Question of Palestine home
29 December 1995
Thursday, 30 November 1995
at 3 p.m.
SUMMARY RECORD OF THE 40TH MEETING
Mr. PETRESKI (The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia)
AGENDA ITEM 12: REPORT OF THE ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COUNCIL (
The meeting was called to order at 3.15 p.m
AGENDA ITEM 12: REPORT OF THE ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COUNCIL (
(A/C.2/50/L.3, L.4, L.10, L.13, L.37 and L.42)
Draft resolution on economic and social repercussions of the Israeli settlements on the Palestinian people in the Palestinian territory, including Jerusalem, occupied in 1967 and on the Arab population of the occupied Syrian Golan
(Nicaragua), Vice-Chairman, reporting on the informal consultations held on draft resolution A/C.2/50/L.13, said that it had not been possible to achieve consensus.
(Israel), speaking in explanation of vote before the vote, said that, in the Declaration of Principles, Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization had agreed that issues relating to permanent status would be negotiated by the parties themselves at a later stage. Israel had long advocated the principle of direct negotiation without preconditions as the only framework within which to advance peace in the Middle East. It believed that the criteria for adopting resolutions on the Middle East during the current session of the General Assembly should reflect the positive developments in the peace process and the hopes for a better future in the region. In that regard, it had urged that draft resolution A/C.2/50/L.13 should be deferred.
13. Regrettably, the draft resolution was intended to predetermine the outcome of the permanent status talks, and thus contradicted the obligations undertaken by the Palestine Liberation Organization in the Declaration of Principles and also the principle of direct negotiation without preconditions, which formed the agreed basis of the ongoing peace process. The bilateral negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians and Israel and Syria were the appropriate forums for addressing that issue. Furthermore, it called into question the inviolability of the peace process and the agreements signed by the parties.
14. Israel’s commitment to the peace process was well known. Accordingly, Israel would vote against the draft resolution.
(United States of America), speaking in explanation of vote before the vote, said that the dramatic and heartening progress in the Middle East peace process made in the past three years was the product of negotiations between the parties, who had shown courage, political will, creativity and wisdom in addressing their differences. Historic progress had occurred despite the difficulty of the issues and the opposition of those extremists who preferred yesterday’s conflict to current efforts at reconciliation.
16. The draft resolution before the Committee was flawed because it purported to deal with an issue which, in accordance with the Declaration of Principles, was to be covered in negotiations to begin not later than the third year of the interim period, or May 1996. Rather than participating in a meaningless exercise, it would be more appropriate for the General Assembly and Member States to express their strong support for the peace process by offering encouragement and support to the parties as they proceeded with their negotiations.
A recorded vote was taken
: Albania, Algeria, Andorra, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Canada, Chile, China, Cuba, Cyprus, Denmark, Ecuador, Egypt, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Guyana, Haiti, India, Indonesia, Iran (Islamic Republic of), Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kenya, Kuwait, Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Maldives, Malta, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Morocco, Myanmar, Namibia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Niger, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Portugal, Romania, Samoa, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Singapore, Slovakia, Solomon Islands, South Africa, Spain, Sudan, Suriname, Sweden, Syrian Arab Republic, Thailand, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Togo, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, United Republic of Tanzania, Venezuela, Zambia.
: Israel, United States of America.
: Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Belarus, Belize, Cambodia, Congo, Costa Rica, Côte d’Ivoire, Croatia, Czech Republic, Ethiopia, Gabon, Malawi, Marshall Islands, Micronesia (Federated States of), Mongolia, Nepal, Panama, Poland, Russian Federation, Ukraine, Uruguay.
18. Draft resolution A/C.2/50/L.13 was adopted by 91 votes to 2, with 22 abstentions.*
Mr. EL BATEL
(Libyan Arab Jamahiriya), speaking in explanation of vote, said that his delegation wished to express its reservations on all points of the text that could be taken as recognition of the state of Israel or the Middle East peace process. The only way to achieve peace was by repatriating the Palestinian people.
(Australia), speaking in explanation of vote, said that any infringement of Palestinian water rights, as mentioned in paragraph 4, was illegal, but that the matter should be resolved by negotiation.
(Islamic Republic of Iran), speaking in explanation of vote, said that while his delegation had voted in favour of the draft resolution, that should not be construed as recognition of the State of Israel.
(Observer for Palestine) said that his delegation believed that illegal settlements were a major obstacle to peace, and the mere presence of those settlements would lead to extremism and violence. Adoption of the draft resolution was certainly not a meaningless exercise since the text reaffirmed the position of the international community with regard to a dangerous element that might jeopardize the Middle East peace process.
The meeting rose at 4.35 p.m
* The delegations of Cameroon, Colombia, Honduras, Mongolia, Nigeria, Qatar, Sri Lanka and Yemen subsequently informed the Committee that they had intended to vote in favour of the draft resolution; and the delegation of Hungary that it had intended to abstain.