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19 April 1950

Original: English


Held at the Palais des Nations, Geneva, on
Wednesday, 19 April 1950, at 12.30 p.m.

Mr. Palmer (United States)Chairman
Mr. de Boisanger (France)
Mr. Eralp* (Turkey)
Mr. de AzcaratePrincipal Secretary

* Alternate

Question of recommending to the Governments represented on the Commission that they approach the Government of the State of Israel

The CHAIRMAN requested Mr. de Boisanger, the retiring Chairman, to suggest what further action shall be taken with regard to the Commission’s proposals, in the light of the information he had gathered in the course of his conversations with the Governments of the parties concerned.

Mr. de BOISANGER (France) said that the previous day the Principal Secretary had handed to Mr. Kahany, a note summarizing the reply of the Arab States to the Commission’s proposals as Communicated to him during his visit to Cairo. The Principal Secretary, when delivering the note, which was in response to a wish expressed by the Israeli Foreign Minister, Mr. Sharett, had added that the information it contained was addressed to the Minister privately and that the Commission would expect that any reply it might receive from the Israeli Government would contain no mention of the Arab reply.

During the conversations he had had in Israel, he had pressed for an affirmative and unconditional reply to the Commission’s proposals. He had declared that, while the Commission foresaw difficulties on the part of the Arab Governments who had hitherto shown themselves unwilling to negotiate with Israel, it had every reason for hoping that Israel, on the other hand, would signify its acceptance in principle of the proposals, in view of the fact that the mediation proposed in the Commission’s memorandum would be exercised only with the greatest discretion and would take the form of flexible suggestions as to possible solutions to outstanding questions. He had at the same time suggested to the Israeli Minister that if the latter could announce his acceptance forthwith, the Commission would find itself in a much better position for obtaining a favourable reply from the Arab States.

As the Commission was well aware, the Israeli Minister had not replied to its proposals and had done no more than recognize that they contained constructive elements.

It was however beyond doubt that, should the Israeli Government accept the Commission’s proposals in principle, even while reserving the details of implementation for later discussion, the Commission would be able to point out to the Arab States that the provisions of the relevant General Assembly resolutions would be faithfully observed by the Commission as a matter of course and that there was nothing to prevent their Governments’ sending representatives to participate as soon as possible in the work of the mixed committees to be set up.

That being so, it seemed that the members of the Commission might recommend to their respective Governments that they instruct their diplomatic representatives in Tel Aviv to undertake parallel approaches to the Israeli Government requesting it to signify its immediate and complete acceptance in principle of the Commission’s proposals and to send a delegation to Geneva. Such a step, which would be a confidential one, should be carried out forthwith. The insistence of the three powers could not be taken amiss by the State of Israel, since the latter already knew that the Commission’s proposals had the support of the three Governments represented. The point of such a step was to prevent the Israeli Government starting a controversy by publishing rejoinders to the Arab reply.

He for his part proposed, with the agreement of the Commission, to send his Government a telegram to that effect and, later, to support his proposal in person during a forthcoming visit to Paris.

The CHAIRMAN thought that all three members of the Commission recognised the desirability of a favourable reply from the State of Israel in the interests both of the Commission and of the Israeli Government itself. Such a reply would enable the Commission to go ahead with its work and elaborate a basis for discussion with the other parties concerned. It had been useful to learn Mr. de Boisanger’s opinion based as it was on recent conversations with the leading figures in the Israeli Government.

He himself was prepared to send a telegram on the same lines to Washington but was not certain that the United States Government would give instructions for the approach to be made in Tel Aviv. It might prefer to approach the Israeli representative in Washington.

In any case, it was essential to convey to the Israeli Government the fact that the Governments represented on the Commission considered that an opportunity offered itself for Israel to break out of the situation of stalemate and to take advantage of the assistance the Commission could render.

Mr. ERALP (Turkey) declared that he would be glad to propose a similar course of action to the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Mr. de BOISANGER (France) recognised that such an approach might just as well be effected in the capitals of the powers represented on the Commission as in Tel Aviv. In his communication to the French Government, he would suggest that the latter adopt whichever of the two procedures it considered more appropriate.

The meeting rose at 1.15 p.m.

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Démarche à obtenir l’accord d’Israël aux propositions de Commission - 144e séance de CCNUP (Genéve) - Compte rendu Français