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Press Release
UNITED NATIONS
Department of Public Information · News Coverage Service · New York


GA/10125
20 December 2002


Fifty-seventh General Assembly
Plenary
78th Meeting (AM)

GENERAL ASSEMBLY CALLS ON ISRAEL NOT TO EXPLOIT
NATURAL RESOURCES IN OCCUPIED TERRITORIES
AS IT ADOPTS SECOND COMMITTEE TEXTS
Also Adopts Headquarters Renovation Plan, with $1.05 Billion Budget,
October 2004 Start Date, One of 48 Texts Recommended by Fifth Committee


Taking action this morning on 43 draft resolutions and 10 draft decisions recommended by its Second Committee (Economic and Financial), the General Assembly called on Israel not to exploit, cause loss or depletion of or to endanger natural resources in the occupied Palestinian and Syrian Golan territories.

Also by that resolution, the Assembly recognized the right of the Palestinian people to claim restitution arising from any exploitation, loss, depletion or damage to their natural resources.  In the only recorded action, it adopted the text by 155 votes in favour to four against (Israel, Federated States of Micronesia, Palau, United States) with 4 abstentions (Madagascar, Nauru, Tuvalu, Papua New Guinea).  (See Annex for voting details.)

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Reports of Second Committee

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The Committee's report on "Permanent sovereignty of the Palestinian people in the occupied Palestinian territory, including Jerusalem, and of the Arab population in the occupied Syrian Golan over their natural resources" (document A/57/536) contains a related draft resolution that was approved on 14 November by a recorded vote of 124 in favour to 4 against (Federated States of Micronesia, Israel, Marshall Islands, United States), with 2 abstentions (Cameroon, Papua New Guinea).

By that text, the Assembly would call on Israel not to exploit, cause loss or depletion of or endanger the natural resources in the occupied Palestinian territory, including Jerusalem, and in the occupied Syrian Golan.  By other terms, it would recognize the right of the Palestinian people to claim restitution arising from any exploitation, loss, depletion or damage to their natural resources, and express the hope that the issue would be dealt with in the framework of final status negotiations between the Palestinian and Israeli sides.

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Action on Second Committee Reports

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The Assembly then turned to the Committee's report on permanent sovereignty of the Palestinian people in the occupied Palestinian territory, including Jerusalem, and of the Arab population in the occupied Syrian Golan over their natural resources (document A/57/536), adopting a related draft resolution by a recorded vote of 155 in favour to 4 against (Israel, Federated States of Micronesia, Palau, United States) with 4 abstentions (Madagascar, Nauru, Tuvalu, Papua New Guinea).

The representative of Syria said he had voted in favour of the resolution but the vote had not been properly reflected.

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ANNEX

Vote on Permanent sovereignty over natural resources

The draft resolution on permanent sovereignty of the Palestinian people in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including Jerusalem, and of the Arab population in the Occupied Syrian Golan over their natural resources (document A/57/537) was adopted by a recorded vote of 155 in favour to 4 against, with 4 abstentions, as follows:

In favour:  Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Andorra, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belgium, Belize, Benin, Bhutan, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Canada, Cape Verde, Chile, China, Colombia, Comoros, Congo, Côte d’Ivoire, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Denmark, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, Eritrea, Estonia, Ethiopia, Fiji, Finland, France, Gabon, Gambia, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Iran, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Latvia, Lebanon, Lesotho, Libya, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Malta, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Monaco, Mongolia, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Romania, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Suriname, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Timor-Leste, Togo, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United Republic of Tanzania, Uruguay, Venezuela, Viet Nam, Yemen, Yugoslavia, Zambia, Zimbabwe.

Against:  Federated States of Micronesia, Israel, Palau, United States.

Abstaining:  Madagascar, Nauru, Papua New Guinea, Tuvalu.

Absent:  Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Costa Rica, Democratic Republic of the Congo, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Iraq, Kiribati, Liberia, Marshall Islands, Nicaragua, Niger, Republic of Moldova, Russian Federation, Rwanda, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Solomon Islands, Somalia, Syria, Tajikistan, Tonga, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Vanuatu.

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For information media - not an official record