forces from the occupied territories, the right of all States of the region to live in peace within secure and recognized borders, and a just settlement of the Palestinian problem, based on recognition of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, including its right to self-determination. In this regard, the question of Jerusalem remains of capital importance.
Despite the broad agreement which prevails in the international community, there has scarcely been any progress toward the necessary comprehensive settlement because the various peace initiatives launched so far have, unfortunately, run up against the opposition of one or another of the parties, whose positions have never been in harmony. Given this lack of progress towards a harmonious, just and lasting settlement, the problem has tended to become more complicated and aggravated and to take on new and dangerous dimensions. I earnestly hope that, faced with this risk of new sufferings and new dangers, all the Governments and authorities concerned, as well as those that are able to use their influence, will make a resolute effort to achieve an overall, just and lasting settlement, which alone can ensure coexistence and peace in the Middle East.
In this regard, I reaffirm my conviction that the United Nations, and more particularly the Security Council, has a constructive and crucial role to play in the process of establishing peace. I should also like to reiterate that I, for my part, am firmly determined to do everything within my power to ensure progress in this process and to create conditions conducive to negotiations. The fate of the victims on all sides and the cause of world peace demand this.
Mr. Chairman, we are all aware of the efforts being made by the Committee under your enlightened leadership to ensure a just solution to the Palestine question. Please permit me on this occasion to congratulate you personally, Sir, as also the members of the Committee, on your untiring work and to wish you success in your important mission.
The precarious situation in Lebanon and the recent developments in the area make it even more imperative that the parties directly concerned and, indeed, the international community as a whole, regard the request for a just and lasting peace in the Middle East as being closely connected to the settlement of the Palestinian problem. This difficult and arduous search has so far been unsuccessful, but the efforts continue. Among those efforts are those of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People under your able leadership, Sir, and it is to be commended for its untiring commitment to the attainment of Palestinian rights and the search for a peaceful solution.
The work of your Committee is a constant reminder to the Palestinian people that the international community is deeply concerned about their plight and the need to ensure the implementation of their legitimate rights. The recently concluded International Conference on the Question of Palestine has concentrated the attention of the United Nations on this question as never before, and it has made a tangible contribution to the search for a viable, peaceful solution.
Guided by its responsibilities under the Charter, the Security Council will, I am convinced, continue its efforts to seek a just and lasting peace in the Middle East for the benefit of all the parties concerned. Therefore, Mr. Chairman, I assure you and the Palestinian people that the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people remain in the forefront of the Council's attention.
Statement by Mr. Yasser Arafat, Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization and Commander-in-Chief of the Forces of the Palestinian Revolution
If this problem has not yet had the appropriate solution and the great sufferings and war have not yet ended, we must blame the Zionist aggressor and its powerful ally, the United States, as the United States defends and gives comfort to the brutal policy of aggression and territorial expansion being carried out, and gives its blessings.
We can be proud and confident and our resistance can remain unflagging precisely because every year we can see this international mobilization, which strengthens our determination and gives us comfort in our struggle. It strongly proclaims a loud no to injustice, aggression, oppression, racism and colonial war. By the same token, it says with the same strength yes to justice, rights, international law, legality, legitimacy and human rights, and a very strong yes to freedom, liberation, democracy, peace and justice.
On behalf of our people and its allies, and on my own behalf, I should like to state once again how grateful I am to all the leaders of friendly countries for their words of encouragement addressed to us on this great day.
Despite the specific nature of this occasion and the very important factors having an impact on our cause and the course of our struggle, as a fighter who knows very well the sufferings of our people to this very day and as one who is well acquainted with the death and destruction caused by the aggressive racist expansionist policies and the resulting war and accumulation of arms of mass destruction to impose a diktat upon reason and deliberation, I believe it to be necessary that in harmony with all the national liberation movements I include the voice of the PLO in support of, and in solidarity with, all those who are clamouring for an end to the mad arms race, which is continuing the dissemination and accumulation of nuclear arms.
I beseech the American people to assume their responsibility to save mankind and to spare it a war in which there would be no victor, the inevitable result of which would be the annihilation of our planet. Millions of young people still in the very flower of youth today turn to all those who occupy responsible positions and beseech them truly to assume their responsibilities and allow those young people to remain alive. They beseech them to adopt policies which would spare lives and ensure well-being and justice, rather than injustice, loss of life and suffering. It is up to all of us, great and small, to show ourselves equal to, and responsive to, the just demands of the young people of our world in this regard.
All the messages addressed to you on this occasion, Mr. Chairman, show that the international community is being constantly warned against conspiracies and manoeuvres against the just causes of people, and I have always drawn attention to the Israeli conspiracy, plots and manoeuvres, with United States collusion, against the well-being and security of our peoples - painful proof of the real nature of Zionist ideology, which has inherited the essence of colonialism. It has been made clear to us over the decades - and I have had to point this out again and again - that despite everything we have said, despite our predictions, in most cases events have gone beyond anything we have predicted and have exceeded the limits of imaginable horror.
But our people have stood firm against all these plots and conspiracies and have remained deeply devoted and loyal to the eternal principles which have guided them and ensured that they have never fallen victim to the treacherous manoeuvres of the aggressor. Therefore, we have remained loyal to humanism and democracy, to international law and legality.
Our courage has never failed us for a moment. Even during the darkest moments of our struggle we have always tried to respond to the efforts made in the quest for a political solution which would guarantee our legitimate rights and spare all of mankind war and desolation. We have never dropped the olive branch, and the enemy has never succeeded in disarming us. We have struggled and held firm, and we shall continue to do so.
Our struggle will not end, for it is a struggle for our very rights. Aggression and occupation will not vanquish us. We shall continue our struggle with undiminished determination, and shall pursue our political initiatives in the same way, never losing faith in the international community, for this is the era of the peoples, and the international community will ultimately succeed in imposing its will.
That is why we in the PLO supported and participated in the International Conference on the Question of Palestine, held at Geneva after five regional conferences which brought together representatives from all. over the world. That Conference was held in spite of the obstacles raised by the United States and in spite of the pressure and threats of that country, and it was able to adopt a declaration and a programme of action.
All of this shows clearly that with the exception of two règimes - the Israeli and United States règimes - the world's Governments and peoples are in favour of the Palestinian cause and have opted for a solution guaranteeing justice in the region. There can be no doubt about what kind of justice: it is clear to everyone. The international community has repeatedly reaffirmed, in the United Nations and outside it, what right is at stake in this matter. In a word, it is our right of self-determination, to return to our homes and to our motherland, from which we were chased. It is our right to recover our property, of which we were dispossessed, and it is our right to build our own State on our own national soil of Palestine.
The PLO, the sole authentic representative of the Palestinian people, is most appreciative of the results of the Geneva Conference as reflected in its declaration and programme of action, and we implore our friends in the General Assembly to implement the provisions of those documents.
No one today can be ignorant of our sufferings. The Members of this Organization have always stood by our side, making it possible to withstand this crisis, the dangers of which are well known to all. Without going into detail, I would recall that we in the PLO possess political and moral principles which cannot be shaken by crises or difficulties. The cause of our people - the liberation of our territory and the recovery of our rights is a cause we shall never renounce, whatever the crises or problems we may face. For us, everything else pales beside that cause.
The PLO, the supreme spokesman for and representative of our people, the symbol of its struggle, the voice of its desires and aspirations, is no mere political group or revolutionary party. It is the political embodiment of Palestinian being, of the will of the Palestinian people to lead that patriotic being to its true, ultimate reality in a free, independent and worthy homeland where all citizens can live in dignity, guided by the unchanging principles that dictate the policy of the PLO.
Our loyalty and commitment to the principles of political democracy and to the right of every Palestinian to have his or her say with respect to his or her destiny and struggle have made our policies and our conferences a beacon for the entire democratic world. Our strength is based on our principles. During crises we have always supported the legitimacy and democracy which ultimately constitute the best weapons in the struggle for victory.
The next principle of our organization is inherited from our long struggle, from our devotion to the free will of the people, from our national history and from our deep-rooted knowledge of the truth about the Arab-Israeli conflict. It is the democratic nature of our organization and the struggle of our people, which no one can call into question, for there has been ample proof that throughout our struggle we have remained a democratic Arab people.
Our next principle is that we always turn to the Arab nation for our strategic needs. That is why we have always worked to strengthen our ties to our Arab brethren. Often the PLO has been a gaming piece, tossed from one country to another. It has acted as a runner, as an intermediary in problems which set one part of the Arab world against another. On these occasions we have always offered our solidarity to the peoples which have been the victims of policies of hegemony.
In conclusion, I should like to say that the Palestinian people has never failed its cause. The PLO is their sole, authentic spokesman and the PLO is not a passing, ephemeral phenomenon, nor does it depend upon any resolution because it will always survive any resolution or determination to make it disappear and the world must finally realize that the colonial era has disappeared never to return and that no one can oppress a people determined to defend their right to existence and freedom.
I am aware of the extreme difficulty of the task entrusted to you, Sir, and to my colleagues here. I am aware that we have chosen the narrow gate and that this road is fraught with ambushes. I know we are travelling through minefields at all times in this struggle. Nevertheless, I have faith in our people and I am convinced that it will achieve its objectives and will be able to build its State and recover its freedom if there are men of conscience on this earth who come forward to help us. We have faith in the justice of our cause and feel that our people indeed deserves its rightful place in this world.
I should like to take this opportunity to express the strongest support and deep feeling of the people and Government of Afghanistan, and my own, on the occasion of the commemoration of 29 November, the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, in their just and noble struggle for self-determination and for the establishment of an independent State of their own.
The Palestine question, as one of the most challenging and continuing problems of this century, is the product of collusion between the forces of imperialism and international zionism spearheaded against the Arab national liberation movements. It is quite obvious that the developments now taking place in the region clearly confirm the strategic dimension planned out by the imperialist Powers since the establishment of the Zionist State of Israel at the expense of the Palestinian people.
Israel is granted total support in the economic, political and military fields by the imperialist Powers, led by United States imperialism, with the aim of turning Israel into the gendarme for the region to safeguard the inhuman interests of imperialism and into an instrument of suppression in dealing with the Arab national liberation movements.
Zionist Israel, with the full support of United States imperialism, occupied Arab territories and, despite the call of the international community to withdraw from those occupied territories, it continues its occupation of Arab lands. The invasion of Lebanon for the purpose of physically liquidating the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO), the genocidal acts in the Sabra and Shatila camps and other similar barbaric actions in the occupied territories, as well as the inhuman and aggressive activities of United States imperialism under the umbrella of the so-called multinational peace-keeping forces directed against the patriotic forces of Lebanon and defenceless Palestinian refugees, constitute flagrant violations of the generally accepted norms governing international relations.
The Democratic Republic of Afghanistan, while fully supporting the just cause of the Palestinian people, believes that the key to the solution of the Middle East problem is the complete, unconditional and immediate withdrawal of Israeli occupationist forces from all occupied territories and total restoration of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people. Rejecting any design to isolate the question of Palestine from the rest of the Middle East, such as partial agreements, including the Camp David deals, we believe that the only realistic way to work out a political settlement of the Palestinian problem is through the holding of an international conference with full-scale participation of the Palestine Liberation Organization, the sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people. The implementation of relevant United Nations resolutions, including the resolutions and recommendations of the International Conference on the Question of Palestine, held from 29 August to 7 September 1983 at Geneva, will serve as effective steps towards the solution of the Middle East problem.
In their struggle against zionism and imperialism and for independence, freedom, peace and progress in the Middle East, the unity and solidarity of all peace-loving Arab peoples, especially the unity of the Palestinian people, in spite of United States imperialism's attempts to destroy it, is heading towards final and complete victory.
I should like to reiterate once again the firm and all round support of the people and Government of the Democratic Republic of Afghanistan for the just struggle of the Arab people of Palestine. We are confident that the just cause of the Palestinians will triumph and that soon they will achieve their rightful goals.
H.E. Mr. Chadli Bengjedid, President of Algeria
The demands made by the Zionist forces of a martyred people, which culminated with the Sabra and Shatila massacres, have made the situation intolerable. The logic of the continued settlement of Israelis on Arab lands is the same as that of the liquidation of the Palestinian people and its resistance and denies their right to self-determination and return.
Algeria, for its part, while condemning the plots hatched against the Palestinian people and their resistance, reaffirms that it is up to the United Nations to set everything in motion for the Palestinian people to recover their legitimate national rights, including their right to self-determination and their right to return and establish their own independent and sovereign State under the leadership of their only legitimate representative, the Palestine Liberation Organization.
Thirty-six years have elapsed without the United Nations being able to solve the Palestinian question. This period has been accompanied by serious problems and difficulties leading the international community to conclude that a just and durable peace in the Middle East cannot be achieved except by enabling the Palestinian people to realize their inalienable rights, including the right to self-determination and sovereignty, the right to establish their own independent State on their own national soil and the right to return to their homes and to the recovery of the property usurped from them.
Hence, the General Assembly decided to convene an International Conference on the Question of Palestine in Geneva, from 29 August to 7 September 1983. Although the overwhelming majority of the world's countries participated in this important Conference, some States directly involved in the question of the Middle East chose not to participate. We therefore ask these States to shoulder their responsibilities in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations.
The Middle East region is passing through a most difficult period, which is daily being aggravated by Israel's continuous aggression against the Palestinian people and the peoples of the neighbouring Arab countries, thus endangering international peace and security.
Israel destroyed the peaceful nuclear installations in Iraq and then proceeded to invade Lebanon, destroying cities and villages and adopting further repressive measures against the Palestinian refugees and putting many of them in prisons and concentration camps in the occupied Arab territories and in southern Lebanon. The Israeli occupation of southern Lebanon is clear proof of its expansionist designs, which are supported and encouraged by certain Western circles.
Israel continues to usurp Arab lands in occupied Palestine and to establish settlements there, while expelling certain mayors from the cities and pursuing its aggressive policies in order to terrorize the Arab inhabitants and encourage them to leave.
In its deep commitment to the right of peoples to self-determination in accordance with the principles and resolutions of the United Nations, the State of Bahrain reconfirms its full solidarity with the just and legitimate struggle of the Palestinian people, under the leadership of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), its sole, legitimate representative, and calls upon the international community to make every effort to solve the problem of Palestine to recover the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people and to put an end to Israeli aggression against the Palestinian people in the occupied Arab territories and beyond.
Israel's aggression against the neighbouring Arab States resulted in five wars in the Middle East and nearly unleashed a new world conflagration and its pursuit of this aggressive policy continues to threaten the entire international community.
H.E. Gen. André Kolingba, President of the Military Committee for National Recovery, Head of the Central African Republic
While the final conclusion of this struggle must proceed from the efforts of the international community, it is none the less true that the unity of the Palestinian people is indispensable for waging this struggle. That is why on this same occasion I invite all factions within the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) to set aside their differences and focus their efforts on a single goal, namely, bringing about an independent Palestinian State in keeping with the relevant United Nations resolutions.
In wishing all success for the commemoration of this Day, please accept, Sir, my highest esteem.
H.E. Dr. Fidel Castro Ruz, President of the Council of State and Government of the Republic of Cuba
For more than 35 years, despite the specific provisions of General Assembly resolutions 181 (II) and 273 (III), which established two sovereign States in Palestine, and the undertaking given by Israel to respect the Charter and obligations of the United Nations, the Arab peoples and particularly the Palestinian people have known only aggression from Israel.
Recently, the world witnessed with horror and consternation how the Zionist aggressor, contrary to all international legal norms, violated with impunity the frontiers of the Lebanese State, invading its territory and applying a criminal blockade against the population living in West Beirut while at the same time submitting them to an interminable and ferocious bombardment and, in collusion with Lebanese fascist gangs, committing one of the most monstrous and abominable crimes ever recorded in history in the Palestinian refugee camps of Sabra and Shatila which cost the lives of thousands of men, women, children and old people.
More than a year after all this, the Israeli troops continue to occupy part of the sovereign territory of Lebanon, committing all kinds of crimes and villainous deeds, not only with the consent of their imperialist master but also backed up by the presence of the large contingent of United States troops deployed there under the cover provided by the so-called "multinational force".
Obviously, and as has been demonstrated on countless occasions, the United States bears the main responsibility for the warmongering policy carried out by Israel in the Middle East.
The fundamental rights of the Palestinian people have been defined and reaffirmed for many years by the United Nations, the Movement of Non-Aligned Countries, the Organization of African Unity and other international organizations. It is only the intransigent policy of Israel which impedes the enjoyment of those rights. In pursuing that policy it relies on the United States which, in addition to providing it with large-scale economic, military, strategic and political assistance, by means of its veto prevents the Security Council from adopting effective measures to put an end to the criminal policy being carried out by the State of Israel.
The convening of the International Peace Conference on the Middle East, pursuant to the decision of the International Conference on the Question of Palestine held under United Nations auspices at Geneva from 29 August to 7 September 1983, will without doubt contribute to the search for a solution to the crisis besetting that region of the world, a solution that will enable the Palestinian people to exercise its inalienable rights in Palestine on the basis of United Nations resolutions.
The United Nations, in implementing its objectives and principles, must act consistently, immediately and firmly to stay the criminal hand of the aggressors and thus safeguard its own prestige by adopting the measures set forth in the Charter and applying them against Israel.
Contrary to the international community's call for peace, imperialist interests endorse the policy of aggression as the formula for solving international problems and disputes, and thus we see this policy being carried out not only in the Middle East, where the aggressive presence of the United States contributes to aggravating the prevailing situation, but also in southern Africa and Central America where puppet and bloodthirsty régimes serve as willing pawns by seeking by means of mass murder to thwart the most noble aspirations of those peoples which are struggling to cast off the yoke of colonialism and neo-colonialism.
Cuba once again condemns Israel for the criminal policy which it is carrying out in the occupied territories, and we urge the international bodies not to allow the racist and genocidal policy which Israel is applying against the Palestinian population and the Arab population in general to go unpunished.
The people and Government of Cuba, together with the world's progressive forces, reiterate their resolute support for and solidarity with the heroic people of Palestine and its sole and legitimate representative, the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), in their struggle for a just cause, namely restoration of the inalienable rights that have been denied them for more than three decades. The unity of the PLO is an essential element in that struggle.
I take this opportunity to express, on behalf of the Government and people of Cuba, our gratitude for the constructive role which you have played in the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People in support of the legitimate struggle of that heroic people.
The commemoration of this International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People at this decisive moment when their struggle is passing through a difficult phase, once again manifests the ever-knowing determination of the international community to seek anew an urgent solution to the just cause of the Palestinian people.
The plight of the Palestinians and the denial of the fulfilment of their legitimate aspirations to independence and statehood have been a matter of great concern to the peoples and Governments of Africa. African countries, through the OAU, have for the past several years not only expressed their full support for and solidarity with the just struggle of the Palestinian people but also exerted every effort to make a tangible contribution to the, solution of the problem.
The attempt to get rid of the Palestinian factor in the Middle East by opposing the Palestinian revolution has created the present unprecedented tragic situation, which poses a grave threat to the rightful cause of the Palestinian people as well as to the peace and security of the entire region. It is Africa's earnest hope that the international community will bring pressure to bear on the protagonists to put an end to the present grave and tragic situation.
While once again reiterating our firm solidarity with the people of Palestine and our full support for their just cause, let me reassure you of Africa's unwavering commitment to the search for a just, comprehensive and lasting solution to the question of Palestine, which is the crux of the Middle East problem.
The commemoration by the United Nations of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People confirms once more the commitment of the international community to the principles underlying the Charter of the United Nations and expressing the need for respect of human rights, the first of which is the right to self-determination. We call on all States of the world, particularly the States directly concerned with the problem of the Middle East, to base their policies and positions on these lofty Charter principles and do their utmost to put an end to the human tragedy to which our region has been subjected for more than 35 years.
This can be accomplished only by recognizing the rights of the Palestinian people and enabling them to enjoy these rights fully, without any outside pressure or interference in their affairs.
Egypt has always felt that the question of the Palestinian people and its cause and struggle are part of its own struggle. Aware of these realities from the very start, it has shouldered its national responsibilities and has not been remiss in lending every possible effort to our Palestinian brothers in defending their just cause, convinced, as we are, of our common destiny and the justice of that cause and determined to implement all relevant United Nations resolutions for a just, durable and comprehensive peace in the region.
I must point out here that the International Conference on the Question of Palestine, convened by the United Nations last summer in Geneva, and the resolutions and recommendations emanating therefrom are an important step on the road to solving the question of Palestine.
Finally, I wish to express our deepest appreciation' for the role undertaken by the United Nations and its various organs in support of the cause of the Palestinian people.
On the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, the German Democratic Republic again takes this opportunity to pledge unswerving solidarity with the Palestinian people in the struggle for its inalienable rights, under the leadership of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO).
Acting upon the fundamental principles of its socialist foreign policy, and in accordance with the decisions of the United Nations, the German Democratic Republic calls for a comprehensive, just and lasting peace settlement in the Middle East, the centre-piece of which is the resolution of the question of Palestine. Indispensable prerequisites for this are the complete withdrawal of Israeli troops from all Arab territories occupied since 1967, including East Jerusalem, recognition of the legitimate rights of the Arab people of Palestine, including its right to establish an independent State of its own, and the assurance of the right of all States of the region to secure an independent existence and development.
The people of the German Democratic Republic is deeply concerned by the escalation of tension in the Middle East, thus endangering peace. The hegemonistic designs of the Israeli aggressor, backed by the most reactionary imperialist circles of the United States, are aimed at imposing another war on the Arab States.
That dangerous course, posing an extremely grave threat to world peace, is most strongly condemned by the German Democratic Republic. It is urgent to oppose those actions in contravention of international law decisively and through the voice of the United Nations. It becomes more and more imperative consistently to implement the resolutions of the United Nations General Assembly and Security Council.
The International Conference on the Question of Palestine in Geneva, which adopted the Programme of Action for that purpose, re-emphasized the usefulness of an international Middle East conference with the participation of all interested parties, including the Palestine Liberation Organization. Implementation of that proposal would be a practical step towards breaking the cycle of force and war in the region. Concerted action by all peace-loving forces seeking to achieve this aim is now essential to eliminate the hotbed of conflict and to end the suffering of the Palestinian people. It is necessary to avoid anything that might encourage aggressive imperialist quarters in their drive to aggravate the situation. The German Democratic Republic will also henceforth stand firmly at the side of the Palestinian people in their fight for the implementation of their inalienable national rights, under the leadership of its sole, legitimate representative, the Palestine Liberation Organization.
On behalf of the Government and people of Ghana, and on my own behalf, I welcome this opportunity to convey to the United Nations and especially to the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People our nation's sincere solidarity with all Palestinians.
May I also extend my profound felicitations and best wishes to all those who are struggling for Palestinian freedom for the successful execution of an onerous responsibility.
It is for us in Ghana a solemn day for reflection and rededication to the worthy cause of the Palestinian people. It is also a day on which we ponder the plight of the millions of oppressed people everywhere who are no less engaged in the wider and relentless struggle for justice and human dignity.
This Day of Solidarity calls for sober reflection by the international community on the struggle for the attainment by the Palestinian people of their inalienable rights. Such an evaluation is especially called for at this time, because the occasion this year unfortunately has coincided with a renewed outbreak of fighting among rival Palestinian combatants. It is a matter of great regret and anguish for us in Ghana to see Palestinian guns turned against Palestinians while the enemy is spared. We therefore address an urgent and sincere appeal to the Palestinian people to put an end to the internecine conflict which does nothing but undermine the unity of their cause and struggle for freedom and justice. Such internal squabbles can only advance the aims of Israel, which is bent on destroying Palestinian nationalism by acts of war and terror.
For more than 36 years now and since they were uprooted from their homeland by brute force and other insidious measures, the Palestinian people have suffered every kind of indignity and injustice. They have been subjected to the most atrocious acts of oppression, torture, indiscriminate massacre and systematic genocide by the Israelis, who have seized vast areas of their territories and installed themselves in permanent occupation, as well as in defiance of the United Nations and the international community as a whole. Incessant acts of aggression, repression and molestation by Israeli forces over the years have not only taken a heavy toll in Palestinian lives but have also condemned the Palestinian people to a life of homelessness and insecurity.
We recall in particular hundreds of defenceless civilian victims of the Sabra and Shatila massacre conducted under Israeli military supervision. The cruel irony of that savage act was that the erstwhile victims of Nazi persecution should even indirectly permit an act of genocide against the Palestinian people. The cruelty in that massacre and other acts directed at the military and political liquidation of the Palestinian people is again being condemned as we commemorate those who were killed.
We rededicate ourselves, therefore, to the continued support of the Palestinian cause. We reaffirm once again our total solidarity with the Palestinian people in their heroic struggle to recover their homeland. We stand by them and endorse once again the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people to self-determination and the establishment of an independent and sovereign State of their own in Palestine. To that end and in the interest of a just and comprehensive peace in the Middle East, we call on Israel to put an end to its illegal annexation of occupied Arab territories and to withdraw from them and all other Palestinian territories.
H.E. Mr. Ahmed Sekou Toure, President of the People's Revolutionary Republic of Guinea
On the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, the Hungarian people join me in assuring the Palestinian Arab people of our support in their struggle for a just cause.
We continue to be convinced that only a just and comprehensive settlement of the Middle East crisis, along with the attainment of the legitimate rights of the Palestinian Arab people, can guarantee the peace and security of the countries in the region. The settlement of the crisis can be achieved by peaceful means, through negotiations, with the participation of all parties concerned, including the sole, legitimate representative of the Palestinian Arab people, the Palestine Liberation Organization.
Therefore we are deeply concerned at all developments that weaken the unity of the liberation movement, jeopardize the results achieved so far in the struggle and favour only those who disregard the most fundamental rights and just aspirations of the Palestinian Arab people.
While expressing our solidarity with the struggle of the Palestinian Arab people for their legitimate rights and for the establishment of their own independent State, we sincerely wish that the Palestine Liberation Organization will be able to restore its unity and strengthen the joint stand against Israeli aggression and imperialism with all the forces struggling for a just settlement of the Middle East crisis.
On behalf of the Presidential Council of the Hungarian People's Republic and the whole Hungarian people, I wish you every success in the struggle for your just cause.
On this day, the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, I should like, on behalf of the Government and the people of Indonesia, to reaffirm our unswerving support for the Palestinian people in their struggle to realize their inalienable rights.
This annual commemoration is an important occasion for all States which value human dignity, freedom and justice to speak out unequivocally on behalf of the Palestinian cause for self-determination and for the establishment of an independent Palestinian State. Moreover, this commemoration by the United Nations should also serve as an opportunity to renew our determination to implement all relevant United Nations resolutions on Palestine.
The plight of the Palestinian people has continued to be a central preoccupation of the international community for nearly four decades. Throughout this period the Palestinians have had to endure untold misery and suffering in their just struggle against Israeli aggression, occupation and racial discrimination.
As a nation which upholds freedom and independence and which opposes colonial domination in all its forms and manifestations, Indonesia will steadfastly contribute to the common struggle for the realization of the independence of Palestine. We will continue to support any plan acceptable to the Arab Nation which will assure the Palestinians of their right to live in freedom in their own land.
Indonesia gladly welcomes the decisions adopted by the International Conference on the Question of Palestine held in Geneva last September. The fact that no less than 139 States sent high-level delegations to the Conference was evidence of world-wide determination to seek more effective ways and means towards the attainment of the national rights of the Palestinians as a necessary part of a peaceful and comprehensive settlement of the Middle East question.
We hope that the resolutions of this Conference will shortly be implemented, so as to achieve the desired objectives and in order to end the agony and suffering endured by the Palestinian people for so many decades.
Indonesia, together with the other Members of the United Nations, the Non-Aligned Movement and the Organization of the Islamic Conference, will continue to strive for the adoption of effective measures and actions which will compel Israel to abandon its abhorrent policies and to withdraw from all occupied Arab territories.
In conclusion, on behalf of the Government and the people of Indonesia, I once again express our most sincere support and respect for the heroic struggle of the Palestinian people, under the leadership of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), their sole and legitimate representative. We wish to pay homage to this brave nation which, through its unceasing sacrifices and hardships, has demonstrated to the world that freedom and justice cannot be denied for long.
IRAN, ISLAMIC REPUBLIC OF
H.E. Hojjatol Eslam Seyyed Ali Khomenei, President of the Islamic Republic of Iran
Mankind's bitter experience of almost four decades of illegitimate Zionist control over Palestine has demonstrated that aggression is an inherent characteristic of the base called Israel and that compromise with such an element does not conform with any logic. There is no doubt that the long-term policy of the imperialist base called Israel in the region is the destruction of the cause of Palestine and the strengthening of the presence of American imperialism in the Middle East. The latest attempts to strengthen strategic ties between Israel and the United States stands witness to this policy.
We believe that the basic solution to the question of Palestine and to the whole Middle East crisis can be found in a sincere effort towards a unified Islamic position and a united Islamic front against world arrogance, zionism and imperialism. We consider the struggle against such oppressors and aggressors as the Zionist régime and its imperialist supporter, the United States, to be an Islamic duty of all Moslems of the world and a human duty of all honourable human beings, and we expect all those who advocate justice and are concerned about international peace and security to take practical steps in support of the oppressed people of Palestine.
The Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran, in conformity with the above position of principle and on the basis of its commitment emanating from the divine teachings of the Holy Koran, declares once again that it extends its unreserved solidarity with and support for the rightful and legitimate struggle of the Palestinian people to recapture their occupied homeland and thereby to free the lands of Islam from the Zionist usurpers.
It is the earnest hope of the Islamic Republic of Iran that the internal differences between the Palestinian freedom fighters are immediately resolved so that their unified potentials can be once again directed towards their noble cause of struggling against the enemy.
Indeed, overt attempts have been made by Libya and Syria to divide the ranks of the PLO. These attempts are in contradiction of the Rabat Summit Meeting manifesto of Arab unity. In this regard there can be no doubt that these attempts fall within the context of Zionist machinations which, sadly, are tacitly supported by certain international circles involving themselves in this game for the purpose of consolidating Israeli occupation of Palestinian and Arab territories and the evacuation of the original inhabitants from Palestinian soil. These attempts to violate its national identity and territorial integrity are carried out at the expense and in violation of the territorial integrity and national integrity of other neighbouring Arab peoples.
Such attempts and such tragic occurrences as the Sabra and Shatila massacres, the occupation of a large part of Lebanese territory, the actions against the Palestinian people themselves showing Israel`s desire to remain on Palestinian territory, its settlements on such territory, its occupation of the West Bank and the escalation of its terror activities against the Palestinians - all this is working towards the gratification of the Israeli desire for territory according to the Zionist plan.
However, we are certain that the Palestinian people will emerge triumphant and stronger from these trials, because that people has unshakeable faith in the justice of its cause. It is ready to continue its ardent struggle and ensure the triumph of its cause, aware of the need for solidarity and for a united front against the aggressor and its allies. It knows, too, that it can count on the support of the Arab States and all other States that cherish peace and justice.
Iraq has always supported the PLO and its legitimate leaders and taken a vigorous stand against attempts to weaken or dismantle that organization or to deprive it of its political will. The Palestinian cause will always remain in the forefront of our concerns, for we are convinced that this question is at the very heart of the conflict in the Middle East and the problems this region knows. We are also aware that, unless and until there is a just and honourable solution to this problem restoring the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, this region will know no peace, security or prosperity, and peace and security in the world will thus remain gravely threatened.
Among the factors jeopardizing international peace is the continued Iranian aggression against our country, begun some three years ago. The régime of Iran is continuing its aggressive acts against Iraq despite international efforts to put an end to the hostilities and despite Iraq's support for those efforts. Fresh proof of the reprehensible expansionist aims of that régime is the large-scale military attack against Panjwin, in the north of Iraq. This attack followed upon Security Council resolution 540 (1983) and constitutes open defiance of the will of the Security Council and of the international community. Iraq has expressed its position with regard to that resolution; indeed, we supported it, but the Iranian régime, on the other hand, merely intensified its aggression, thus making clear that régime's inherently belligerent nature and its defiance of the resolutions of the Security Council and international unanimity on the need to put an end to those military operations and to settle such disputes by peaceful means. For its part Iraq is resolved to thwart the Iranian aggression and to defend its peace and dignity. The continuation of Iranian aggression is further proof that Iran has acted in close co-operation with the Zionist entity and that there is military collusion between the two - a fact which is no mystery to anyone.
On this occasion we wish to offer our praise for the International Conference on the Question of Palestine, held recently in Geneva, which yielded very positive results, including the Declaration and the Programme of Action. One of the hopeful elements in that Conference, in view of the crisis in the PLO, was the participation of that organization in the work of the Conference on a basis of equality with other States.
In conclusion, it is a pleasure for me to reaffirm our great confidence in your Committee. We express the wish that it will continue its very praiseworthy efforts for the Palestinian cause as seriously and effectively as it has customarily done in the past.
H.M. the King of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan
This solidarity has been expressed by States and peoples throughout the world. It is the happy outcome of the struggle of the Palestinian people and proof that the international community is well aware of the justness of the cause of the Palestinian people. All Israeli attempts to discredit the Palestinian cause have failed. Israel has tried to make the world believe that it desires peace and security and does not seek to extend its territory to the detriment of the Arab nation. But today the international community has realized that the Israeli expansionist and racist practices and policies are aimed at expanding its authority. There has been a positive change in the position of the international community which is no passing phenomenon. On the contrary, this fact is part of the political negotiations undertaken by the Arab States and the Palestinian people to arrive at a just and comprehensive solution to this problem, which has left open wounds for the Middle East region and the world as a whole.
Indeed, the Palestinian problem has for a decade been in the forefront of the questions being dealt with by the international and regional organizations. The problem facing the Palestinians is a political one: to arrive at a just overall settlement and the recognition of their national rights. After the 1967 Israeli aggression, Israel's scorn for all international peace plans, the continued Israeli occupation of Palestinian territory, the illegal establishment of settlements and the aggression launched against neighbouring Arab States, a turning-point was reached which has led to international support for the rights of the Palestinian people. That support is embodied in the recognition of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and the isolation of Israel. Light has been cast on the true face of Israel and its policy, its scorn for Security Council and General Assembly resolutions, the way it turns its back on all roads to peace and to a settlement in the region and, finally, its declared refusal to give up the occupied Arab territories.
From the outset of the struggle of the Palestinian people, we in Jordan have been at the forefront of support for their cause. We have made it our Arab duty, which imposes on us the obligation to stand by our brothers and support their cause. We have shared the hopes and sorrows of the Palestinian people. We have espoused their struggle to end their tribulations by defending their legitimate rights. Ever since the 1967 aggression we have been aware of the Israeli expansionist tendencies and the danger this represents to the region. That is why we have chosen a political solution to liberate the inhabitants of the territories and assist the Palestinian people to recover their Arab rights and put an end to Israeli occupation. Accordingly, we endorsed Security Council resolution 242 (1967), which declares the inadmissibility of the occupation of the territory of others by force and through war. Similarly, after the 1973 war we opted for a political solution and, with the other Arab States concerned, we endorsed Security Council resolution 338 (1973), which includes the terms of resolution 242 (1967).
Together with all other Arab States, we are, at the present time, struggling to achieve a just overall settlement of this problem, because Israel is taking advantage of the time factor to alter the physical structure of the occupied territories and to strengthen its occupation by imposing a fait accompli. Israel's colonial settlements defy all international laws and resolutions and are part of a deliberate policy of uprooting the original inhabitants and altering the demographic structure of the occupied territories. In order to face up to and thwart this danger, we in Jordan have adopted measures likely to strengthen the resistance of the Palestinian people. With this aim in mind, we have undertaken negotiations at every level, both Arab and international. After the Israeli occupation of a wide area of Lebanese territory in 1982, the Arab States and the PLO succeeded in submitting a comprehensive Arab initiative to ensure an overall and just solution to this problem. That initiative was supported by the Arab leaders, including the PLO, at the Fez Conference. It consists of an Arab peace plan, incorporating principles from United Nations resolutions calling for Israel's withdrawal from all Arab territories occupied in 1967 and, first and foremost, from the Arab city of Jerusalem. It is a demonstration of good faith by the Arabs and their desire to provide all guarantees of justice for the Palestinian people, which have suffered every kind of tribulation, including terrorism and dispersion. We are helping them strive for peace and security throughout the region, thus enabling States to achieve peace and prosperity.
Israel continues to ignore all peace initiatives and implements its expansionist plans to the detriment of the Palestinian people and the Arab nation. Israel seeks to overpower the Arab population. Nevertheless, the legitimate Palestinian leaders have through international actions affirmed that they are ready to play an active part in the peace process guaranteeing them an end to occupation, a return to their national identity and a free life in dignity.
Jordan hereby reaffirms its devotion to these principles and reaffirms that, like other Arab States, we shall provide aid and encouragement to the Palestinian people so that they may recover their legitimate rights and thwart the hegemonistic attempts designed to undermine their autonomy and political will. We believe that any attempt to uphold the political will of the Palestinian people runs counter to Israeli plans. We call on everyone to open their eyes to Israel's true face, its real ambition and agreed. We appeal to the world to show solidarity with the Palestinian people so that they may join the community of nations and enjoy their rights.
H.E.Comrade Kim Il Sung, President of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea
The Korean people has been actively supporting and encouraging the national liberation struggle of the Palestinian people since the inception of the Palestine question and in the future too will stand unswervingly on the side of the fighting Palestinian people until they achieve a final victory.
Reaffirming our militant solidarity with the liberation cause of Palestine, I avail myself of this opportunity sincerely to wish you, the resistance fighters and the entire Palestinian people great successes in your rightful struggle for achieving national independence and territorial integrity.
No words can describe its dimensions. This is a case of the cruellest manifestations of injustice - one which has been characterized by deception, distortion, wrongdoing, levity, indifference and abandonment. It has also been ill-fated from the very beginning when the partition plan was announced by the United Nations on this very day in 1947. This is the case of a people whose human rights are violated and for which the various international laws and norms do not apply. The occupying aggressor has usurped the largest and most significant part of the Palestinian people's homeland, denying them freedom and keeping a hold over their territories. It is pursuing efforts to annex all that is left of their homeland through established illegal and repressive measures, as well as through the policy of faits accomplis in an attempt to distort the case by trickery and deviousness and to prevent the rightful owners of the land from recovering their inalienable rights, including the right to self-determination. Strange as it may seem, the annexation of new land is now being carried on under the pretext of security. What hypocrisy and what a false pretext which cannot be based on any logic or right.
For 36 years, this cause has been crying out for justice to be done, but to no avail. One may wonder why this cause has been set aside for such a long time. It is significant to note that the aggressor has been placing one obstacle after another in the way of any solution, intending to keep it in abeyance by disregarding international decisions and flouting the will of the international community and its institutions. However, it would not have been able to do so had it not been for the absolute support it has been receiving from certain well-known international quarters. As a matter of fact, the reason why this case has become so tangled is because of this strong support, which is the main obstacle still preventing a just solution and keeping the arguments in a vicious circle. Is it not incumbent upon those responsible quarters to advocate right, justice and fair play in the world without any discrimination, instead of helping the perpetrators of injustice and endorsing their policies?
However, there remains a ray of hope that right will eventually prevail. Do not despair of the mercy of Allah: mankind has never lacked and will never lack conscientious people such as those gathered today at the Headquarters of this world Organization to raise their voices in support of this unjustly treated people in its legitimate struggle for the restoration of its inalienable rights and its integrity, and to ease the sufferings brought about by the partition of its land. Though the announcement of that partition is a painful memory for those people, they are still nostalgic for the days when they were living so happily on the soil of their homeland before it was occupied by the usurpers. They look hopefully forward to a prosperous future which, God willing, will be achieved.
A cursory glance at the map of Palestine at the time of partition and its delineated borders is enough to expose the aggressor's expansionist designs and to show to what lengths its arrogance can lead it. Honourable men will wonder what is left for the rightful owners of the country and where they will find justice.
Before concluding, we must assert the urgent need to solve this just case which sooner or later will threaten world peace. We also confirm anew our total solidarity with this beleaguered people and call upon all international bodies, particularly the United Nations which represents the will of the international community, to shoulder their full responsibility and make every possible effort to give this people the opportunity to attain its legitimate national aspirations to live in peace on its ancestral land. Only thus can there be any chance for peace, stability, well-being and prosperity in this troubled region of the world.
The Zionist aggression has extended beyond Palestine, occupying more Arab territories and pursuing the Palestinian people in their refugee camps and in other neighbouring Arab countries. Responsibility falls, first of all, on those forces which have hindered and continue to hinder implementation of United Nations resolutions and have supplied and continue to supply the Zionist aggressor with weapons in order to create additional settlements, kill more people and occupy more Arab territory. The United States of America continues to encourage aggression, to supply the aggressor with the most sophisticated weaponry, thereby enabling and encouraging it to occupy Arab territories and to flout all international resolutions, and to refuse to recognize the national rights of the Palestinian people. That is the central question that should be discussed and considered on this Day.
The time has come for the Palestinian people and the Arab nation to evaluate the previous period, which has shown that political action, in spite of its importance, will always remain marginal if not accompanied by serious military action on the battle field. The question of Palestine will not be solved by indecisive initiatives or distorted contacts that only divide the Palestinians further and weaken their revolution; only through struggle and a clear vision, in accordance with revolutionary objectives, will success be achieved. To continue with a policy of indecisiveness will deprive the Palestinian people of their strength and turn them into an instrument for recognizing the aggressor and liquidating the Palestinian revolution - hence eliminating the PLO itself.
The international community represented in the United Nations must evaluate this situation with the same seriousness, since it is clear that United Nations resolutions remain without effect if they are not backed by coercive measures. The time has come to adopt practical measures under Chapter VII of the Charter. The international community is today invited to provide full support to the Palestinian people, under the leadership of the PLO, to recover their usurped rights.
I am convinced that the Palestinian people, with the assistance of all peace-loving forces, will soon enjoy their rights and objectives in freedom and independence. The people of the Jamahiriya, which is doing all it can in defence of the Palestinian revolution, confirms anew its determination to continue providing every support and to stand on the side of the Palestinian people until the complete liberation of Palestine is achieved and all the rights of the Palestinian people have been recovered.
The aggression to which our people in the Jamahiriya are exposed and continue to be exposed because of our principled position will not deter us but strengthen our resolve to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with the Palestinian people in their revolution.
Finally, I wish to express to the Committee our appreciation for its efforts on behalf of the cause of the Palestinian people. On such efforts depend the rights of all peoples struggling against imperialism, zionism and racism in all parts of the world. May these efforts be crowned with success.
H.E. Mr. Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, President of Maldives
It is a nature and quality of courage that cannot fail to inspire every single one of us. It is a nature and quality of courage that commands our loyalty, our concern and our active allegiance, not just on this Day of international solidarity with them, but at all times.
Indeed, on this special Day and in the name of the Republic of Maldives, I proclaim to the people of Palestine our abiding faith and confidence in them and their ultimate victory.
For the irrefutable truth remains, as it has done since the occupation by the use of armed aggression by Israel of their homeland, that the battle they wage is the battle of all those, whoever and wherever they may be, who respect justice and self-determination: that, in effect, the battle being waged by the Palestinians is the cause of humanity; that until they are restored to the land God gave them and are thus truly free, none of us are.
It is an evident truth, a reality that the continued use of armed terror, intimidation and propaganda by the occupying force in Palestine, the Zionists, will not, indeed cannot, dilute, and it is a truth and a reality the international community will ignore at its very own peril.
For the aggression inherent in the alienation of the Palestinians from their homeland and its continued military occupation constitutes a challenge to the international community that, if not recognized and met, can only have the gravest of implications.
Indeed, if the aggression and intransigence of Israel are condoned by the big nations of the world they can only be devalued and diminished in the eyes of those who look to them for an example in international affairs. And if such a circumstance continues to exist, on that tolerates the gross and inhuman injustice visited upon the Palestinian people, what, ultimately, is the value of the principles of non-aggression and respect for national sovereignty and territorial integrity, which so many in positions of high influence so often proclaim? What can be the integrity of any of us if we continue to deny the Palestinians that which we so covet for ourselves?
"Israel", and those who through the forces of international imperialism aided its illegitimate birth and who continue to equip it with the tools of oppression and aggression, can no longer evade responsibility for that which they make possible or indeed be immune from the consequences of their own action. The inexorable tide of history, together with the sustained courage of the people of Palestine, will not only, ultimately, defeat them, but relegate them to an enduring condemnation.
It is, of course, tragedy that the forces of division are currently engaged in an attempt to distract and dissipate the Palestinian cause and its essential purpose.
On this special Day, with particular earnest the Government of Maldives asks that those in the international community, especially those in the Islamic world who are so able to prevent division, do so and that they approach such a duty with all possible despatch, that they bring their influence to bear and in so doing bring honour to themselves and be of service to the Palestinian people.
And on this Day too, in the name of the Government and the people of this Republic, I commit our support and our prayers to the people of Palestine and, in solidarity with them, look forward to the time which will herald their emancipation.
The courage and resolve of the Palestinian nation will be sung to future generations around the world and their memory will live in the hearts of the human race as long as it respects the past.
On the occasion of this International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, it is worth recalling that the struggle of this people against the usurpation of its homeland and the genocidal action against its inhabitants is indeed the cause of all the peoples of the world.
In spite of numerous obstacles and of all its hardships and sufferings, the admirable Palestinian people has succeeded in preserving its national identity, thanks to enormous sacrifice and because of the growing solidarity of all the other peoples of the world.
At the level of this world-wide Organization, your Committee is indeed the concrete expression of the near unanimous support for the just resistance of the Arab people of Palestine.
The proliferation and complexity of present difficulties has never dissuaded the Islamic Republic of Mauritania from remaining convinced, as always that, under the leadership of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and owing to the determination of its heroic people, the sister Arab Palestine will survive and win its freedom.
We are also convinced that the unity of the Palestinian national movement,, led by the PLO, will be preserved through brotherly and democratic dialogue, thereby preserving the resolute resistance to the Zionist usurper.
More than ever before, the international community should spare no effort in assisting the Palestinian people to secure its inalienable national rights.
The ruthless violation of Lebanon's sovereignty and the de facto partition of that country makes the Palestinian problem and the entire problem of the Middle East more difficult. The Government of my country considers that the responsibility for this drastic deterioration of the situation in that explosive region is borne essentially by some countries members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), foremost among which is the United States of America, which not only foster the expansionist policy of the Zionists but have themselves chosen the policy of intervention in the Middle East and intervened directly in Lebanon with military forces.
We consider that the indispensable condition for the restoration of peace and stability in the Middle East would be the withdrawal of Israeli forces from all Arab territories occupied since 1967 and the realization of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, including their right to the creation of their own sovereign State. Such a settlement of the Palestinian problem would open the way for the creation of a just and lasting peace in the Middle East. That objective can be secured only through the collective efforts of all parties, including the Palestine Liberation Organization.
In this connection an essential factor would be the strengthening of the unity of action of the Arab States and cohesion of anti-imperialist forces of the Arab world and the Palestine liberation movement itself. The Government of the People's Republic of Mongolia and the people of Mongolia once again express their warm solidarity with the heroic Palestinian people and their decisive support in that people's struggle, under the PLO, for the realization of their inalienable rights, against imperialistic and Zionist aggression and for the establishment of a genuine peace in the Middle East.
I should also like to take this opportunity to wish you, Sir, and your Committee complete success in your noble action aimed at fostering the realization of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people and at enforcing United Nations resolutions with regard to this vital problem.
I am proud to say that Nigeria has been and will continue to be actively associated with the Palestinian cause until the ultimate objective of self-determination for the Palestinians is achieved. Nigeria will also continue to make its own contribution, under the auspices of the United Nations and through contacts with the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), which we recognize as the sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people.
I note with regret, however, the recent outbreak of intense fighting among Palestinian brothers in Lebanon. Such clashes, with the attendant loss of lives, can only serve one purpose: to divert attention from the real problem and dissipate energy and resources which should be properly harnessed for the liberation struggle and the achievement of national self-determination. I therefore call on all Palestinian brothers to settle their internal differences in a peaceful and democratic way.
I also note the important work being done by the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People.
I have noted with interest and hope the conclusions of the recent International Conference on the Question of Palestine, held in Geneva. It is Nigeria's hope that the call contained in the report of the Conference for convening an international conference on the question of Palestine, which will include the Palestinians, the other interested parties and the two super-Powers, will materialize soon.
Finally, I reiterate once again Nigeria's total support for the Palestinian cause. Nigeria totally rejects the evil of racial discrimination, whether in the occupied territories or in southern Africa. We reject the acquisition of territory by force and call upon Israel to withdraw its forces, totally, from all the occupied territories in order to pave the way for the Palestinians to exercise their inalienable right of self-determination.
Israel is pursuing an openly expansionist policy in the region. In pursuance of its infamous aims, it is engaged in relentless oppression of the Palestinian people in an attempt to usurp their inalienable rights and to destroy their spiritual and cultural heritage. Repeated attempts have also been made to desecrate the Holy Places of Islam in the occupied Al-Quds Al-Sharif. Pakistan has voiced its strong protest and expressed its deep concern over such desecration of our Holy Places, as well as the excavations being conducted adjacent to the Dome of the Rock, which threaten the Holy Al-Agsa Mosque.
Israel by its policy of repeated provocations and unceasing acts of aggression continues to defy world public opinion and flouts the principles of international law and the United Nations Charter. The international community, through the United Nations and other bodies, has already condemned the Zionist attempts to alter the physical character, demographic composition and institutional structure, as well as the status, of the occupied territories, including Al-Quds Al-Sharif. The Zionist authorities must be made to realize that they can never succeed in suppressing the indomitable will of the Palestinian people through such wanton acts.
On this Day, the Government and the people of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan renew their resolute solidarity with the Palestinian brethren and reiterate their pledge to support the Palestinians in their just struggle to regain their inalienable rights. Pakistan calls upon the world community to assume its international obligations and compel Israel to restore the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, without which a lasting peace in the Middle East will not be possible.
The observances of the International Day of Solidarity this year are taking place in extremely grave circumstances; American imperialism is seeking to exploit the current situation in the Middle East to promote its expansionist goals at the expense of the interests of Arab nations. The same is true of its attempts to divert world attention from United States activities aimed against the most vital interests of the Arab people of Palestine in the occupied territories. It is therefore the urgent moral duty of the international community constantly to bear in mind the truth that the essence of the Middle East conflict is the negation of the rights of the Arab people of Palestine. The delay of a just solution to the Palestinian question can only lead to a further aggravation of the conflict, intensification of tension in the Middle East and diminishing chances for a lasting and just peace in the region.
The United Nations still faces the great task of undertaking resolute action to put an end to the sufferings of the Palestinians and to attain a comprehensive settlement of the Middle East conflict. Such a settlement should take due account of the need to realize the inalienable rights of the Arab people of Palestine, including the right to self-determination and the creation of their own independent State in their homeland. The Israeli policy of aggression and territorial expansionism is the main impediment to the realization of this postulate. It manifests itself in disregard of United Nations resolutions and violation of the norms of international law. The attainment of such a settlement is hampered by attempts at partial solutions which are more in the interests of imperialism than of the Arab nations and contribute to the aggravation of tension in that region. The international community should intensify its efforts to overcome the impediments and bring about the convening of a Middle East peace conference with the participation of all parties concerned, including the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) as the sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people. The PLO, as an authentic exponent of the sovereign will of the entire Arab people of Palestine, has to play a major role in the attainment of such a solution. We wish it to be able to continue its active and effective struggle in the name of the well-being of the Palestinian people for the sake of the unity of the Arab world and peace and progress throughout the world.
On behalf of the people of Poland and the highest authorities of the Polish People's Republic, and on my own behalf, I should like to convey through you to the heroic people of Palestine best wishes for steadfastness and every success in your ;just and fair struggle. We are convinced that despite their painful experience the Palestine Liberation Organization, true to the ideals of the Palestinian revolution, will persevere in consistently leading the Palestinian people to final victory.
Having committed the most abhorrent aggression against the Palestinian people and expelled them from their land, usurping their territory and their legitimate rights, and having pursued that aggression beyond those borders into other Arab territories, committing crimes the world has unanimously agreed exceed all earlier forms and manifestations of barbarism and are against all divine tenets of religion, the rule of law and international morality and ideals, Israel has flouted the international community and United Nations resolutions and undermined the status and respect of this world body.
These are facts that are unanimously recognized by world public opinion, which views the question of Palestine as the crux of the crisis in the Middle East and the focal point of the problems in that region and considers it a matter of international concern. The comprehensive solution of that problem entails the return to the Palestinian people of their full, legitimate rights - the key to peace in the region and the only way to settle this question. The international community is fully convinced that unless such a solution is brought about Israel will feel free to continue implementing its expansionist policy against its Arab neighbours and to threaten peace and security in this region and throughout the world.
This has been proved by the actions taken by Israel last year in its invasion of Lebanon and the heinous bloodbath and slaughter it committed and is continuing to commit in that country against innocent and unarmed Lebanese and Palestinians, as well as by its refusal to implement the Security Council resolution calling for its unconditional withdrawal from that country. Nevertheless, the international community has failed to take any effective steps to deter Israel and refuses to apply the provisions of the United Nations Charter stipulating the deterrent action to be taken and setting forth the means to implement it. The Arab nation has made every possible effort to achieve a durable and lasting peace in the region and proposed to that effect a peace plan agreed upon at the Conference held in November last year. That plan was welcomed internationally because it was based on international law and the provisions of the United Nations Charter and pertinent resolutions. Israel, however, has blatantly continued its aggression, placing obstacles in the way of the implementation of that plan.
The Security Council, first and foremost its five permanent members, bears the primary responsibility for this ongoing and historically unprecedented international tragedy, since it has been entrusted with defending international legitimacy and seeing to it that the rule of law prevails in international relations. The Arab nation calls upon the peoples and leaders of the world to intensify their efforts to force those countries to shoulder their responsibilities and to meet the hopes of the international community for peace rather than continue the present confrontation which destabilizes the region and hinders all efforts towards development and prosperity. It is incumbent upon the Council to adopt a new method to face the aggressive intentions of Israel and to take effective steps to bring about a just and comprehensive solution to the question of Palestine guaranteeing the establishment of peace in the whole of the Middle East, a region so important for international peace and security.
On this International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, the Committee, which is meeting under the auspices of the United Nations, the guarantor of world security, is called upon to continue its efforts aimed at making such solidarity a reality. Qatar is at one with the question of Palestine, since it is a question of the Arab nation of which we are a part, We should like to pay a tribute to the Committee for the very valuable efforts it is undertaking in support of the heroic people of Palestine in their struggle to recover their full rights and dignity.
This year the manifestation of solidarity with the Palestinian people is taking place under extremely complex and contradictory circumstances of tension amongst States and deterioration in the international climate.
The situation continues tense in the Middle East because of the fact that no strides have been made towards settling the question of the Palestinian people and because it has not proven possible to set in train a broad-based and viable process of negotiations likely to lead to a comprehensive settlement of the conflict in that area and to bringing about a just and lasting peace in that strife-torn part of the world. This has in large measure contributed to the worsening of the international political climate. At the same time, the serious situation in Lebanon resulting first and foremost from military intervention, the retention of troops by Israel on that country's territory and the escalation of confrontation in Lebanon has brought a powerfully negative influence to bear.
One may quite rightly assert that the turn of events for the worse in the Middle East once again shows very clearly that the only path towards resolving the problems afflicting that region is that of a political solution, dialogue and direct negotiations, however difficult they may be.
The situation as it has evolved has driven home still more forcefully the reality that it is the question of the Palestinian people which constitutes the central issue and that failing its settlement a comprehensive, just and lasting peace in the area cannot be brought about. This requires Israel's withdrawal from the Arab territories occupied as a result of the 1967 war, the settlement of the question of the Palestinian people, while ensuring their right to self-determination and to the establishment of their own independent State, and guaranteeing the independence and the sovereignty of all States in that part of the world.
I should like to take this opportunity to emphasize in particular my conviction that the comprehensive solution of the problem of the Palestinian people - recognition of and respect for its inalienable rights - must lead to the realization of its deep aspirations: namely, the establishment of its own independent State, where it can concentrate its efforts for development, progress and well-being. In the Middle East there is room both for n independent Palestinian State and for the State of Israel. They must, in the end, arrive at relations based on peaceful coexistence and good-neighbourliness which is fully in keeping with the interests of both peoples, of other peoples in the area and of peace and security throughout the world.
In order to achieve this fundamental goal for peace in the area, I believe it is imperative to step up political and diplomatic efforts, including within the United Nations, to bring about the convening of an international conference under the aegis and with the active participation of the Organization, in which all parties concerned would take part, including the Palestine Liberation Organization, the sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people, along with the Soviet Union, the United States of America and other countries, which can make a positive contribution to settling the Middle East conflict.
In the spirit of the relations of militant solidarity and close friendship linking the Romanian and the Palestinian peoples, I express my conviction that, through sustained efforts, the dissension that has surfaced lately within the Al-Fatah organization and the Palestinian movement in general will be overcome very shortly and resolved by the Palestinians themselves through talks in keeping with the overriding interests of the Palestinian people.
In the present international circumstances, the unity of the Palestine Liberation Organization, led by the Chairman of its Executive Committee, Yasser Arafat, represents a vital necessity for ensuring the rights of the Palestinian people to self-determination, and the creation of their own independent State in order to bring peace to the region and throughout the world.
By the same token, I feel that, in the interest of bringing about a comprehensive settlement of the situation in the Middle East, it is necessary to bring about urgently the unconditional withdrawal of Israeli troops from Lebanon and to implement a broad-based reconciliation amongst the political and social forces in Lebanon in order to ensure the independence, sovereignty, national unity and territorial integrity of that country.
On the occasion of the commemoration this year of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, I should like to stress that the Socialist Republic of Romania and the Romanian people will continue to make the fullest contribution to efforts aimed at lasting and just solutions of the Middle East question, bringing about a comprehensive peace in that part of the world, making a reality of the legitimate national rights of the friendly Palestinian people, under the leadership of the PLO, to self-determination and the establishment of their own State.
At the same time, I express the conviction that, just as the United Nations can and must play an ever-more active role in efforts to resolve the Middle East conflict, the question of the Palestinian people and, in general, by political means to defuse and resolve all situations of tension and conflict between States in order to halt the worsening of the international situation, which has been aggravated over the last several days by the start of delivery and deployment in Europe of new intermediate-range missiles, it can and must also act more forcefully to achieve the triumph of the overall policy of peace, security, disarmament, co-operation and respect for the national independence of all peoples the world over.
I wish to express to Your Excellency the deep appreciation of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for the constructive role that this Committee is playing under your Chairmanship and for the sincere efforts of all its dedicated members in supporting the rights of the Palestinian people. I also take this opportunity to reaffirm the Saudi Arabian people's firm determination wholeheartedly to support the Palestinian people in regaining their legitimate rights, including the right to return to their homeland, the right to self-determination and to the establishment of a State of their own on their national soil.
The world is commemorating the international Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People when that people is living under circumstances that could, at the very least, be described as inhuman. The Palestinian people are exposed to the ugliest manifestations of persecution and oppression by the Zionist entity, which is supported by a world super-Power. That super-Power is called upon to fulfil the aspirations of the lesser developed countries by promoting justice and equality among nations, in order to be consistent with the principles which it claims form the basis of its international relations.
Moreover, it is most regrettable that the United Nations has until now been unable to implement the just resolutions adopted by the overwhelming consensus of the international community for the purpose of eliminating the widespread injustice and oppression that continues to be meted out by the Zionist entity against the Palestinian people. Such implementation would take the form of granting the Palestinian people the most basic right enjoyed by all other peoples of the world, namely, the right to live in an independent State in their own homeland. The fundamental features of that homeland are now calculatedly being obliterated by the Zionist entity in favour of an ugly new phase through confiscation of the historic land of the Palestinians and the establishment of settlements for Jewish immigrants brought to Israel from all corners of the world to replace the original owners of the land.
The international community is required today to put an end to the ever more aggressive and brutal Zionist practices. Those practices have been evidenced most recently in the genocidal war waged by the Israeli army on Lebanese soil, where Lebanese and Palestinian women and children and the elderly were killed and where the army indiscriminately destroyed civilian neighbourhoods and institutions, establishing some of the most horrendous detention camps known to history. In so doing, in defiance of the numerous appeals for an end to this ongoing human tragedy, the Zionists have gone beyond conceit and arrogance.
This persistence of the Israeli entity in intensifying its aggressive practices designed to carry out its expansionist ambitions and to concentrate its growing colonial settlements on Arab lands and Islamic holy places inevitably sets international peace and security, on a very precarious course.
Therefore, it is the duty of the international community to strengthen its solidarity with the Palestinian people, to defuse Israel's expansionist and aggressive designs and to address Israel's persistent defiance of the expressed will of the international community and of all human values.
Here I wish to make it clear that Saudi Arabia is convinced that a comprehensive and just peace in the Middle East, to which all Arab countries aspire and which is supported by all peace-loving countries in the world, cannot be achieved without Israel's withdrawal from all the territories it has forcibly occupied, including Jerusalem, and without the Palestinian people enjoying the right to self-determination and sovereignty in their own State.
The Arab States and the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), the legitimate representative of the Palestinian people, have both reiterated their desire to reach a just and honourable solution to the Palestinian problem. This was demonstrated by the clear positions of the Arabs formulated in the Arab peace proposal adopted by the Twelfth Arab Summit Conference of States, held in Fez in September 1982. That proposal is based on United Nations resolutions and on international law. The Arab nations had hoped that that proposal would open up a new horizon for more effective action by the international community within the framework of international law and would at least ensure the return of Al-Quds and the occupied Palestinian and Arab territories.
May I also take this opportunity to express the gratitude and appreciation of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for the increasing support that the Palestinian people, legitimately represented by the PLO, are receiving from friendly States in all fields of United Nations activities. I hope this International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People will be an occasion for peace-loving nations and States to demonstrate their solidarity in order to enable all peoples subjected to foreign domination to exercise their rights to self-determination, freedom and independence, in accordance with the United Nations Charter.
The recent events in Lebanon make it incumbent upon all of us urgently to commit ourselves to intensifying our efforts in the search for a settlement in accordance with the relevant principles of the United Nations. For our part, we remain determined to spare no effort in contributing to the realization of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people as formulated by this Committee, to which we should like to pay a tribute for the serious and useful work it has performed since its creation. The Government and people of Senegal, and I personally, urge you to persevere in your efforts and assure you of our full co-operation.
To the brother people of Palestine and to their legitimate representative, the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), we wish full success in their struggle for independence and freedom.
The Palestinian people had but brief respite from the horrors and brutality of those unjust forces, which denied to them their basic right to return to their homeland. Indeed, the call for a comprehensive, just and lasting peace in the Middle East is for a restoration to the Palestinian people of their inalienable rights, including the right to self-determination and return to their homeland. Today, this question remains as urgent as ever, demanding an early and acceptable solution.
My Government and the people of my country share the outrage and horror of the world community at the continued repression of the Palestinian people. Our solidarity with their cause remains as firm as ever.
The Palestinian question has a long record in this international Organization. This record proves that since its inception Israel has been linked with usurpation, aggression and expansion with regard to the Arab territories, has been characterized by its challenge of international public opinion, the flouting of United Nations resolutions and the unleashing of a lengthy series of barbaric acts of aggression against the Arab States and has bluntly stated its expansionist designs. The most recent examples of Israel's policy were its declarations of annexation of Jerusalem and the Golan Heights and its invasion of Lebanon, which was accompanied by death and destruction, and other attempts to undermine Lebanon's independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity through an agreement which the United States of America and Israel sought to impose on Lebanon.
Israel bears full responsibility for the plight of the Arab Palestinian people and for the expulsion of millions of Arabs from their homes in Palestine, the Golan Heights and Lebanon. In addition, it practices a racist policy, in all its forms, against the Arab citizens in the occupied Arab territories. By the sum total of its practices it has thus created an explosive situation in the region with serious repercussions for peace and security in the world. Israel would not be able to continue its aggressive and expansionist policies and to flout international public opinion, violating resolutions of the international Organization, without the support of world imperialism, led by the united States of America, which has encouraged Israel and supported it in various ways.
It is recognized that the Palestinian question is at the core of the conflict in our region; it is the cause of the whole Arab nation, and, hence, our cause in Syria and the focal point of our struggle. Therefore, our relationship with the Palestinian cause goes deeper than that of mere solidarity, for it is a relationship with a common cause and destiny owing to the national links that bind us to the Arab Palestinian people and because Israel's ambitions are not limited to the borders of Palestine but extend beyond to other parts of the Arab nation on which Israel envisages creating a Greater Israel extending from the Nile to the Euphrates, as was proclaimed by the Zionist leaders.
We in Syria are determined to continue our struggle in support of the Palestinian cause, since it is based on principle and justice and is the central cause of the Arab nation.
I wish to reiterate our congratulations to your Committee and to wish you all success in your endeavours, in the hope that your Committee's meetings will add to the support for the rights of the Palestinian people and contribute to achieving the just peace to which we all aspire and work towards.
I had hoped that the situation in the Middle East might by now have progressed to a stage of greater detente, since the peace overtures we have been witnessing during the past few years seemed to justify such hopes. The present-day situation, however, is by no means what we had expected. In spite of a determined desire for peace, as expressed by the Arabs and Palestinians in the First Plan, we observe further complexities and ramifications in the Middle East conflict.
The Palestinian revolution, which has time and again confirmed the readiness of the Palestinian people for a peaceful settlement, is now going through a critical period which might be conducive to changing its approach. Unfortunately, the international community has not been directly involved in the events and has not expressed any real interest in the core of the problem.
These serious and painful changes at this very time are the natural result of the intransigent and inflexible position of Israel vis-à-vis the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people and the will for peace in the region. This has been clearly demonstrated by Israel's perpetuation of its settlements policy in occupied Arab territories, on the one hand, and its continued occupation of southern Lebanon and undermining of Lebanese unity, on the other.
Following the painful events in Lebanon in 1982, we expected the world to take a firm position - since it is responsible for the Palestinian tragedy - with regard to these Israeli policies and continue assisting the Palestinian people to achieving its legitimate rights.
However, the world has refrained from saying anything with regard to the Zionists, who since 1948 have continued to foment wars to divert the world's attention from the core of the problem and the dispute. Therefore the Palestinian cause, even though its solution was at hand, returned to the shadows and the Palestinian people found themselves the victim of further repression by Israel and continued lack of interest on the part of the international community.
The time has come for the international community to take cognizance of the fact that the Palestinian generations brought up in refugee camps have lost patience in this tragic situation and will be compelled to defend themselves by resorting to force since peaceful means have been of no avail.
We must recognize that peace in the Middle East would foster the achievement of peace throughout the world and, therefore, peace in that region is our responsibility. This awareness requires that we put aside any circumstantial approach and tackle the problem at its roots. I hope that the Special Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People will intensify its efforts towards achieving this goal, so as to put an end to the Palestinian tragedy and close off all avenues that might lead to the recurrence of such a tragedy in future.
I should like to address to you personally and to the members of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People our thanks for your efforts in support of the Palestinian people, who are struggling for the attainment of their national aspirations. I should like to express our appreciation for the lofty task you have undertaken in spite of the difficulties and obstacles Israel has placed in the path of its accomplishment.
The choice of 29 November of each year as an International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People reflects the determination of the United Nations to render justice to that people, who have seen their land usurped through the implementation of the imperialist plans that resulted in the establishment of Israel, and the dispersal of the Palestinian people. From 29 November 1947 to this day the Palestinian people have continued to suffer while new immigrants settle daily on their land to usurp whatever is left of it.
The sufferings of the Palestinians are not confined to the usurpation of half their land in 1947 and the dispersal of the majority outside of Palestine, or to the confiscation of their homes and property, or to the confiscation of the remainder of Palestine in 1967 and the expulsion of another part of that people, or to other violations of human rights, including murder, imprisonment and torture, the taking over of water resources and the establishment of Israeli settlements on lands belonging to the Palestinian people. All this has not been enough for Israel: it continues to oppress the refugees in their camps in southern Lebanon and to bombard them in Beirut in order to bring about their total extermination; also, the bloodbaths Israel and its agents have committed in Sabra and Shatila are only another in the vicious series of Israeli terrorist acts that the Palestinian people have suffered since 1948.
We regret in this regard that certain States still object to the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people and continue to support Israel militarily and economically, financially and politically. Without such support this aggressive State could not have continued its expansionist and aggressive policies, thus flouting the United Nations resolutions concerning the Palestinian question.
We urge the international community to continue supporting the struggle of the Palestinian people, under the leadership of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), its sole and legitimate representative, until it recovers all of its usurped rights and achieves its national aspirations.
The United Arab Emirates expresses its deep regret with regard to the very trying phase the Palestinian revolution is now experiencing. This revolution was and continues to be cherished by all Arabs and all peace-loving countries of the world. Therefore, we call on all Palestinian parties to refrain from resifting to force in solving problems and to become more responsible. All should rally round the PLO before these differences affect the Palestinian cause. We call upon the Palestinian leadership to work towards settling its problems through open democratic dialogue in order to put the Palestinian cause on the right path to the achievement of its objective in recovering all the rights of the Palestinian people and establishing an independent Palestinian State in Palestine.
In conclusion, I wish to reaffirm that we in the United Arab Emirates will do everything possible in support of the Palestinian people and provide it with all assistance for the recovery of its rights.
Together with progressive mankind the Vietnamese people warmly welcome the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People and consider it a great source of encouragement for and support to the people who have suffered numerous hardships and sacrifices but are staunchly and valiantly struggling against the occupation of the Zionist Israeli aggressors. I avail myself of the opportunity to reaffirm the consistent and resolute support of the people and the Government of the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam to the Palestinian people and their sole and legitimate representative, the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), in their just and unfailingly victorious struggle for their sacred and inalienable national rights, including the right to self-determination and the right to return home and to establish an independent and sovereign Palestinian State.
At present, while the American imperialists and Israeli aggressors are seeking every means to divide, isolate and weaken the resistance of the Palestinian people, denying the role of the PLO and imposing a solution which runs counter to the interests of the Palestinian and Arab peoples, we consider more than ever before that peace- and justice-loving forces throughout the world should strengthen their solidarity, support and assistance for the struggle of the Palestinian and Arab peoples against the interference and aggression of the American imperialists in the Middle East, for the peace, independence and security of nations in the region and in the world.
Please accept my wishes of good health and the reassurances of my high consideration.
Israel's flouting of United Nations resolutions pertaining to the question of Palestine and its disregard of the rights of the Palestinian people in practising its aggressive, expansionist policy against the Arab countries resulting in continuous tension in the Middle East have adversely affected peace in the region and in the world.
It is very clear now that peace cannot be maintained without the complete withdrawal of Israel from the occupied Arab territories and without finding a solution to the Palestinian question, which is considered the core of the problem of the Middle East, and recognizing the rights of the Palestinian people to return to their homeland, to self-determination and the establishment of an independent State, under the leadership of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), their sole legitimate representative.
Undoubtedly, the continuation of that arrogant Israeli position, supported by the United States of America and its allies, against the rights of the Palestinian people and Israel's determination to pursue its occupation of Arab territories are conducive to further dangers in the Middle East and widely threaten peace there and in neighbouring regions, especially since Israel has been linked to a series of manoeuvres in the region, examples of which are Israel's invasion of Lebanon, the oppression of the Palestinian and Lebanese peoples by United States and French military forces as part of multinational forces in Lebanon and other aggressive actions carried out against the innocent Lebanese and Palestinian peoples and the neighbouring Arab States.
In its highly important task at this very critical juncture in the Middle East it is incumbent upon the United Nations to continue all efforts to compel Israel to implement United Nations resolutions calling for withdrawal from the occupied Arab territories and recognizing the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, since this is a prerequisite for the establishment of security and stability in the Middle East, enabling all, the States and peoples of that region to live in peace, including the independent Palestinian State.
The Government of Democratic Yemen commends your lofty efforts in this direction and on this International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People reconfirms its intention to maintain its principled position at the side of the Palestinian People, under the leadership of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), to oppose all plans and designs aimed at depriving them of their legitimate rights to return to their homeland and to establish their own independent State.
We commend the United Nations for setting aside every year, this International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People to support their just cause, which has been considered as the most important cause of liberation internationally for the past 36 years, and which even today remains a nightmare for all those who strive for justice and peace for mankind as a whole and who are dedicated to self-determination and freedom for peoples still under the yoke of imperialism, colonialism, oppression, exploitation and racism.
The imperialist countries have created this situation of the Palestinian people, causing them to be evicted from their land and denying their rights.
Nevertheless, the United Nations, which truly represents the will of the international community, has not been remiss in assuming its responsibilities with regard to the Palestinian people. This Organization has adopted dozens of resolutions confirming the rights of the Palestinian people, including their legitimate rights to return to their homeland, to self-determination and to the establishment of their own independent State on their homeland.
However, Israel has refused to implement those resolution, challenging the will of the international community with unprecedented arrogance. This makes the achievement of peace in the Middle East a very difficult matter, and it obliges the United Nations to take practical steps to implement its resolutions. Undoubtedly, the Geneva Conference was an important landmark in support of the struggle of the Palestinian people which confirms their inalienable rights. Consequently, the States Members of this Organization should assume their responsibilities and make greater efforts in order to put an end to the continuous Israeli aggression against the Palestinian people and to check the settlement and colonialist policies adopted by Israel in the occupied Arab territories.
While paying a tribute to this worthy gathering, we of the Yemen Arab Republic wish to renew our deep conviction -- the validity of which has been proven by events - that a just and durable peace in the Middle East can be achieved only by the withdrawal of Israel from all occupied Arab territories, including Jerusalem, and by allowing the Palestinian people to return to their homes, to exercise their right to self-determination and to establish an independent State on their own soil, under the leadership of their sole legitimate representative, the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO). I wish also to express our deep appreciation for the efforts you are making, through the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, in the service of the principles of this Organization and of international peace and security.
I convey my heartiest congratulations to you, your staff and all those who are participating sincerely in the struggle of the Palestinian people to enjoy the same freedom, dignity and independence other peoples of the world do, so that peace and security can return to this very critical region of the world.
On the occasion of the Day of International Solidarity with the Palestinian People, I should like to reiterate, on behalf of the Presidency of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Yugoslavia's full solidarity with and support for the just struggle of the Palestinian people under the leadership of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO).
Although the legitimate national rights of the Palestinian people have been confirmed in numerous resolutions of the General Assembly and the Security Council of the United Nations, as well as at the Summit Conferences and other meetings of non-aligned countries, no resolute action has been taken, and the Palestinian people, and its sole and legitimate representative, the PLO, have been brought into an even more difficult position by the latest developments in the Middle East and Lebanon in particular. The international community cannot acquiesce in the fact that, despite the heroic struggle of the Palestinian people for the realization of its inalienable national rights, it is still exposed to the most brutal acts of colonization, expulsion and even extermination.
The continued aggressive and expansionist policy of Israel is the main cause of the suffering and tribulations of the courageous Palestinian people. Due to such a policy, this region has been turned into the most dangerous focal point of crisis in the world, with far-ranging threats to peace and security not only in the region but also beyond it.
We firmly believe that there can be no Middle East settlement without the realization of the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people to return to their homes, to self-determination, independence and the establishment of its own national State, without Israel's withdrawal from all Palestinian and Arab territories occupied since dune 1967 and without ensuring the right to independence and safe development of all countries and peoples of the region.
Yugoslavia, along with other non-aligned countries, has always urged that solutions be sought to this and other pressing international problems within the framework of the United Nations. In these trying days for the Palestinian people, it is necessary for the United Nations and the entire international community immediately to intensify their efforts and take every measure to make Israel, once and for all, comply with the decisions of the United Nations General Assembly and the Security Council.
The armed attacks against the PLO forces loyal to their legitimate leadership, causing heavy loss of human life and extensive material destruction, are viewed here in Yugoslavia with deep concern and regret. These attacks are aimed at breaking the PLO and directly weakening the struggle of the Palestinians and all other Arabs for the exercise of their legitimate rights. The current developments are all working in favour of Israel, which is trying to eliminate the PLO as an independent factor militarily and politically and to prevent the strengthening of Arab solidarity and preserve the positions acquired by aggression, expansionism and the policy of faits accomplis.
Therefore, it is necessary that urgent steps be taken without delay, primarily by the Arab countries, with a view to ending the fratricidal conflict, resolving the controversial issues by political means, renewing PLO unity and maintaining its independent and equal position in the solution of the Palestinian question. The current efforts of Yugoslavia and other members of the Committee of eight non-aligned countries on Palestine are being made precisely to that effect. This is yet further testimony that the movement of non-aligned countries is the strongest and broadest bulwark of the struggle for freedom and independence.
Expressing its solidarity with the Palestinian people in these difficult times, the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia will continue to extend its wholehearted support for the just struggle of the Palestinian people for the attainment of full independence and freedom.
We recognize that the service you are rendering to promote the cause of the Palestinian people is as selfless as it is priceless. We commend you most highly and we have no doubt that your efforts will sooner or later be crowned with success.
Your solemn meeting to commemorate the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People is taking place at a critical time in the history of the Middle East. The situation in the Middle East is more polarized than ever before and its solution remains as elusive as ever. The Middle East remains one of the most explosive areas of the world, precisely due to Israel's intransigence and its policies of aggression, occupation and destabilization against its neighbours and, above all, because of its denial to the Palestinian people of their inalienable right to the principle of self-determination.
The International, Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People evokes a special feeling of camaraderie in Zambia with the Palestinian people, because of the existence of racist South Africa, whose policies of apartheid, aggression, occupation and destabilization of its neighbours can be equalled only to that of Israel. We therefore salute the gallant people of Palestine for waging an indomitable struggle against Israeli policies and practices. We commend them highly for their undaunted bravery in facing the ruthless Israeli military machine, which is committed to the extermination of the Palestinian people. The determination of the people of Palestine to struggle to the bitter end for their inalienable rights has always been a source of admiration and support from the people of Zambia. Consequently, our support for the people of Palestine is an integral part of Zambia's foreign policy.
Zambia attaches great importance to this commemorative occasion, whose import it is to reawaken the international conscience to the ominous plight in Diaspora to the people of Palestine. It is also the import of this occasion to provide a focal point for the meeting of like-minded people to address a common problem so that together they can rally their invaluable support to the tormented people of Palestine. It also serves as a timely reminder of the responsibilities the United Nations has vis-à-vis the resolution of this protracted problem, which has been on the agenda of the United Nations since its inception nearly 40 years ago.
Zambia reiterates its well-known view that the question of Palestine is the core of the Middle East problem and that Israel's policies and practices are the source of the problem. In order to resolve the Palestinian issue conclusively, Israel must recognize the inalienable rights of the Palestinians and withdraw from all Arab territories occupied since 1967. Any other actions short of recognition of the rights of the Palestinian people and the unconditional withdrawal from Arab territories are no more than diversionary manoeuvres by Israel and will not bring about lasting peace in the region.
I reaffirm Zambia's commitment to the Palestinian cause and wish to express our unflinching solidarity with the people of Palestine. We share their aspiration to regain their homeland.
This year the world progressive and democratic community will observe this Day of Solidarity with the just cause of the fighting people of Palestine at a time of great international tension and complexity, caused by the adventurist and militaristic policy of the United States and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. The situation in the Middle East has also worsened as a result of the aggressive militaristic policy of the United States, after it had become Israel's accomplice in its aggression against the Arab States. The United States has become a direct and active participant in that aggression and is already preparing new operations on a wider scale against the progressive national forces in Lebanon, against the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), the Syrian Arab Republic and other Arab countries. The United States is making major efforts to extend its military presence with the aim of imposing its will upon the Arab peoples, including the Arab people of Palestine.
In this serious political and military situation in the Middle East, the primary necessity is to strengthen the unity of all the elements of the Arab liberation movement and effectively to check the designs of imperialism and zionism. An important role in this respect can be played by the Palestinian resistance movement and its political vanguard, the PLO, the sole, legitimate representative of the Arab people of Palestine, whose international prestige has considerably increased in recent years.
We are convinced that in this situation the necessary efforts will be made by all parties concerned with a view to solving the differences that have emerged in recent months within the PLO and that have developed, unfortunately, into fratricidal confrontation, in order to restore unity among all the elements of the Palestinian revolution within the framework of the PLO and to strengthen the latter's unity of action with those Arab States that are firmly opposed to Israeli aggression and with all progressive and anti-imperialist forces in the Arab countries and throughout the world.
We hold in high esteem the valiant struggle of the Arab people of Palestine, together with the other patriotic and progressive forces in the Arab world against the policy of separate deals and the American-Israeli accords directed against the Arab peoples. Our position of principle on the achievement of a just and lasting peace in the Middle East remains unchanged. We wholly support the just cause of the Arab peoples and the legitimate aspiration of the Arab people of Palestine for their own State.
I take this occasion to express our full solidarity with the friendly Arab people of Palestine and to wish their fighting vanguard - the Palestine Liberation Organization - ever greater success in the struggle against imperialism, zionism and reaction for the creation of an independent and democratic free State of Palestine and for the establishment of a just and lasting peace in the Middle East.