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About the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People

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Source: Division for Palestinian Rights (DPR)
Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People (CEIRPP)
31 May 1995



May 1995


Volume XVIII, Bulletin No. 5

Contents


Page
I.
    Security Council considers the situation in the occupied territories;
    Acting Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights
    of the Palestinian People addresses Council
1
II.
    Special Committee on Israeli Practices concludes Field Mission to Egypt, Jordan and Syria
2
III.
    UNICEF Executive Board reports on assistance to Palestinian children and women
4
IV.
    Governing Council of UNEP takes note of report of Executive Director on the
    environmental situation in the occupied territories; adopts decision.
5
V.
    Text of letter addressed to the Security Council from the Islamic Group at the
    United Nations on the issue of Jerusalem
9
VI.
    Excerpts from final Communiqué and Declaration adopted at the Seventh Islamic
    Summit Conference held at Casablanca, Morocco, from 13 to 15 December 1994
9
VII.
    Non-governmental organizations: activities and information
    A. Activities of NGOs
    B. Information received from NGOs
12
16

I. SECURITY COUNCIL CONSIDERS THE SITUATION IN THE OCCUPIED TERRITORIES;
ACTING CHAIRMAN OF THE COMMITTEE ON THE EXERCISE OF THE
INALIENABLE RIGHTS OF THE PALESTINIAN PEOPLE ADDRESSES COUNCIL


In response to letters of 8 May 1995 received by the Security Council from the Permanent Representative of Morocco and the Deputy Permanent Representative of the United Arab Emirates (S/1995/366), and the letter from the Permanent Representative of Morocco (S/1995/367), the Council convened on 12 and 15 to 17 May 1995 to consider the agenda item "The situation in the occupied Arab territories".

On 12 May 1995, H.E. Mr. Ravan Farhadi, Acting Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, addressed the meeting of the Security Council on the situation of the occupied territories (S/PV.3536).

After congratulating the President of the Security Council as well as his predecessor, the Acting Chairman made the following statement:

(interpretation from French)

Draft resolution S/1995/394, which was sponsored by Botswana, Honduras, Indonesia, Nigeria, Oman and Rwanda, was endorsed by 14 states out of the 15 Security Council members. One permanent member vetoed the resolution. The draft resolution was not adopted owing to the negative vote of a permanent member.



II. SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON ISRAELI PRACTICES CONCLUDES FIELD MISSION
TO EGYPT, JORDAN AND SYRIA

The following is a press release issued by the United Nations Information Service on 25 May 1995 (HR/4172):



III. UNICEF EXECUTIVE BOARD REPORTS ON ASSISTANCE
TO PALESTINIAN CHILDREN AND WOMEN

At its second regular session held on 20 to 23 March 1995, the Executive Board of UNICEF considered a review paper entitled UNICEF Assistance to Palestinian Children and Women (E/ICEF/1995/P/L.40). The paper, which was prepared pursuant to Executive Board decision 1994/R.2/7 (E/ICEF/34, E/ICEF/13), presents background information on the work of UNICEF and other United Nations agencies in assisting Palestinian children and women in Lebanon, the Syrian Arab Republic and the West Bank and Gaza. It also lists the various programmes of cooperation in those areas and developments relating to the organization's work. The strategy for programme cooperation is presented in paragraphs 17 to 19, reproduced below.

At the annual session of the Executive Board of UNICEF, which was held from 22 to 26 May 1995, the Board approved the recommendations for programme cooperation for Palestinian children and women in Lebanon, the Syrian Arab Republic and the West Bank and Gaza. These are contained in document E/ICEF/1995/P/L.30.



IV. GOVERNING COUNCIL OF UNEP TAKES NOTE OF REPORT OF
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR ON THE ENVIRONMENTAL
SITUATION IN THE OCCUPIED TERRITORIES; ADOPTS DECISION

At the eighteenth session of the Governing Council of the United Nations Environment Programme held in Nairobi, Kenya from 15 to 26 May 1995, the Council took note of the report of the Executive Director on the environmental situation in the occupied Palestinian and other Arab territories. The text of the report is reproduced below (UNEP/GC.18/18).
"POLICY ISSUES

"The environmental situation in the occupied Palestinian
and other Arab territories

"Report of the Executive Director

"Summary

"The present report reviews the implementation of Governing Council decision 17/31 which requested the Executive Director, inter alia, to update the report on the state of the environment in the occupied Palestinian and other Arab territories and to provide the necessary technical assistance in Palestinian institutional and self-capacity-building in the field of the environment.

"Suggested action by the Governing Council

"The Governing Council may wish to adopt a decision along the following lines:

"The Governing Council,

"Recalling the decisions of the Governing Council on the environmental situation in the occupied Palestinian and other Arab territories, and relevant resolutions and decisions of the Security Council, the General Assembly and the Economic and Social Council,

"Recalling also the results of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, particularly principle 23 of the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development,

"Taking note of the Executive Director's report on the environmental situation in the occupied Palestinian and other Arab territories,

"(a) Notes with satisfaction the progress which has been made in the Middle East peace process since the last session of the Governing Council;

"(b) Welcomes the activities which the United Nations Environment Programme is undertaking within the framework of the Multilateral Working Groups of the Middle East peace talks, and requests the Executive Director to continue to intensify such support;

"(c) Expresses its concern over the continued degradation of the environmental conditions in the occupied Palestinian and other Arab territories, including those in the Palestinian National Authority, and urges the United Nations Environment Programme to take a prominent role in the activities of the Secretary-General's Special Coordinator for the Occupied Territories in order to ensure that environmental concerns are given due priority in all the cooperative programmes under the jurisdiction of his office.

"The environmental situation

"1. Since the adoption of decision 17/31 on 21 May 1993, there have been significant changes in the political situation in the Middle East. The signing of the Declaration of Principles at Oslo on 13 September 1993, the pledging of $2.3 billion on 1 October 1993 at the subsequent donors' conference and the establishment of the Palestinian National Authority in the Gaza Strip and Jericho have reflected well on the dual-track diplomacy established by the Madrid Conference, under the stewardship of the United States of America and of the Russian Federation, and with the crucial intermediary role of the Norwegian Government. Most of all, political accommodation by the Government of Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization has laid the foundation for a lasting peace in the Middle East, despite the formidable obstacles which still remain.

"2. One result of these changes is that UNEP now has access to the occupied territories and has been able to pursue the implementation of decision 17/31, even though the drastically altered circumstances have warranted a different approach. For example, significant initiatives have been taken by the World Bank, UNDP and the Government of the Netherlands in the field of the environment. The Government of Austria is assisting an environmental non-governmental organization (NGO) in the West Bank in the field of environmental data and the Government of the Netherlands has called for an environmental profile of Gaza and is planning to commence work in the West Bank later in 1995.

"3. From the reports of these various projects and programmes it is clear that serious environmental problems exist in the Gaza Strip. The influx of large numbers of refugees (575,000 out of the total population of 850,000) has led to high population densities, particularly in the refugee camps. Over the 27 years of occupation, there has been a significant degradation of the natural and human environment. Overexploitation and groundwater have led to a drop in water levels and saline intrusion in the coastal zone. Poor solid waste collection, transport and disposal systems pose a public health hazard and an environmental threat. Inadequate domestic water supplies and poor wastewater systems also threaten health.

"4. It is considered that human and animal life is directly threatened and this requires an immediate response. Elsewhere, the unsustainable use of scarce natural resources may inhibit the economic and social development of the Gaza Strip in the medium term.1

__________________________
1Gaza Environmental Profile, part one: Inventory of Resources, Palestinian Environmental Protection Authority/Euroconsult/International Water Consultants (IWACO). The Benevolent Society for the Gaza Strip, Gaza, June 1994, 60 pp.


At its meeting on 26 May 1995, the Governing Council of UNEP adopted decision 18/11 on the environmental situation in the occupied Palestinian and other Arab territories. The text is reproduced below.

"18/11. The environmental situation in the
occupied Palestinian and
other Arab territories

"The Governing Council,

"Recalling its decisions on the environmental situation in the occupied Palestinian and other Arab territories, and the relevant resolutions and decisions of the Security Council, the General Assembly and the Economic and Social Council,

"Recalling also the results of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, particularly principle 23 of the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development,

"Taking note of the Executive Director's report on the environmental situation in the occupied Palestinian and other Arab territories (UNEP/GC.18/18 and Corr.1),

"1. Welcomes the activities which the United Nations Environment Programme is undertaking within the framework of the search for a just and durable peace in the Middle East, and requests the Executive Director to continue to intensify such support;

"2. Expresses its concern over the continued degradation of the environmental conditions in the occupied Palestinian and other Arab territories, including those in the Palestinian National Authority, and urges the United Nations Environment Programme to take a prominent role in the activities of the Secretary-General's Special Coordinator in the Occupied Territories in order to ensure that environmental concerns are given due priority in all the cooperative programmes under the jurisdiction of his office;

"3. Requests the Executive Director to update the report on the environmental situation in the occupied Palestinian and other Arab territories in keeping with Governing Council decision 17/31 of 21 May 1993;

"4. Requests the Executive Director to note and implement Governing Council decision 17/13 by which she has been requested to provide technical assistance in Palestinian institutional and self-capacity-building in the field of the environment, including training in the relevant necessary fields."



V. TEXT OF LETTER ADDRESSED TO THE SECURITY COUNCIL FROM THE
ISLAMIC GROUP AT THE UNITED NATIONS ON
THE ISSUE OF JERUSALEM

The following is the text of a letter dated 8 May 1994 addressed to the President of the Security Council from the Permanent Representative of Morocco to the United Nations, in his capacity as current Chairman of the Islamic Group at the United Nations (S/1995/367).


VI. EXCERPTS FROM FINAL COMMUNIQUÉ AND DECLARATION
ADOPTED AT THE SEVENTH ISLAMIC SUMMIT CONFERENCE
HELD AT CASABLANCA, MOROCCO, FROM 13 TO 15 DECEMBER 1994


The Seventh Islamic Summit Conference (Session of Fraternity and Revival), which was hosted by His Majesty Hassan II, King of Morocco, was held in Casablanca, Morocco from 13 to 15 December 1994. The Conference coincided with the commemoration of the twenty-fifth anniversary of the founding of the Organization of the Islamic Conference. Below are excerpts from the final Communiqué and the Casablanca Declaration adopted at the Summit (A/50/85-S/1995/152).




VII. NON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS: ACTIVITIES AND INFORMATION
A. Activities of NGOs

At its 215th meeting, on 17 May 1995, the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People adopted the following programmes for two NGO meetings: the United Nations North American NGO Symposium on the Question of Palestine and the United Nations International NGO Meeting/European NGO Symposium on the Question of Palestine. The proposed programmes, which are reproduced below, were recommended by preparatory meetings held in New York from 27 to 28 February 1995.



UNITED NATIONS NORTH AMERICAN NGO SYMPOSIUM
ON THE QUESTION OF PALESTINE


19 to 21 June 1995
United Nations Headquarters
New York

Theme: The United Nations on its 50th Anniversary and the Question of Palestine

PROVISIONAL PROGRAMME

Monday, 19 June

9.00 a.m. - 10.00 a.m. Registration

10.00 a.m. - 11.00 a.m. OPENING SESSION

Statements by:

11.00 a.m. - 11.30 a.m. Introductory Overview
"Meeting UN Responsibilities for Palestine"


11.30 a.m. - 1.00 p.m. PLENARY I
"Challenges to Peace: Obstacles and Opportunities"
Discussion

1.00 p.m. - 3.00 p.m. LUNCH

3.00 p.m. - 6.00 p.m. Concurrent workshops:

NGO STRATEGY AND ACTION


Tuesday, 20 June

9.30 a.m. - 11.00 a.m. Reports from Workshop Chairs

11.00 a.m. - 1.00 p.m PLENARY II
"Working towards self-determination, promoting civil society"
Discussion

3.00 p.m. - 6.00 p.m. Concurrent workshops
Special interest groups:
"Strengthening our NGO ties: the use of electronic network"


Wednesday, 21 June

9.00 a.m. - 10.00 a.m. Workshop reports and NACC business

10.00 a.m. - 10.30 a.m. Elections

10.30 a.m. - 12.30 p.m. PLENARY III
"Continuing commitment of NGOs on the question of Palestine"


Questions and discussion

12.30 p.m. CLOSING SESSION




UNITED NATIONS INTERNATIONAL NGO MEETING/
EUROPEAN NGO SYMPOSIUM
ON THE QUESTION OF PALESTINE

29 August to 1 September 1995
Vienna International Centre, Vienna

Theme: The 50th Anniversary of the United Nations _
Palestine, NGOs and the Implementation of
United Nations Resolutions

Provisional programme

Tuesday, 29 August

8.00 a.m. - 10.00 a.m. Registration

10.00 a.m. - 11.00 a.m. OPENING SESSION

Statements by:


11.00 a.m. - 1.00 p.m. PLENARY SESSION

"United Nations 50th Anniversary and the Question of Palestine"

1.00 p.m. - 3.00 p.m. LUNCH

3.00 p.m. - 6.00 p.m. "Palestine update"

Briefings on economic, social and political conditions facing the Palestinians on the ground

-Overview
-Health
-Family re-unification
-Labour and unemployment conditions
-Education/children
-Women
-Palestinians inside Israel
-Palestinians in Lebanon


Wednesday, 30 August

10.00 a.m. - 1.00 p.m. PLENARY SESSION

"NGO networking"

To be followed by workshops on:

1. Economic development
2. Social development
3. Violation of human rights under occupation
4. Palestinians in the diaspora

1.00 p.m. - 3.00 p.m. LUNCH

3.00 p.m. - 6.00 p.m. PLENARY SESSION

"Obstacles to peace: Recommendations for action"

1. Jerusalem and settlements
2. Right to return - refugees
3. Prisoners
4. Israel's violation of its commitments under the Declaration of Principles



Thursday, 31 August

10.00 a.m. - 1.00 p.m. Building the NGO network - encouraging NGO participation

1. Palestinian/Israeli NGO cooperation
2. Interaction of national and international NGOs and the role of the NGO coordinating committees
3. NGO relations with United Nations organs

1.00 p.m. - 3.00 p.m. LUNCH

3.00 p.m. - 6.00 p.m.

4. NGOs and shaping public opinion
5. Using the "Information super highway" (set-up of information laboratory)



Friday, 1 September

10.00 a.m. - 1.00 p.m. PLENARY SESSION

"NGO strategies for action"

Defining common projects


1.00 p.m. - 3.00 p.m. LUNCH


3.00 p.m. - 6.00 p.m.
International Coordinating Committee for NGOs on the Question of Palestine - Elections
European Coordinating Committee for NGOs on the Question of Palestine - Elections

Conference statements and recommendations

CLOSING SESSION




B. Information received from NGOs

1. Middle East International, a biweekly publication, is available from P.O. Box 53365, Temple Heights Station, Washington, D.C. 20009, United States. Issue No. 500 of 12 May 1995 includes articles on Israeli land confiscation in Arab Jerusalem, reactions from Palestinians, Arab League, United States Government and significance with regard to the peace process; Yassir Arafat's rejection of a draft national reconciliation treaty with other Palestinian political groups due to the failure to include a commitment on a halt to attacks against Israel from inside the Gaza Strip; Yitzak Rabin's reactions to United States Senator Bob Dole's initiative to move the United States embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem; "moderate" Arab States' relationship with the United States in view of the perception that American evenhandedness with regard to Arab-Israeli issues is fading; Abd al-Samad Huraizat's death under Shabak custody; and the new tripartite pact between the Palestinian Authority, Israel and donor countries signed in Paris on 24 April. The issue also includes an analysis of the Declaration of Principles and the author's view of the apparent imbalances of the agreement which places the Palestinians at a serious disadvantage; the Palestinians' need for long-term aid; and "The Third Way", a modified version of the Allon plan as a basis for an Israeli settlements policy.

2. The Other Israel, a newsletter of the Council for Israeli-Palestinian Peace, available from P.O. Box 2542, Holon, Israel 58125. Issue No. 66 of May 1995 includes an article entitled "New Lebanons" wherein the author likens the Gaza Strip to South Lebanon in the sense that Rabin's failure to decide on complete withdrawal of Israeli troops from both places contributes to an untenable situation. Such a situation, in the author's view, could set the stage for a similar condition in the West Bank. It also has an article on the predicament of the Israeli government's "Dovish" wing, whose policies vis-à-vis the peace process have led, in the author's view, to a general feeling of demobilization within the peace movement. This issue also has information on the activities of various Israeli non-governmental organizations. Also included is an obituary of Matti Peled (1923-1995), Israeli general, peace activist and scholar, as well as a series of articles written as a tribute to Peled's life.

3. News From Within, a newsletter of the Alternative Information Centre, in available from P.O. Box 31417, Jerusalem (Fax 9722 253151). Issue No. 5 of May 1995 includes an analysis entitled "Dead End Leading to Explosion" by Tikva Honig-Parnass, concerning the possibility of a form of Palestinian civil war or a new type of intifadah. "Reflections from Gaza-April, 1995" by Maja are personal reflections based on the diary of a freelance journalist from the Netherlands who was based in the occupied territories for five years. The article entitled "From Leninist to NGO-style Organizations" by Adel Samara was written to initiate a debate concerning the reasons underlying the deterioration of the Palestinian left, in both the organizational and theoretical dimensions, as well as in its level of militancy. In "Neither a Samson Nor a Masada", Azmi Bishara refutes the assertion made that the phenomenon of suicide bombing is inherent in Palestinian culture.

4. Report on Israeli Settlement in the Occupied Territories, a bimonthly publication of the Foundation for Middle East Peace, is available from 555 13th Street, NW, Suite 800, Washington, D.C. 20004-1109 (Fax 202 637 5910). Issue No. 3 of May 1995 includes articles on recent developments in the occupied territories and its implications on the "final status" talks; the construction of a system of bypass roads throughout the occupied territories which, in the author's view, would be critical to the expansion and consolidation of Israel's military and civilian presence in the territories; United States Senator Jesse Helms' contention that Israeli settlements are permissible under the Fourth Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949, and on the continued oppression of Palestinians in Hebron. A section entitled "Settlement Snapshots" presents excerpts from news publications and pronouncements by various political figures on the settlement question. This issue also includes excerpts from statements made at the United Nations Security Council debate on settlement issues held on 28 February 1995.

5. The Association of Israeli-Palestinian Physicians for Human Rights (PHR) has released the following publications which are available from PHR, P.O. Box 10235, Tel Aviv 61101, Israel (Fax 972 3 566 2527). The publication entitled "Review of the Oncology and Hermatology Services in the Gaza Strip" compares the medical services for cancer patients in hospitals in Israel and the condition of similar services in the Gaza Strip, showing the dependence of such health services in Gaza on Israeli medical services; "The Health Budget for the Gaza Strip: A Precarious Situation", summarizes the actual health care budget needed to build and maintain medical care in Gaza and the problems encountered in obtaining financing which makes Gaza continually dependent on Israeli health care facilities; and "The Child Medical Care Fund" issues an urgent appeal for a number of critical medical cases involving children. PHR also issued an update on its activities during 1994-1995.

6. The Other Front, a weekly bulletin on developments in Israeli society, is available from P.O. Box 19543, Jerusalem. Issue No. 320 of 3 May 1995 includes excerpts from a recent article in Ha'aretz (20-4-95) which attacks the "new values" of Israeli society and the Zionist left; an article on the death of Abed Samad Harizat during his interrogation by the General Security Services (Shabak); an interview with IDF Commander Gabi Ophir on Israeli settlers; and on activities of Israeli non-governmental organizations. Issue No. 321 of 10 May 1995 includes articles on the Israeli Government's planned expropriation of land in East Jerusalem to build housing and the response from Arab leaders; excerpts from Haim Baram's column in Kol Ha'ir demanding the resignation of Deputy Minister Walid Tzadek (Meretz), highest ranking Palestinian Israeli in the Rabin government, for his support for Rabin's policies on settlements; activities on Israeli non-governmental organizations; proposals for a law that would guarantee compensation to encourage settlers to leave the occupied territories and move back "within the borders of the green line"; proposed new settlements; the proposal that settlers who committed military offences be tried in military courts instead of civilian courts in Israel; and plans to eliminate some interrogation methods used by the Shabak. Issue No. 322 of 17 May 1995 includes articles on Israeli left-wing criticism of the government's plan to expropriate land in East Jerusalem; speculation about Israel's existing nuclear capability; the emergence of a new independent organization - "The Third Way", which claims to be between the extremes of the left and the right; and on activities of Israeli non-governmental organizations.

7. Kav La'Oved, Workers' Hotline for the Protection of Workers' Rights, is a newsletter, which is available from 78 Allenby St., Tel Aviv, Israel (Fax 03-5173081). The May 1995 issue includes a graph illustrating quotas on Palestinian work permits; a report on the security procedures to which Palestinian workers are subjected; the effects of the Gaza-Jericho Agreement on Palestinian labour; the status of Palestinian social rights lawsuit initiated by Kav La'Oved; migrant workers and work accidents; and gas station workers' exposure to carcinogens.

8. Newsletter, published by the Center for Policy Analysis on Palestine, is available from The Jerusalem Fund, 2435 Virginia Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20037, (Fax 202 333 7742). Issue No. 3 of May 1995 includes articles on the Center's conference on an appraisal of the Palestinian Authority (PA), including a critique on its legal framework, Palestinian perceptions, dilemmas of the PA; the structure and operation of the PA in Gaza; results of a Palestinian public opinion poll on the Declaration of Principles, relations with Jordan, armed struggle, elections; briefing on Palestinian elections conducted by the International Foundation for Electoral Systems; Palestinian Christians and the need to link with other religions; as well as a list of the Center's publications.



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