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About the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People
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UNITED
NATIONS
A

        General Assembly
Distr.
GENERAL
A/AC.183/PV.148
21 January 1988

COMMITTEE ON THE EXERCISE OF THE INALIENABLE
RIGHTS OF THE PALESTINIAN PEOPLE

VERBATIM RECORD OF THE ONE HUNDRED AND,
FORTY-EIGHTH MEETING

Held at United Nations Headquarters, New York,
on Monday, 30 November 1987, at 3 p.m.

Chairman: Mr. SARRE (Senegal)

Later: Mr. ORAMAS OLIVA (Cuba) (Vice-Chairman)

INTERNATIONAL DAY OF SOLIDARITY WITH THE PALESTINIAN PEOPLE

The meeting was called to order at 3.35 p.m.

INTERNATIONAL DAY OP SOLIDARITY WITH THE PALESTINIAN PEOPLE

The CHAIRMAN (interpretation from French): This afternoon the Committee will continue its observance of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People by hearing messages, from Heads of State or Government, as well as messages from Foreign Ministers, non-governmental organizations, liberation movements and representatives of other bodies.

Mr. SALAH, (Jordan) (interpretation from Arabic): I have the honour, to read out to the Committee a message from His Majesty King Hussein of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan on the occasion of the observance of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. The message is addressed to the Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People and reads as follows:


"It is my sincere hope that the Committee will continue its worthy efforts to achieve that noble goal and that God's peace may be with you.

The CHAIRMAN (interpretation from French): I would ask Mr. Salah to express our thanks and gratitude to His Majesty King Hussein for his very sincere and heartfelt message.

Mr. SHIHABI, (Saudi Arabia)(interpretation from Arabic): I have the honour to transmit to you, Mr. Chairman, and to the other members of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People and, through you, to the international community as represented by the united Nations, the message of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Fahd Bin Abdul-Aziz al-Saud, the King of Saudi Arabia, on, the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People.

While we salute this Day in the United Nations, the message of the Custodian of the Two Shrines, King Fahd, embodying the pulse of the great heart who has lived, witnessed and participated in the cause every day in past years from a position of leadership and who has taken part in all Arab, Islamic and international efforts in support of the Arab and Islamic rights in Palestine, is a reflection of the dedication and jihad of the Custodian of the TWO Holy Shrines.

The Royal Message is addressed to the Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People and reads as follows:


The CHAIRMAN, (interpretation from French): I thank the representative of Saudi Arabia for having read out the message from His Majesty King Fahd, Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques. I would ask him to convey the Committee's thanks and gratitude to his Sovereign.

Mr. KANE (Senegal)(interpretation from French): I have the honour to read out to the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People a message from His Excellency Mr. Abdou Diouf, President of the Republic of Senegal, on the occasion of the International Day of solidarity with the Palestinian People. The President's message reads as follows:


The next speaker is the representative of Cuba, Vice-chairman of the Committee, on whom I now call.

Mr. Oramas OLIVA, (Cuba)(interpretation from Spanish): It is an honour for me to read out to you, Mr. Chairman, and to the Committee, a message from the President of the Republic of Cuba, Dr. Fidel Castro, sent on the occasion of the observance of the Day of Solidarity with the heroic Palestinian people. The message reads as follows:

"On the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian people it is an honour for me to address you this message and express the support and militant solidarity of the people and the Government of Cuba to the Palestinian people in its heroic and just struggle for the restoration of its inalienable rights under the leadership of the Palestine Liberation Organization, (PLO), its sole, legitimate representative.

"This commemoration is of special significance this year because it coincides with the fortieth anniversary of the adoption of General Assembly resolution 181 (II) of 29 November 1947 on the partition of Palestine. During these past four decades the international community, in particular the United Nations, has made energetic efforts in search of a solution to the serious Middle East, crisis, at the core of which lies the question of Palestine.

"Today more than ever requires the efforts and common action of all States truly interested in putting an end to this deplorable situation in which an occupying Power, Israel, is keeping dispersed throughout the world part of the Palestinian people, while subjugating those still living in the occupied Arab territories.

"The aggressive and interfering policy which the United States is exercising in the Middle East region through Israel, its unconditional ally, impedes any action aimed at the eradication of the hotbed of tension existing there. Contrary to the desire for peace, agreements on strategic co-operation signed between both are stimulating the Zionist expansionist, repressive and genocidal policy which the Israeli Government is conducting against the Arab people in general and against Palestine in particular.

"Because the crisis of the Middle East poses a threat to world peace, it requires priority attention. The international community must focus all its efforts towards achieving a just and comprehensive solution of this crisis, whose prerequisite must be Israel's total and unconditional withdrawal from all Palestinian and Arab territories occupied since 1967, including Jerusalem, and the Palestinian people's recovery of all its national inalienable rights, including the return to its homeland, self-determination free of external interference and the establishment of an independent and sovereign State in Palestine.


The CHAIRMAN, (interpretation from French): I thank Mr. Oramas Oliva for the message, from His Excellency Mr. Fidel Castro which again, illustrates his country's commitment to the cause of the Palestinian people. Moreover, as we know, within two weeks, in Cuba, there will be a seminar on the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people.

Mr. LI Luye, (China), (interpretation from Chinese): Allow me to read out the telegram sent by Acting Premier Li Peng of the State Council of the People's Republic of China on the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, as follows:


Mr. DOST (Afghanistan): I have the honour to read out the text of the message from Dr. Hajibullah, General Secretary of the Central Committee of the People's Democratic Party of Afghanistan and President of the Republic of Afghanistan on the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. It is as follows:
"While expressing once again its all-round support for the Palestinian brothers, the Republic of Afghanistan is confident that their cause will triumph and is convinced that they will achieve their goals. We wish prosperity and well-being to the Palestinian Arabs."

The CHAIRMAN (interpretation from Spanish): I thank the representative of Afghanistan for the message from the President of the Democratic Republic of Afghanistan he has just read out.

Mr. YUSOF (Malaysia): Mr. Chairman, I have the honour to convey to you and this distinguished gathering to commemorate the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People a message from the Prime Minister of Malaysia, the Honourable Dr. Mahathir Mohamad. The text of the message is as follows:


The CHAIRMAN, (interpretation from Spanish): I thank, the representative of Malaysia for the message from the Prime Minister of his country he has just read out to us, in which once more he expresses support for the cause of, the Palestinian people.

Mr. TURKMEN, (Turkey): Mr. Chairman, I have the honour of reading out the text of the message addressed to you from Mr. Turgut Ozal, Prime Minister of Turkey, on the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People:


I now call on Mr. Samir Mansouri, representative of the League of Arab States. Mr. MANSOURI, (League of Arab States), (interpretation from Arabic): It is a great pleasure for me to read out to the Committee the message from Secretary-General Chedli Klibi of the League of Arab States addressed to you as Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People.
Mr. BADFIWI, (Egypt) (interpretation from Arabic): It is my honour to read out the letter addressed to you, Mr. Chairman, from His Excellency, Mr. Mohammed Hosni Mubarak, President of the Arab Republic of Egypt, on the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People.
The CHAIRMAN, (interpretation from Spanish): I now call on Mr. Engin Ansay, the Observer of the Organization of the Islamic Conference.

Mr. ANSAY (Organization of the Islamic Conference): I take this opportunity to pay a tribute to the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, under, the exemplary and able guidance of Ambassador Massamba Sarre, for its tireless work and continuing efforts to achieve a solution to the problem of Palestine, in accordance with the relevant United Nations resolutions.


Mr. OTT (German Democratic Republic): I have the honour to read out the message of the Head of State of the German Democratic Republic, Erich Honaker, General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Socialist Unity Party of Germany and Chairman of the Council of State of the German Democratic Republic, addressed to the Secretary-General of the United Nations on the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. His message reads as follows:
On this day of solidarity, it is my pleasure to thank the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People for their untiring endeavours in promoting the just cause of the Palestinian people. Our particular appreciation goes to Ambassador Massamba Sarre for his dedicated and competent chairmanship.

I wish to assure you, Mr. Chairman, that the Committee, just as the United Nations as a whole, may continue to rely on the German Democratic Republic's full co-operation for a comprehensive, just and enduring settlement of the Middle East conflict where its core, the Question of Palestine, is concerned.

Mr. PBJIC (Yugoslavia): I have the great honour to read out the message of the President of the Presidency of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Mr. Lazar Mojsov, addressed to the Committee and its Chairman on the occasion of 29 November, the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian people. The message reads as follows:


Mr. MASRI (Syrian Arab Republic) (interpretation from Arabic): It gives me great pleasure to read out to the Committee the text addressed by Farouk Al-Shara, Foreign Minister of the Syrian Arab Republic, to the Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People on the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian people. It reads as follows:
Mr. HAIDBR, (Pakistan): I have the pleasure and the honour to read out a message from the President of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, His Excellency Mohammad Zia-Ul-Hag, and a message from the Prime Minister of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, His Excellency Mohammad Khan Junejo, on the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. The text of the message from the President is as follows:
Mr. ABDOUN, (Sudan): Allow me, Sir, to read out to this gathering a message from His Excellency Said Ahmed Elmirghani, Chairman of the Council of State of the Republic of Sudan, addressed to the Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People on the occasion of this Day of Solidarity. (spoke in Arabic)
The CHAIRMAN (interpretation from Spanish): I call on the representative of Tunisia, Mr. Abdelmajid Karoui.

Mr. KAROUI, (Tunisia)(interpretation from Arabic): It gives me great pleasure to read out the following message from His Excellency Zine Elabidine Ben All, President of the Republic of Tunisia, on the occasion of the commemoration of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People:


The CHAIRMAN, (interpretation from Spanish): I call on our friend -almost an institution in the United Nations - Ambassador All Alatas of Indonesia.

Mr. ALATAS, (Indonesia): On the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, I have the honour to read out to this commemorative meeting the following message from His Excellency Mr. Soeharto, President of the Republic of Indonesia:


"May God Almighty bestow His blessings and wise guidance on all of us."

The CHAIRMAN, (interpretation from Spanish): I call on Dr. O. Pasehun, the representative of Nigeria.

Mr. FASEHIN (Nigeria): It is an honour to read out to representatives gathered here the message of General Ibrahim Babangida, President and Commander-in-Chief of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. The message begins*.


The CHAIRMAN, (interpretation from Spanish): I thank the representative of Nigeria for the important message addressed to us. I ask him kindly to convey to the President and Commander-in-Chief of the Federal Republic of Nigeria our gratitude for his statement.

I now call on Dr. Donald Betz, Chairman of the International Co-ordinating Committee for Non-Governmental Organizations on the Question of Palestine.

Mr. BETZ: For the third year, in succession it is my honour and privilege to deliver this message on behalf of the International Co-ordinating Committee for Non-Governmental Organizations on the Question of Palestine. My colleagues from the International Co-ordinating Committee, (ICCP), are addressing similar gatherings at United Nations facilities today, both, in Geneva and in Vienna. I thank the Committee for this opportunity to speak on behalf of NGOs everywhere that are pursuing peace with justice in the Middle East based on the self-determination, of the Palestinian people.

This has been an extraordinary year for our work. The year 1987 had been designated by non-governmental organizations as the Year of the Palestinian People. It has been commemorated in many different ways throughout the world. From special posters to cultural exhibits, from essay contests to formal conferences, this special focus on the legacy of the Palestinian people has been taken up by hundreds of non-governmental organizations around the globe. The Co-ordinating Committee collaborated with many of these non-governmental organizations to assist them with their projects. The Co-ordinating Committee and non-governmental organizations were particularly instrumental in organizing tours of Palestinian women, first in Europe and later in North America. One of those tours is currently going on in North America as we meet. The International Co-ordinating Committee worked with non-governmental organizations in Israel and in the occupied territories to convene an important regional gathering there. This year a special meeting of European non-governmental organizations was successfully undertaken in Geneva by the ICCP and the European NGO Co-ordinating Committee.

At the centre of our efforts, at the centre of this increased co-ordination and effectiveness, has been the ICCP liaison office in Geneva. It may be recalled that we established that office some 15 months ago in an attempt to help co-ordinate NGO activities, and it has proved to be of great value to all non-governmental organizations. We must work diligently to assure that this office continues to do its work.

The ICCP United Nations co-operation in 1987 has been on many levels and taken place in many locales. It is known that the Committee initiated its initial NGO regional symposia in 1987 with the Asian meeting in New Delhi. It had been two years since the first United Nations-sponsored meeting there. Attending organizations were from India as well as from China, Mongolia, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Japan. The two-day symposium adopted a perceptive statement on the importance of peace in the Middle East and rededicated those participating to organizing the region in order to take more* effective action.

By early summer the North American regional symposium on the question of Palestine gathered together 75 organizations representing a variety of important North American constituencies. Their deliberations produced new programmes of action to tour Palestinian women through the continent and to oppose actively attempts to close the Palestinian, information office in Washington, D.C.

The emphasis at the North American meeting was on work ships, and they produced an ambitious list of proposed projects. The newly selected North American Co-ordinating Committee reflects the diversity of North American non-governmental organizations working together on this, issue. New organizations are being attracted to these efforts daily in North America. Of special note was the fact that the North American Co-ordinating Committee recently sponsored four workshops for hundreds of American high-school and grade-school teachers at a national conference, in Dallas, Texas. It was the first time that many of those teachers had ever been confronted with the question of Palestine.

The highlight of this year's NGO activities was the series of events that commenced in Geneva from 3 to 9 September. On 3 and 4 September the International Co-ordinating Committee and the European Co-ordinating Committee co-produced an important European symposium. The entire programme was designed, financed and executed by non-governmental organizations and the ICCP. The meeting was attended by 70 European organizations from all parts of Europe and the evaluations were very positive.

The ICCP co-operated with the Palestine Red Crescent Society in mounting an extensive display of Palestinian culture and crafts during and after these mentioned meetings. In addition, there was an important programme on health conditions that was attended by over 100 non-governmental organizations organized by the Palestine Red Crescent Society, and it included moving presentations by Dr. Pauline Cutting and Dr. Swee Ang, doctors who offered their services to Palestinian men, women and children in the camps of Lebanon. We all emerged from those programmes moved and more determined than ever to redouble our efforts on behalf of the people who pass unnoticed in the West.

The Co-ordinating Committee's preparations for the United Nations Fourth International Non-Governmental Organizations Meeting on the Question of Palestine also included an exhibit of contemporary Palestinian art and contemporary films on Palestine, we were attempting to present a comprehensive portrait of a vibrant, industrious people: the Palestinians. In this way the Co-ordinating Committee, its Executive Director, its members and all non-governmental organizations set the stage for the largest international conference of non-governmental organizations ever held on the question of Palestine.

Over 250 non-governmental organizations came to Geneva from all corners of the globe this past September. Among them, importantly, were 26 non-governmental organizations from Israel. A highlight of the formal sessions was the presence and comments made by the Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization, Yassir Arafat. As you know, Mr. Chairman, the large hall at the Palais des Nations was overflowing with participants, supporters and others wanting to hear Chairman Arafat. He did not disappoint them but raised many important issues that were retold and interpreted by journalists and political analysts alike. He was particularly complimentary of the work undertaken by non-governmental organizations everywhere as co-ordinated through the International Co-ordinating Committee. He found this to be a clear expression that the initiatives of the Co-ordinating Committee and the network of non-governmental organizations were recognized as central to any sustained global effort to secure just and lasting peace in the Middle East.

The Geneva meeting's Final Declaration re-emphasized the unanimous commitment to convening an international peace conference that includes the PLO as a full participant and, as outlined in General Assembly resolution 38/58 C, as the most credible avenue to any peace process, in the Middle East. The non-governmental organizations deplored the oppressive conditions that are part of the daily life of Palestinians in the occupied territories and devised fresh ideas on how to bring these matters to the attention of people and Governments of conscience. These efforts contributed to the recent decision by the European Parliament to deplore the administrative detention of Faisal Husseini of the Arab Studies Society in East Jerusalem. Our work should focus brilliant light on these and other matters of grave concern to the thousands who live under occupation or in conditions of extreme vulnerability in the camps in Lebanon.

In planning the United Nations non-governmental organization activities for the coming two years, we must strive to involve non-governmental organizations from around the globe, including those of under-represented regions such as Latin America, Oceania and Africa. Don-governmental organization meetings in Latin America and other regions are needed soon to complete these vital non-governmental organization contacts.

The outreach to new regions and the non-governmental organizations there cannot be overemphasized. Let me give an example. During 1987 the Co-ordinating Committee undertook a special mission to Japan following the Asian regional symposium. The Co-ordinating Committee delegation met with dozens of non-governmental organizations representing virtually every facet of Japanese society. The interest in the work of the United Nations and the Co-ordinating Committee on behalf of the Palestinian people was very well received. We discovered many Japanese groups labouring on this issue. Our visit was widely covered by the Japanese press and has resulted in a Japanese non-governmental organization representative being elected to the International Co-ordinating Committee at its recent session.

What we cannot overlook is the essential, human dimension of the issues before us. Beyond the resolutions, the conferences, the political manoeuvrings, are hundreds of thousands of people, Palestinian people, who consistently have been denied the fundamental right to a homeland, a passport and a recognized identity. Many have tried to ignore them, absorb them, deport them, obliterate them; but the very injustice of the issue, coupled with political and growing public moral support, has demanded that this Question, this aspiration, these people, not he forgotten. More people know about the Question of Palestine across the globe today than 10 years ago, and far more know about it than 40 years ago.

This attempt to secure a just solution to the protracted denial of Palestinian rights was dealt a sharp blow in the United States this year by the decision taken to close, or attempt to close, the Palestinian offices in Washington and Mew York. It is ironic that the method used finally to deny the American public access to the Palestinian perspective on the issue at hand included elevating the status of the Palestine Information Office to an official diplomatic entity and then shutting it down through State Department action. For a brief moment, for a few seconds perhaps, the United States Government was recognizing the PLO and the Palestinian people. It lasted just long enough to utilize existing legal regulations that justify the closure of such legations.

These blatant moves against the PLO and the Palestinians are decisively affected by current American electoral politics. They are prime matters of concern for all North American non-governmental organizations. Such action has not gone unchallenged. People in this country and in Canada are doing their best to challenge these actions. The non-governmental organization community can be a potent agent in reminding people of their responsibilities and in mobilizing them for purposeful action.

We realize that all of the actions we have undertaken would never have been launched initially without the interest, support and guidance that have been provided by this Committee and the Division since the convening of the International Conference on the Question of Palestine in 1983. We are grateful for this Committee's interest in and encouragement of our work, and we look to greater co-ordination of our efforts.

Despite the continuing obstacles deployed in our path by the formidable forces opposed to our work, it is amazing how the network has grown and how many people are aware of these global efforts. We are all learning how to become more persuasive in disseminating our message and in reaching our objectives. Co-ordination has become a prime asset.

We need no greater incentive to bolster our efforts than to recall that winter, another winter, is coming to the Palestinians living in the rubble called camps in Lebanon. The people of the occupied territories are now entering their twenty-first year of military rule with no constitutional safeguards to protect them from the imposition of arbitrary power by the military or by armed civilian occupiers, whether it be the closing of the Palestinian university, the demolition of Palestinian homes, the uprooting of Palestinian trees or the confiscation of Palestinian land, precious Palestinian land. New generations are being born into the roles of occupiers and occupied. These are not political abstractions, but people, in ever growing numbers.

The key to a successful international campaign on the question of Palestine is to focus incessantly on the people - real people, Palestinian people. Every decision-maker should be graphically reminded that people's lives are held in the balance. It is easy to justify actions that affect abstractions) it is infinitely more difficult if the problem has a child's face, if it is reflected in a mother's determination to protect her children, if it is seen in a father's demand to provide for his family in his own country, governed by laws that he or his representatives helped formulate.

The International Co-ordinating Committee and the network of non-governmental organizations are dedicated to presenting the Question of Palestine as a fundamental issue of human rights, the rights of a people, but also the rights of individual persons. We must help to set the parameters of the global agenda on this issue, not the opposition. If this can be done, perceptions will change and new coalitions of decent people, from every crevice of this earth, will shout for change, for the restoration of essential human rights. Then no power or concert of powers would be able to resist this historic demonstration of the popular will. They will yield to the universal demand to do what is decent and right.

The International Co-ordinating Committee, the Regional Co-ordinating Committees and the global network of non-governmental organizations remain dedicated to this most worthy enterprise.

The CHAIRMAN (interpretation from Spanish): I thank Mr. Betz for his important statement. I should like to say that we very much appreciate the work done by the non-governmental organizations in making the public aware of the delicate and very important subject of the Question of Palestine. We hope they will continue the important efforts they are making.


Mr. DJOODI (Algeria) (interpretation from French): I should like to read out the message of His Excellency, Mr. Chadli Bendjedid, President of the Republic of Algeria and Secretary-General of the National Liberation Front, addressed to the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, on the occasion of the International bay of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. Here is the message:
"The convening of an international peace conference on the Middle East, which has almost universal support, and was endorsed in principle at the recent summit meeting of Arab States, is a most appropriate context for a comprehensive, definitive settlement of the crisis in the Middle East, of which the Palestinian problem is the core.
Mr. SPMAIDA (Iraq) (interpretation from Arabic): It is my honour to read out the message of President Saddam Hussein, President of the Republic of Iran, on this occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People.
The CHAIRMAN, (interpretation from French): The next speaker is the representative of the Philippines, and I now call on him.

Mr. VALDERRAMA (Philippines): On this International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, I have the honour and pleasure to read out to the members of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People and to other States Members of the United Nations the following brief message from the new Secretary of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of the Philippines, His Excellency Mr. Raul S.Manglapus:


Mr. ASHEEKE, (South West Africa People's Organization, (SWAPO)) I wish first of all, on behalf of our fighting people and their vanguard movement, SWAPO of Namibia, to express our deep appreciation for the kind invitation extended to us to participate in the observance of this memorable occasion, the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People.

Let me take this opportunity also of commending the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, under the able and dedicated guidance of its Chairman, for the work it is doing in mobilizing international solidarity with and support for the just struggle of the Palestinian people.

Once again we are gathered here to mark an occasion of solidarity with the people of Palestine. It is very sad to recall that for 40 years now the question of Palestine has remained one of the most important questions on the agenda of the United Nations - a question that is still unresolved. Forty years were indeed long enough to bring peace to the oppressed people of Palestine. However, despite the will and the efforts of the international community to bring about a solution to the problem, the Zionist regime of Israel, with the support of its imperialist allies, has created obstacles through renewed acts of violence against innocent Palestinians, who only demand their inalienable rights to freedom and self-determination, to their homeland and to sovereignty over their land and resources.

The oppressed but fighting people of Namibia, under the vanguard leadership of SWAPO, their sole and authentic representative, fully identify with the legitimate and just struggle of the people of Palestine, under the leadership of the Palestine Liberation Organization, (PLO), their sole and authentic representative, for political emancipation and national independence.

It is not by mere chance or coincidence that we have come to address this solemn meeting in solidarity with the people of Palestine. We have done so because of the similarity between the tragic history of the Namibian people and that of the Palestinian people, the commonness of the brutal enemies we are fighting against and the commonness of the objectives and aspirations of our dispossessed peoples and our countries occupied by the illegal Zionist and racist regimes in Tel Aviv and Pretoria, respectively. All that makes our solidarity necessary and a matter of principle.

For many years now, the Zionist regime in Tel Aviv has been allowed to continue subjecting the people of Palestine to untold suffering. Many Palestinians have lost their lives as a result of bombardments and have been annihilated in refugee camps, through the use of all types of destructive weapons. Thousands of women, men, children and old people have been forced to leave their beloved land and become strangers in foreign lands.

The continued Israeli military occupation of Palestine and other Arab territories, the annexation of parts of the occupied territories, the establishment of new settlements and the imposition of Israeli laws continue to be a threat not only to the peoples of the Middle East but also to international peace and security.

The just and heroic struggle being waged by the people of Palestine is our own struggle. Just as the people of Palestine are denied their inalienable rights to self-determination by Zionist Israel, so the people of Namibia continue to be subjected to untold suffering, brutal killing, torture, abduction and all sorts of Fascist acts of repression by the racist regime of South Africa.

Namibians and Palestinians share the tragic history of human-rights violations, oppression and exploitation of both their natural and their human resources. The hardships and sufferings our two nations have endured over decades deserve more serious attention and efforts by the international community.

The international community has been alerted on many occasions to the increasing military, economic and nuclear collaboration between Zionist Israel and the racist regime in Pretoria. The two racist and Fascist regimes have been allowed to continue this heinous practice for far too long.

Israel provides the racist regime of South Africa with all types of weapons of mass destruction, including nuclear technology. It also trains racist soldiers and provides mercenaries to kill and murder innocent civilians, not only in Namibia but in the region of southern Africa as a whole.

Also worth mentioning are the United States Administration and its direct involvement in the suffering of our peoples by collaborating with the two racist regimes, thus delaying our independence. It is shameful for the Administration of a big country such as the United States, which advocates justice and democracy elsewhere, to be involved in the brutalization of our innocent peoples, whose demands are only for freedom and self-determination.

Of late the Reagan Administration is trying to silence the voice of the people of Palestine in its decision to close the Palestine information office in Washington, we strongly believe that this and other similar attempts to close the Permanent Observer Mission of the Palestine Liberation Organization, (PLO), and to restrict the movements of the African National Congress of South Africa, (ANC) and SWAPO, should be denounced and condemned. We call upon this Committee, and the United Nations as a whole, to address this question very seriously, because if this campaign against the peoples is allowed to take place it will create a dangerous precedent, denying the rights of oppressed peoples elsewhere to have their voices heard and to be represented in the international Organization or be heard by the international public. We therefore call upon the United Nations and this Committee in particular to defend the right of the people of Palestine in their legitimate demands for self-determination and national independence. We strongly condemn such hypocritical double standards and outright disregard of the aspirations of peoples to their basic and fundamental rights.

The international community should, sooner rather than later, find a just solution to the Palestinian problem in order to put an end to the suffering of the Palestinian people. It is in this regard that SWAPO fully supports the holding of an international conference on the Middle East, with the full participation of the PLO. We believe that any solution to the Palestinian problem that excludes the participation of the PLO, the sole, authentic representative of the Palestinian people, will not achieve lasting peace in the region.

We demand the imposition of comprehensive mandatory sanctions against the two racist regimes in Tel Aviv and Pretoria for their intransigence and the threat they pose to peace in the Middle East and southern Africa and to international security.

Those who, because of their selfish economic interests, side and collaborate with these racist regimes must remember that the history of mankind has shown that no amount of repression, collaboration or distortion will prevent the peoples from attaining freedom and justice. It is a matter of time.

The struggle of the Palestinian people is just. Therefore, it must be fully supported. Let the Palestinian people be allowed to return to their land and be given a chance to live in peace. National independence is their birthright.

In conclusion, we once again express our firm solidarity with the people of Palestine and their vanguard movement, the PLO, their sole, authentic representative, in their struggle for self-determination and national independence.


The CHAIRMAN, (interpretation from French): Before calling on the next speaker, I should like to draw the attention of the Committee to the following. It will be recalled that in past years it was always decided that only messages from Heads of State or Government would be read out publicly and that other messages, coming from Ministers for Foreign Affairs or any other members of Government, would be reproduced in toto in the document issued for this purpose to highlight the activities of this International Day of Solidarity. We do not wish in the least to diminish the scope of messages sent by any eminent personality, but we have always followed this practice. That has the advantage of allowing the Committee to complete these meetings within the deadline set for us. So I would ask that any representative having a message from his Minister for Foreign Affairs make it available to us or give a summary of it, thereby enabling us to respect the tradition we have been following.

Mr. ZAPOTOCKY (Czechoslovakia): I have the honour to read out the text of the message sent yesterday on the occasion of this year's observance of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian people by Gustav Husak, General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia, President of the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic, to Yasser Arafat, Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization, (PLO). It reads as follows:


The CHAIRMAN, (interpretation from French): I thank Ambassador Zapotocky for the message from the General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia and President of the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic.
Mr. AL-FANNAH (Oman), (interpretation from Arabic): Mr. Chairman, in appreciation of the Government and the people of the Sultanate of Oman, on this International Day of Solidarity, where we all express our own solidarity with the Palestinian people, and in accordance with Oman's policy to participate in this important occasion, I am pleased to read out the following letter from Mr. Youssef Bin Alawi Bin Abdullah, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Sultanate of Oman, addressed to Your Excellency, the Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People:
THE CHAIRMAN (interpretation from Spanish): I thank the representative of Ghana for the important message he has just read out to us, sent by the Head of State of his country to our Committee. I now call on the Deputy Permanent Representative of Hungary.

Mr. ENDREFFY (Hungary): I have the honour to read out the text of a message of the Presidential Council of the Hungarian People's Republic addressed to the Executive of the Palestine Liberation Organization:


The CHAIRMAN, (interpretation from Spanish): I thank the representative of Hungary for reading out to us the message from Presidential Council of the Hungarian People's Republic.
Mr. TSVBTKOV (Bulgaria) (interpretation from French): I should like to read out a message which the General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Bulgarian Communist Party and President of the Council of State of the People's Republic of Bulgaria, Mr. Todor Zhivkov, sent on the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People to Mr. Yasser Arafat, Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), with a copy to the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Mr. Javier Perez de Cuellar: "I extend warmest congratulations to you on the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Arab people of Palestine. The Bulgarian people deeply appreciate the heroic and selfless struggle being waged by the Palestinians, under the leadership of the Palestine Liberation Organization, for the exercise of their inalienable national rights to self-determination and to the establishment of their own State on their soil. This just struggle has been broadly recognized internationally and enjoys the support of all progressive and democratic forces in the world.
The CHAIRMAN (interpretation from Spanish): I thank the Permanent Representative of Bulgaria for the important message he has just read out to us, which was addressed to the Committee by the President of the Council of State of his country.
Mr. TIMBRBABV (Union of Soviet Socialist Republics) (interpretation from Russian): On the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, the leadership of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) has received a message addressed to the Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization by the Council of Ministers of the Soviet Union. I should like to read out the text of that message.
The Soviet delegation completely supports the words of deep sympathy which have been addressed to the Arab people of Palestine and expresses the certainty that they will be successful in their courageous struggle for their inalienable rights.

The CHAIRMAN, (interpretation from Spanish): I thank the First Deputy Permanent Representative of the Soviet Union for the important message he has related to us from the Council of Ministers of the USSR.

I now call upon the Permanent Representative of Thailand, Ambassador Kasemsri. Mr. KASEMSRI, (Thailand): I now have the honour to read out the following message from His Excellency General Prem Tinsulanonda, Prime Minister of Thailand, on the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People:


The CHAIRMAN, (interpretation from French): I call on Mr. Kithong Vongsay, the Permanent Representative of the Lao People's Democratic Republic.

Mr. VOMGSAY (Lao People's Democratic Republic) (interpretation from French): On the occasion of the commemoration of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, His Excellency Mr. Phoumi Vongvichit, interim President of the Lao People's Democratic Republic, has addressed the following message, which I shall now read out*.


The CHAIRMAN, (interpretation from French): I call on His Excellency Mr. Mohamed Mansour, representative of the Yemen Arab Republic.

Mr. MANSOUR, (Yemen)(interpretation from Arabic): Allow me to read out the following message from His Excellency Colonel Ali Abdulla Saleh, President of the Yemen Arab Republic, addressed to the Secretary-General of the United Nations and to the Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People:


Mr. AL KAWARI (Qatar) (interpretation from Arabic): I am pleased to read out the text of the following message from His Highness

Sheikh Khalifa bin Hamad Al-Thani, Prince of the State of Qatar, to the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People:


Mr. BUI ZUAN NHAT (Viet Nam): I have the honour to read out the text of a message from Mr. Phara Hung, Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam on the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. It reads as follows:
Mr. MUNTASSER (Libyan Arab Jamahiriya), (interpretation from Arabic): I am pleased to read out the text of the message from Mr. Oumar Moustafa El-Mountasir, the General Secretary of the General People's Committee of the Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahiriya addressed to the Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People on the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People.
Mr. OLZWY (Mongolia): I have the honour to read the following message sent by the Council of Ministers of the Mongolian People's Republic to the Palestine Liberation Organization, (PLO) on the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People:
The CHAIRMAN, (interpretation from French): The next speaker is the representative of the united Arab Emirates.

Mr. AL-GHAALI, (United Arab Emirates), (interpretation from Arabic): I am pleased to read out a message addressed to the Committee by His Highness Sheikh Zeyed bin Sultan Al-Nahyan, the President of the United Arab Emirates, on the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People:


The CHAIRMAN, (interpretation from French): The next speaker, is the representative of Democratic Yemen, and I now call on him.

Mr. THABET, (Democratic Yemen), (interpretation from Arabic): I wish to read out a message from His Excellency Mr. Haider Abubakar Al-Attas, the Chairman of the Presidium of the People's Supreme Council of the People's Democratic Republic of Yemen, on the occasion of the commemoration of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. The message is addressed to the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Mr. Javier Perez de Cuellar, and reads as follows*.


Mr. KABORB (Burkina Paso) (interpretation from French): I have the privilege and the great honour, in the absence of the Permanent Representative of my country, Ambassador Michel Dan from the Burkina Paso delegation to the forty-second session of the General Assembly, to read out on his behalf, here in the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, Compaore, Head of State of Burkina Paso, on the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People:
Mr. CHOUERI, (Lebanon), (interpretation from Arabic): Mr. Chairman, it is a pleasure for me to convey to you the message of the President of Lebanon's National Assembly on the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. His message reads as follows*
The CHAIRMAN (interpretation from French): I believe that we all understand Lebanon's position as a front-line country in the Palestinian problem, and that it speaks on behalf of the Palestinians.

I now call on Mr. Ebrahim, the Secretary for Foreign Affairs of the Pan Africanist Congress of Azania (PAC).

Mr. EBRAHIM (Pan Africanist Congress of Azania (PAC)): Mr. Chairman, on behalf of the Pan Africanist Congress of Azania, the custodian of the genuine aspirations of the oppressed, exploited, discriminated against and dispossessed people of Azania - the African name for apartheid South Africa - allow me to express our firm support with the oppressed, exploited, discriminated against and dispossessed people of Palestine.

In many respects, the Azanian and Palestinian people have had to share a common colonial fate. The peoples of Azania and Palestine have seen their countries handed over by British colonialism to settler minorities. The legitimate and inalienable rights of the indigenous people have been blatantly flouted and totally disrespected. Today, southern Africa and the Middle East constitute areas of international tension. Through manipulation and conflicts, the situations there have been totally distorted: The Palestinian people, fighting for all the principles for which the United Nations was established - principles enshrined in the Charter - are branded as "terrorists", while the usurper is considered "a Member State". The Palestinians have an inalienable right to establish a free and democratic State in their homeland, Palestine. They also have the right to employ all methods at their disposal to realize that sacred right. The right to self-determination is inalienable: no law, no treaty, and certainly no force, can deny a people from claiming it. The exercise of this right may be denied temporarily, but not the legitimate claim to it.

In apartheid South Africa, minority settlers were given all political, military and economic rights by the British Parliament, the so-called citadel of democracy, to the total exclusion of the rightful majority in that country. The settlers, who comprised one fifth of the population, allocated to themselves 87.3 per cent of the land area.

This wholesale dispossession of a people from its country and usurpation of its right to self-determination is the cornerstone of the current problem in southern Africa.

Apartheid is not mere racial discrimination, but denial of the fundamental right of self-determination, to the oppressed and dispossessed majority in that country.

Given that apartheid South Africa and Zionist Israel are both the product of British colonialist history, given that settlers were imposed on the majority of both indigenous populations, given that they both subscribe to the myth of racial superiority, it is not very difficult to understand the close collaboration that presently exists between Pretoria and Tel Aviv, despite the fact that the present rulers in apartheid South Africa were known collaborators with Nazi Germany.

The struggle of the Azanians and the Palestinians is one struggle: it is a popular struggle to realize the inalienable right of each people to self-determination in the land of its forefathers.

The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and the Pan Africanist Congress of Azania (PAC) have kept the torch of freedom and the claim of their respective peoples to self-determination in their usurped lands very much alive. They enjoy the full support of their respective peoples and are enjoying ever-growing support of justice-minded peoples the world over. Consequently they must triumph, and they will triumph. Only the establishment of a free Azania and a free Palestine can effectively end the current crisis in those two parts of the world, and this recognition, internationally too, is fast manifesting itself.

The Pan Africanist Congress of Azania (PAC) enjoys excellent relations with the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO). The Azanian and Palestinian peoples are daily victims of racist and Zionist terror. Hence our solidarity is mutual.

The Pan Africanist Congress of Azania unreservedly supports the just and legitimate struggle of the Palestinian people. That is only natural, given the close military, nuclear, intelligence and other forms of collaboration that exist between Pretoria and Tel Aviv.

In conclusion allow me, Mr. Chairman, on behalf of the Pan Africanist Congress of Azania, to thank most sincerely the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People for inviting us to participate in this solemn commemorative meeting.

The CHAIRMAN, (interpretation from French): In keeping with the tradition of our Committee, I have the pleasure and honour of calling upon Mr. Farouk Kaddoumi, a member of the Executive Committee and head of the Political Department of the Palestine Liberation Organization.

Mr. KADDOUMI, (Palestine Liberation Organization), (interpretation from Arabic): I have the honour, at the conclusion of this International Day of Solidarity with the People of Palestine, of expressing to this Committee our deep satisfaction and gratitude for its support for our cause. The unshakable positions of principle which have been expressed by you, Sir, in your statement, and the messages addressed by the heads of States and rulers of friendly countries constitute the best proof that victory for our just cause is inevitable, because our Palestinian people are looking to you in friendship and brotherliness. They are proud of your friendship and the sincerity of your positions.

We reaffirm now to our dear and sincere friends that we appreciate their positions and consider, them an essential factor, in our struggle to move forward in the realization of our aspirations and our dreams for the establishment of a just and lasting peace in the Middle East region.

This manifestation today has comforted us and confirmed the rightness of our hope in the united Nations and its ability to contribute effectively and to help the peoples struggling to recover their national rights, their right to freedom, independence and progress. However strong colonialism and aggression may be, however oppressive colonialism may be, those forces cannot halt the march of the peoples of the world towards liberation, nor can they prevent those peoples from fighting with determination to recover their rights and to build a future for themselves, free of any and all foreign intervention.

The peoples of the world will never bow to the logic of domination and aggression. The peoples of the world will resist and make all the necessary sacrifices.

Our people is one of those peoples that will carry the banner of victory to the very ramparts of Jerusalem, the capital of the Palestinian State, which will be established. We are fighting for a just cause. We are struggling to recover our legitimate rights. You are all behind us in our struggle for our rights, for the right, for justice and peace. Peace cannot be established throughout the world while there are still peoples suffering from oppression in the world, peoples that have lost their sovereignty and independence. The peoples of southern Africa - of South Africa and Namibia - and the Palestinian people are together in the vanguard of mankind's march forward. Let us use every means in the struggle to put an end to injustice and occupation, as well as to colonialism, racism and Zionism. Peace and justice shall reign in those countries. Our war is a just war. It is not directed against anyone or anything other than wrong, injustice, occupation and oppression in all its forms. Through our people's struggle, and however much time that struggle may require, our people will eventually, in the final outcome, triumph.

The United Nations will remain a solid foundation for the protection of our snail peoples. This Organization will defend them, and that is why we place great hopes in it. We are extremely grateful for, and admire, the efforts of the Secretary-General, Mr. Javier Perez de Cuellar, to make the united Nations resolutions a living reality. The oppressed peoples of the world trust that the actions of this international Organization will continue to be a strong tool, a solid means of bringing about freedom and safeguarding peace and security throughout the world.

I say to our dear friends that we shall remain true to the principles of this international Organization and we shall remain loyal and committed to its resolutions. Let us struggle with determination and strength to make a reality of those resolutions.

We thank you once again. Sir, and express our great appreciation for your efforts and the efforts of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People. We should also like to thank our friend, Mr. Massamba Sarre for his ceaseless efforts and the efforts of the members of the Committee. We should also like to thank Mr. Joseph Reed, Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations, and all those who work in the Division for Palestinian Rights, particularly Mr. Mirza, Director of the Division, for their praiseworthy and extremely valuable efforts.

Indeed, we thank all our dear friends most warmly for their support for the people of Palestine and for their unswerving solidarity with the Palestinian people under the leadership of the Palestine Liberation Organization, its sole, authentic representative.

The CHAIRMAN, (interpretation from French): At today's special meetings we heard, received or read out 30 messages from Heads of State, 12 from Heads of Government, 10 from Ministers for Foreign Affairs. Simultaneously with today's commemoration, ceremonies of solidarity were held in Vienna, Geneva, Jakarta and Buenos Aires under the auspices of the United Nations through its Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People.

As has been observed, today's ceremonies were more than symbolic. They demonstrated an attitude of heart, soul and mind? they demonstrated confidence, especially in the United Nations and in what it can do to enable peace to reign in the Middle East and the Palestinian people to regain their inalienable right to self-determination and independence. We are pleased to note that there was a consensus at our meetings that there should be no delay in convening the international peace conference on the Middle East. To achieve that we have had for several years to exert persuasion and make compromises to make all sides accept the idea as the most appropriate and timely way to restore peace to the Middle East. In other words, with perseverance and faith, any difficulty can be overcome.

With respect to the Palestinian question, we are glad to be able to say that we are on the right road, and that with patience and, especially, faith and determination, we shall be able to reach our ultimate goal of establishing peace in the Middle East through the realization of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people. The members of the Committee have been much encouraged by the statements we heard today from the Secretary-General, the guardian of the values of the united Nations, from the President of the General Assembly, representative and custodian of the world's conscience, and from the President of the Security Council, guarantor of international peace and security. We are glad to be able to affirm that with the assistance of all, working together as a team, we shall spare no effort. A faithful, determined team is beginning to form around the guidelines, purposes and principles of the Charter and the Organization.

As our work comes to an end for today, I wish on behalf of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People and in my own name to express our gratitude for the understanding and encouragement we have received from all. To be sure, we all know we must work to achieve our lofty purpose: the defence of the just cause of restoring the rights of the Palestinian people.

It gives me pleasure to pay a tribute to the staff of the Division for Palestinian Rights; with selflessness and devotion they have done everything to facilitate our task. We thank those who made today's special meetings possible, including those who devotedly work behind the scenes: the interpreters and all the rest of the Secretariat team. Nor must I forget the security officers.

If maintained, the path we have blazed today, the flame we have lit today, will be decisive in progress towards the goal we are pursuing: the exercise by the Palestinian people of their, inalienable rights.


I wish at this stage to note that we have received messages from the following persons: His Excellency Mr. France Albert Rene, President of Seychelles; His Excellency Mr. Joseph Saidu Momoh, President of the Republic of Sierra Leone; His Excellency Mr. Lansana Conte, President of the Republic of Guinea, from the Ministers for Foreign Affairs of Madagascar, the Republic of Korea, Japan and Greece; from the Government of Nicaragua; and from non-governmental organizations such as the Organization for International Studies, the World Federation of Trade onions, the German Democratic Republic Solidarity Committee, and the Polish Committee for Solidarity with the Peoples of Asia, Africa and Latin America. All those messages will be reproduced in the document summarizing our work.

Once again, I thank everybody for their support and their participation in this International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People.

The meeting rose at 8 p.m.


This record is subject to correction.

Corrections should be submitted in one of the working languages, preferably in the same language as the text to which they refer. They should be set forth in a memorandum and also, if possible, incorporated in a copy of the record. They should be sent, within one week of the date of this document to the Chief, Official Records Editing Section, Department of Conference Services, room, DC2-750, 2 United Nations Plaza.

Any corrections to the records of this meeting will be issued in a corrigendum.



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