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24 July 2008

Economic and Social Council

        Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

Economic and Social Council
2008 Substantive Session
42nd & 43rd Meetings (AM & PM)



The Economic and Social Council met today to take action on draft resolutions concerning humanitarian and disaster relief assistance, follow-up to the International Conference on Financing for Development and support for Non-Self-Governing Territories.

It also had before it today a number of reports covering several agenda items, including a report on consultations held with the Chairman of the Special Committee on the situation with regard to the Implementation of the Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples (document E/2008/47).

Under its agenda item on “Social and human rights questions”, the Council had several reports:  the Secretary-General’s report on the role of the Economic and Social Council in the integrated and coordinated implementation of the outcomes of and follow-up to the major United Nations conferences and summits, in the light of General Assembly resolutions 50/227, 52/12 B, 57/270 B and 60/265 (document A/62/89–E/2007/76); the report of the Commission for Social Development on its forty-sixth session (document E/2008/26, Supp. No. 6); the report of the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice on its seventeenth session (E/2008/30, Supp. No. 10); the report of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs on its fifty-first session (document E/2008/28, Supp. No. 8); and the Report of the International Narcotics Control Board for 2007 (document E/INCB/2007/1);

The Council was also expected to take up the report of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees containing a letter dated 29 February 2008 from the Permanent Representative of Djibouti to the United Nations addressed to the Secretary-General (document E/2008/63) and a letter dated 30 May 2008 from the Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. of the Permanent Mission of Moldova to the United Nations addressed to the Secretary-General (document E/2008/84); the report of the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights on its thirty-eighth and thirty-ninth sessions (document E/2008/22, Supp. No. 2); the report of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (document E/2008/76); the report of the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues on its seventh session (document E/2008/43, Supp. No. 23); and the report of the Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia on the economic and social repercussions of the Israeli occupation on the living conditions of the Palestinian people in the occupied Palestinian territory, including Jerusalem , and of the Arab population in the occupied Syrian Golan (document A/63/74-E/2008/13).

Action on Draft Texts under Coordination Segment


The representative of Algeria introduced draft resolution E/2008/L.26, saying that the word “mother” should be included before the word “homeland”.  The Israeli occupation of Palestinian Territory and Syrian Golan, including East Jerusalem, continued to deepen the hardships of Palestinian and Syrian peoples.  High unemployment and rampant poverty persisted, especially in the Gaza Strip.  Those and other conditions provided deplorable confirmation of the repercussions that illegal Israeli settlements continued to have on the living conditions of the Palestinians.  The report documented the negative affects that Israeli settlements in the occupied Syrian Golan had on Syrian people’s access to natural resources and social services.

While most of the 21 preambular paragraphs were similar to those in last year’s resolution, additional paragraphs had been added, notably on the continuation of illegal settlement activities.  Also added was a paragraph calling on Israel to comply with the Fourth Geneva Convention on the Protection of Civilians in Times of War.  The resolution affirmed the principle of the permanent sovereignty of peoples under foreign occupation over their natural resources, and called on Israel to restore and replace properties and land.  He looked forward to the adoption of the draft by consensus, with a strong hope that it would contribute to alleviating the suffering of Palestinians.

Malaysia, Mauritania and Indonesia joined the list of co-sponsors for the draft resolution, which will be acted on tomorrow.

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For information media • not an official record

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