Question of Palestine home
21 July 1986
Item 73 of the provisional agenda*
REPORT OF THE SPECIAL COMMITTEE TO INVESTIGATE ISRAELI
PRACTICES AFFECTING THE HUMAN RIGHTS OF THE POPULATION
OF THE OCCUPIED TERRITORIES
Report of the Secretary-General
(in pursuance of General Assembly resolution 40/161 A)
1. The present report is submitted in pursuance of General Assembly resolution 40/161 A of 16 December 1985, the operative part of which reads as follows:
The General Assembly
Israel to release all Arabs arbitrarily detained and/or imprisoned as a result of their struggle for self-determination and for the liberation of their territories;
the initial release of Ziyad Abu Eain, among others, from prison on 20 May 1985;
the Israeli subsequent arbitrary detention or imprisonment of Ziyad Abu Eain and others;
that the Government of Israel, the occupying Power, rescind its action against Ziyad Abu Eain and others and release them immediately;
the Secretary-General to report to the General Assembly as soon as possible and not later than the beginning of its forty-first session on the implementation of the present resolution."
2. On 13 February 1986, the Secretary-General addressed a note verbal to the Permanent Representative of Israel to the United Nations, in which he requested, in view of his reporting responsibility under the resolution, that the Permanent Representative inform him of any steps which the Government of Israel had taken or envisaged taking in implementation of the relevant provisions of the resolution.
3. On 2 July 1986, the Acting Permanent Representative of Israel replied as follows:
"The position of the Government of Israel on General Assembly resolution 40/161 A was set out in a statement made by Israel's representative in the Special Political Committee on 8 November 1985 (A/SPC/40/PV.27).
"Operative paragraph 1 of resolution 40/161 A 'calls upon Israel to release all Arabs arbitrarily detained and/or imprisoned as a result of their struggle for self-determination and the liberation of their territories'. As it stands, this paragraph is illogical and in direct contradiction to the very principles of the rule of law. It would have Israel release from its prisons murderers such as Samir Kuntar, a Palestinian territorist who, in 1979, burst into an apartment in Nahariya and murdered a five-year-old girl by smashing her head with a rock.
"The Government of Israel explicitly rejects this paragraph. All people imprisoned by Israel undergo a fair trial and have been proven to be criminals through a court of law. Equating them with those seeking political redress not only emphasizes the extent to which the General Assembly has fallen victim to the contorted languages of extremists, but also undermines the rule of law and justice.
"Furthermore, operative paragraph 4 of the resolution 'demands that the Government of Israel rescind its action again Ziyad Abu Eain and release [him] immediately'. Ziyad Abu Eain is a convicted murderer. He planted a bomb in the town square of Tiberias and when it exploded two children were killed and many others, including women and children were wounded. On 20 May 1985, Abu Eain was released from jail as a result of a prisoner exchange. Instead of pursuing a peaceful way of life, Abu Eain almost immediately engaged in the preparation of new criminal acts. He was arrested and indicted by Israel's Attorney-General for the following criminal acts:
"1. Organization of and participation in subversive activities.
"2. Organization of hostile propaganda and incitement to violence.
"3. Conspiracy with the intent to carry out a felony (the hijacking of a bus).
"4. Attempts to solicit and engage others in criminal acts.
"Opening arguments in Abu Eain's trial started on 26 June 1986. The results of his trial will be forwarded to you upon its completion.
"In light of these facts, Israel continues to view resolution 40/161 A as unwarranted and completely void of substance and as such should be dropped from the General Assembly's agenda."