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UNITED
NATIONS
A

        General Assembly
A/32/35
23 September 1977

REPORT
OF THE
COMMITTEE ON THE EXERCISE OF
THE INALIENABLE RIGHTS
OF THE PALESTINIAN PEOPLE
GENERAL ASSEMBLY
OFFICIAL RECORDS: THIRTY-SECOND SESSION
SUPPLEMENT No. 35 (A/32/35)
UNITED NATIONS
New York, 1977

NOTE

Symbols of United Nations documents are composed of capital letters combined with figures. Mention of such a symbol indicates a reference to a United Nations document.

Original: English/French
23 September 1977
CONTENTS


Paragraphs
Page
LETTER OF TRANSMITTAL
v
I.INTRODUCTION
1 - 3
1
II.MANDATE OF THE COMMITTEE
4
1
III.ORGANIZATION OF WORK
5 - 9
1
A.Election of officers
5
1
B.Participation in the work of the Committee
6 - 8
2
C.Establishment of a Task Force
9
2
IV.ACTION TAKEN BY THE COMMITTEE
10 - 37
2
A.Efforts to promote the implementation of its recommendations
in accordance with paragraph 5 of General Assembly
resolution 31/20
10 - 31
2
B.Dissemination of information in accordance with paragraph 6 of
General Assembly resolution 31/20
32 - 37
7
V.APPRAISAL OF ACTION TAKEN IN ACCORDANCE WITH PARAGRAPH 7 OF GENERAL ASSEMBLY RESOLUTION 31/20
38 - 42
9
VI.RECOMMENDATIONS OF THE COMMITTEE
43 - 45

10
ANNEXES
I.RECOMMENDATIONS OF THE COMMITTEE ENDORSED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY
AT ITS THIRTY-FIRST SESSION
11
II.A.LETTER DATED 18 APRIL 1977 FROM THE CHAIRMAN OF THE COMMITTEE
TO THE PERMANENT REPRESENTATIVE OF CANADA TO THE UNITED NATIONS
14
B.LETTER DATED 18 APRIL 1977 FROM THE CHAIRMAN OF THE COMMITTEE
TO THE PERMANENT REPRESENTATIVE OF FRANCE TO THE UNITED NATIONS
15
C.LETTER DATED 18 APRIL 1977 FROM THE CHAIRMAN OF THE COMMITTEE
TO THE PERMANENT REPRESENTATIVE OF THE FEDERAL-REPUBLIC OF
GERMANY TO THE UNITED NATIONS
16
D.LETTER DATED 18 APRIL 1977 FROM THE CHAIRMAN OF THE COMMITTEE
TO THE PERMANENT REPRESENTATIVE OF THE UNITED KINGDOM OF GREAT BRITAIN AND NORTHERN IRELAND TO THE UNITED NATIONS
17
E.LETTER DATED 16 APRIL 1977 FROM THE CHAIRMAN OF THE COMMITTEE
TO THE PERMANENT REPRESENTATIVE OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
TO THE UNITED NATIONS
18
F.LETTER DATED 18 APRIL 1977 FROM THE CHAIRMAN OF THE COMMITTEE
TO THE PERMANENT REPRESENTATIVE OF ISRAEL TO THE UNITED NATIONS
19



LETTER OF TRANSMITTAL

19 September 1977

Sir,



I have the honour to transmit to you herewith the report of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People for submission to the General Assembly in accordance with paragraph 5 of resolution 31/20.

Accept, Sir, the assurances of my highest consideration.


(Signed) Médoune FALL
Chairman of the Committee
on the Exercise of the Inalienable
Rights of the Palestinian People

His Excellency
Mr. Kurt Waldheim
Secretary-General of the United Nations

I. INTRODUCTION


1. The Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People 9 established by the General Assembly in resolution 3376 (XXX) of 10 November 1975, submitted its first report to the Assembly at its thirty-first session. 1/

2. In its resolution 31/20 of 24 November 1976, adopted by 90 votes to 16, with 30 abstentions, the General Assembly took note of the report of the Committee and endorsed the recommendations contained therein, as a basis for the solution of the question of Palestine. Those recommendations are reproduced in annex I to the present report. Subsequently, by its decision 31/318 of 22 December 1976, the General Assembly enlarged the membership of the Committee by the addition of Guyana, Mali and Nigeria.

3. The following States were members of the Committee in 1977: Afghanistan, Cuba, Cyprus, German Democratic Republic, Guinea, Guyana, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Lao People's Democratic Republic, Madagascar, Malaysia, Mali, Malta, Nigeria, Pakistan, Romania, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Tunisia, Turkey, Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic and Yugoslavia.

II. MANDATE OF THE COMMITTEE


4. The present mandate of the Committee was specified in paragraphs 5 and 6 of resolution 31/20. In paragraph 5, the General Assembly authorized the Committee to exert all efforts to promote the implementation of its recommendations and to report thereon to the Assembly at its thirty-second session. In paragraph 6, the Assembly requested the Committee to promote the greatest possible dissemination of information on its programme of implementation through non-governmental organizations and other appropriate means.

III. ORGANIZATION OF WORK

A. Election of officers


5. At its 19th meeting, on 26 January 1977, the Committee unanimously re-elected the following officers:


Chairman:Mr. Médoune Fall (Senegal)
Vice-Chairmen:Mr. Ricardo Alarcon Quesada (Cuba)

Mr. Mir Abdul Wahab Siddiq (Afghanistan)
Rapporteur:Mr. Victor J. Gauci (Malta)


B. Participation in the work of the Committee


6. The Committee decided that those States Members of the United Nations and permanent observers to the United Nations which had participated in the work of the Committee as observers in 1976 could, if they so wished, continue to participate in that capacity in 1977. These were: Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, Mauritania, Syrian Arab Republic, the League of Arab States and the Palestine Liberation Organization, which continued in 1977 to participate in the work of the Committee as observers.

7. In order to encourage the contribution of all sectors of opinion to its work, the Committee authorized the Chairman to request the Secretary-General again to invite all States Members of the United Nations and the permanent observers to the United Nations which were not already participating in the work of the Committee to do so, if they so wished, as observers; they were also to be informed that the Committee was ready to receive and to study their suggestions and proposals made either orally or in writing. This invitation was to be brought to the particular notice of all those States directly interested in the Middle East situation and the members of the Security Council, especially its permanent members.

8. The Secretary-General's letter conveying this invitation and the replies received are contained in documents A/AC.103/L.31 and Add.1-4.

C. Establishment of a Task Force


9. To facilitate its work' the Committee appointed a Task Force composed of nine members. It was entrusted with the task of: (1) keeping up to date with events which affected the work of the Committee and suggesting to the Committee action which it could usefully undertake, and (2) assisting the Committee in any other specific assignment related to its work. The following were appointed members of the Task Force: Malta (Chairman), Afghanistan, Cuba, Guinea, Guyana, India, Senegal, Tunisia and Palestine Liberation Organization.

IV. ACTION TAKEN BY THE COMMITTEE

A.
Efforts to promote the implementation of its recommendations in accordance with paragraph 5 of General Assembly resolution 31/20

1. Review of the discussion in the General Assembly at its thirty-first session


10. The Committee studied and analysed the views expressed in the discussion of its report and recommendations at the thirty-first session of the General Assembly. It noted the concurrence of opinion that the question of Palestine was a central element of the Middle East conflict and that, therefore, a just and lasting peace in the area could be achieved only if the legitimate rights and aspirations of the Palestinian people were taken into account. It noted also the emphasis made that a satisfactory and equitable solution to the question of Palestine could only be achieved within the framework of a comprehensive settlement in the Middle East, in accordance with the relevant resolutions of the United Nations. The Committee noted that these major trends of opinion emerging from the debate confirmed the basic considerations presented by the Committee in its report.

11. On the other hand, a noticeable trend of opinion had also held that the Committee had given detailed consideration only to one aspect - though an important one - of the Middle East problem, and that, in consequence, the report and recommendations lacked a sufficient balance. However, the Committee maintained that this was a question of the mandate assigned to it; the Committee could not go beyond its mandate, while recognizing that other aspects of the wider problem were dealt with elsewhere within the United Nations system.

12. The Committee noted that under the terms of General Assembly resolution 31/62, the Secretary-General had had contacts with all parties to the conflict and the Co-Chairmen of the Peace Conference on the Middle East. Taking into account its mandate, the Committee felt that a fuller report on those contacts might have been made available to it, and expressed the hope that it would be kept fully informed should such contacts take place in the future.


2. Contacts with the Security Council and consideration of possible action


13. The Committee noted with appreciation the information conveyed by the Permanent Observer of the Palestine Liberation Organization on 28 March 1977 that the Palestine National Council, at its meeting in Cairo, in March 1977, had decided (a) to consider the recommendations contained in the report submitted by the Committee to the General Assembly at its thirty-first session as a positive and progressive step towards the achievement of the aspirations and rights of the Palestinian people, including the right of return and the right to self-determination, independence and national sovereignty; (b) to declare that any settlement or agreement affecting the rights of the Palestinian people concluded in its absence would be null and void.

14. As an expression of the views of the people directly concerned, the Committee decided to bring this information to the attention of the Security Council, a letter was accordingly addressed to the President of the Security Council on 28 March 1977. 2/ The Committee wishes to stress the importance of this matter, and also desires to bring it to the attention of the General Assembly.

15. At the invitation of Mr. Yasser Arafat, Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization, the Chairman of the Committee visited Lebanon in August 1977 and met with Mr. Arafat and other leaders of the Palestine Liberation Organization. Reporting to the Committee on these meetings, the Chairman stated that Mr. Arafat had expressed his appreciation of the work of the Committee and had stated that, despite certain reservations, the Palestine Liberation Organization considered the Committee's recommendations, especially if adopted by the Security Council, as an equitable basis for the solution of the question of Palestine.

16. The Chairman also visited some of the refugee camps, where he was able to see for himself the unacceptable plight of the refugees. He was impressed by their wish for a better future and for a peaceful and just solution to their problem as well as by their determination to continue the struggle if a peaceful solution was not forthcoming.

17. Consideration was given by the Committee throughout its deliberations as to the most propitious time for the Security Council to take up the item entitled "Question of Palestine", as it was requested to do in paragraph 4 of General Assembly resolution 31/20, which urged the Security Council to consider again as soon as possible the recommendations contained in the Committee's report, taking fully into account the observations made thereon during the debate in the General Assembly. It was evident that the question of timing of such consideration could not be looked at in isolation, and that the situation in the region itself had to be taken into account. It was clear too, that there was need for continuing consultations so that a meeting of the Security Council could be called for under favourable conditions.

18. The Committee attached particular importance to this matter, first, because implementation of the Committee's recommendations required the active involvement of the Security Council and, secondly, because the discussion in the General Assembly had revealed that there was virtual unanimity of opinion that the Palestinian issue was a fundamental element in the search for a settlement of the Middle East conflict. The Committee therefore felt that, to the extent possible within its own mandate, it should strive to facilitate the work of the Security Council in taking positive action when the latter was next called upon to reconsider the problems of the area.

19. The attention of the Committee was drawn to the fact that the political communiqué issued after the Ministerial Meeting of the Bureau of Non-Aligned Countries, held at New Delhi from 7 to 11 April 1977, had noted with satisfaction that the General Assembly had adopted the Committee's report and had also called upon the Security Council to take measures for the immediate implementation of the Committee's recommendations. That communiqué had also referred to the decision taken at the Fifth Conference of Heads of State or Government of the Non-Aligned Countries on the need to bring pressure on Israel, especially in the Security Council, with a view to securing Israel's compliance with United Nations resolutions. Communiqués on the question of Palestine issued at other international meetings of countries, political parties and organizations were also noted with satisfaction.

20. It was felt that there was a wider recognition by certain members of the Security Council of the aspirations of the Palestinian people, and of the crucial relevance of this aspect within the Middle East situation. The urgency of reconvening the Geneva Conference had been acknowledged; one of the main points at issue was still whether the Palestine Liberation Organization should be allowed to participate in that Conference on an equal footing with the other parties. On both these points the position of the Committee was very firm; it had repeatedly stressed the urgency of constructive efforts towards a just solution guaranteeing the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, and insisted on the participation of the Palestine Liberation Organization, as the representatives of the Palestinian people, on an equal footing in any such efforts. It was considered useful, therefore, for an active dialogue to be established between the Committee and the participants in the Geneva Conference with a view to promoting a negotiated solution, since it was felt that the Committee, having already demonstrated its impartiality, was well placed to promote its recommendations on implementation of the rights of the Palestinian people.

21. The Committee decided that it would be useful if those members of the Security Council which had been unable to support the report and recommendations of the Committee would indicate their latest thinking on the question of the rights of the Palestinian people; the Committee accordingly authorized the Chairman to address letters to the Permanent Representatives of Canada, France, Federal Republic of Germany, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and the United States of America seeking this information. At the same time, the Chairman was authorized to address a similar letter to the Permanent Representative of Israel, as a principal party to the issue. Copies of these letters are reproduced in annex II to the present report.

22. Since no replies had been received to these letters the Committee decided that its Chairman should meet the permanent representatives of those countries which were members of the Security Council and seek to obtain oral replies from them.

23. The Chairman reported on his contacts at the 22nd meeting of the Committee on 7 June 1977. In those meetings the Chairman had emphasized that the Committee's sole objective 3 within its terms of reference was to make a constructive contribution to the heart of the problem in the Middle East, and that it had invariably sought the views of all Member States in carrying out its mandate as determined by the General Assembly; furthermore, as a body duly constituted by the General Assembly, its recommendations carried the authority of a United Nations resolution. The Permanent Representatives of the five States had all adduced the fact that they had not voted for General Assembly resolutions 3376 (XXX) and 31/20 as their main reason for not replying to the Chairman's letter. In the Chairman's view, this argument involved a dangerous contradiction. It not only risked paralysing the Organization but could also undermine the de jure status of Israel which had been established by General Assembly resolution 273 (III) of 11 May 1949, for which certain countries had not voted.

24. Summarizing the outcome of his contacts with the five Powers concerned, the Chairman stated that they had evidently appreciated the fact that the Committee's report would figure largely in the deliberations of the Security Council when it considered the question of Palestine, but had felt that in view of the efforts being made at the time it would be better if such consideration by the Council were deferred to a more appropriate moment.

25. The Committee was convinced that its aim should be to seek to consolidate the positive trend that was apparently developing in the views of certain countries and to contribute towards the creation of a climate which would favour the achievement of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people. To this end, it felt that it was important that the work of the Committee should be the subject of a thorough exchange of views in the light of the evolution of the situation and the contacts which were taking place.

26. In view of the urgency of the matter, and in order to highlight the relevance of the Committee's recommendations, the Chairman was authorized, with the full backing of the Committee, to address a letter to the President of the Security Council.

27. Accordingly, on 8 June 1977 the Chairman addressed a letter to the President of the Security Council, which though not suggesting a definite date for a Security Council meeting, drew attention to paragraph 4 of General Assembly resolution 31/20, and conveyed the Committee's strong belief that delay in action by the Council would be prejudicial to progress, and that the requirements of the present situation demanded that at its next meeting on the question of Palestine the Security Council should endeavour urgently to promote a positive approach which would lead tangibly towards a solution of the Palestinian problem (S/12345).

28. On 12 September 1977, the Committee decided to authorize the Chairman to address another letter to the President of the Security Council which would again recall paragraph 4 of General Assembly resolution 31/20 and stress that the recommendations contained in the Committee's report in 1976 had been endorsed by the General Assembly and were therefore recommendations of the General Assembly. While no specific date was suggested for a Security Council meeting on the question of Palestine, the President of the Council was requested to ensure that this item was discussed by the Council before being taken up by the General Assembly at its thirty-second session. The letter also contained a request that it be published as a document of the Security Council (S/12399), while a copy was sent to the Secretary-General with the request that it be published as a document of the General Assembly (A/32/217).


3. Reaction to developments in the occupied territories


29. The Committee viewed with extreme concern the actions taken by the Government of Israel in the occupied territories, especially the administrative measures it had announced and which seemed to imply a continuation of the policy aimed at permanent annexation of those territories. Strong condemnation was expressed against these actions of the Government of Israel which could only encourage the establishment of even more such settlements and create greater tension in the area, against the wishes of the international community.

30. Accordingly, on 28 July 1977, the Chairman again addressed a letter to the President of the Security Council expressing his deep concern at the action taken by the Government of Israel to approve three settlements at Camp Kadum, Ofra and Maale Adumin, situated in the territories illegally occupied since June 1967. In this letter, the Chairman also pointed out that this decision of the Government of Israel was incompatible with the recommendations contained in the Committee's report, which were endorsed by the General Assembly at its thirty-first session; the decision furthermore constituted a violation of the Geneva Convention Relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War of 12 August 1949 3/ of General Assembly resolutions 3525 (XXX) of 15 December 1975 and 31/106 of 16 December 1976, of Security Council resolutions 237 (1967) of 14 June 1967 and 252 (1968) of 21 May 1968, and of statements made on behalf of the Security Council by its President at the 1922nd meeting, on 26 May 1976, and the 1969th meeting, on 11 November 1976. The Chairman also expressed the view that such a decision merely aggravated the tensions in the region, artificially erected an additional obstacle to the realization of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, and undermined efforts to promote a just and lasting settlement of the Middle East problem (S/12377).


4. Other action taken by the Committee


31. With respect to paragraph 3 of General Assembly resolution 31/20 which urged all competent bodies of the United Nations to take necessary action, as appropriate, in accordance with its programme of implementation, the Committee was of the opinion that those bodies should stand ready to implement the recommendations of the Committee, and should take whatever intermediate steps were necessary at this stage to avoid delays in implementation of those recommendations. At the request of the Committee, this view was brought by the Secretary-General to the attention particularly of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency and the United Nations Conciliation Commission on Palestine, which were likely to have specific responsibilities in the implementation of the programme.


B.
Dissemination of information in accordance with paragraph 6 of General Assembly resolution 31/20
32. As requested in paragraph 6 of General Assembly resolution 31/20, the Committee attached the greatest importance to dissemination of information on its work, and on the various aspects of the problem of the implementation of its recommendations concerning the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people. It was felt important that the public should realize that the Committee's function was not to support any one country against another but to deal fairly and objectively with a problem affecting international peace and security. The view was expressed that no opportunity should be missed to bring to the attention of the world public all the facts of the Palestinian problem which had long been ignored.

33. With this end in view, the Chairman of the Committee addressed the Economic and Social Council at its sixty-second session, held in New York, and the Committee was represented by a delegation of two members at the World Conference on Action Against Apartheid, held at Lagos from 22 to 26 August 1977. In addition, the report and recommendations of the Committee were brought to the attention of the World Health Assembly when it met at Geneva in May 1977. The Committee also decided that the resolution on the question of Palestine adopted by the Council of Ministers and approved by the Summit Conference of Heads of State and Government of the Organization of African Unity at Libreville in July 1977 should be published as a document of the General Assembly (A/32/160).

34. At its 23rd meeting, on 9 August 1977, the Committee decided that the issue by the United Nations of a series of commemorative stamps relating to the question of Palestinian rights would be an appropriate method of highlighting those rights, and accordingly authorized the Chairman to request the Secretary-General to initiate steps to issue such a series of stamps.

35. The Committee considered a suggestion that an international day of solidarity with the Palestinian people be designated and observed, and decided that this proposal could be included in a resolution at the thirty-second session of the General Assembly.

36. In considering ways and means of obtaining the widest possible radio and television coverage of the Palestinian question, the Committee recalled that, at the Fifth Conference of Heads of State or Government of Non-Aligned Countries held at Colombo in August 1976, a resolution adopted by that Conference referred to the need to strive in all fields, at the widest international level, to realize the objective of recognition of and respect for the rights of the Palestinian people (see A/31/197, p. 121). It was decided therefore that the Committee should approach the Co-ordination Council of the Pool of Press Agencies of Non-Aligned Countries with the request that maximum coverage be given by national and international media to the various aspects of this question.

37. The Chairman accordingly addressed the Chairman of the Co-ordinating Bureau of the Non-Aligned Countries in New York requesting him to bring the Committee's decision to the notice of the Co-ordination Council of the Pool of Press Agencies of the Non-Aligned Countries so that it might take steps to improve coverage of the question of Palestine by national and international mass media.


V.
APPRAISAL OF ACTION TAKEN IN ACCORDANCE WITH PARAGRAPH 7 OF GENERAL ASSEMBLY RESOLUTION 31/20

30. In its consideration of action taken by the Office of Public Information of the Secretariat to disseminate information on the work of the Committee g as required by paragraph 7 of General Assembly resolution 31/20, the Committee agreed that the Office of Public Information could, through its network of information centres throughout the world, play an influential role by making available to the public an objective presentation of the Palestinian question. The opinion was expressed that the Office of Public Information in particular was in the best position to state the truth about decisions on this question in the United Nations 9 and about the history of the United Nations involvement with the Palestinian question - facts which would otherwise be buried in the archives of the United Nations and utilized only by specialists or by Governments in pursuit of their own interests.

39. It was felt that there was genuine public interest in the question of the Middle East and in the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people, although many seemed unable to distinguish between a resolution dealing with refugees and a resolution dealing with a people's right to independence. Publications on the question should be strictly documentary in nature, simple and accurate in their coverage of significant and historical events.

40. The Committee noted that the Office of Public Information had recorded interviews with members and observers of the Committee which were broadcast in English, French, Spanish and Arabic and that the United Nations Monthly Chronicle had carried articles on the proceedings of the Committee.

41. The Committee was agreed that this campaign should be intensified in the coming months through the publication of pamphlets dealing with individual aspects of the problem, and through more television and radio broadcasts in several languages aimed at reaching the widest possible audience throughout the world. The United Nations Monthly Chronicle could also extend coverage to articles on events beyond the work of the Committee and take in events and developments in the Middle East region.

42. It was also felt that the publication of pamphlets on the various aspects of the problem would be particularly useful in making the facts concerning the rights of the Palestinian people more widely disseminated and better understood.

VI. RECOMMENDATIONS OF THE COMMITTEE


43. Having taken into account the various observations made on its report and recommendations and in the light of current events in the region, the Committee unanimously decided to reaffirm the validity of its recommendations, endorsed by the General Assembly, which are reproduced as annex I of this report. It agreed that the date suggested for the withdrawal of Israeli occupation forces from territories occupied in 1967, although now passed, should be retained for its symbolic significance and as a timely reminder of the urgency of a peaceful solution under the auspices of the United Nations, and particularly on the basis of resolutions unanimously adopted but not yet implemented.

44. It was also agreed that an intensification of efforts was necessary to implement those recommendations with the minimum delay, and that the various sectors of the United Nations system should act in concert to promote their implementation by peaceful means.

45. In the course of the discussion in the Committee, suggestions were made as to ways and means by which the objectives of the Committee could be further advanced. It was felt, however, that a decision on these suggestions should be deferred until such time as the Security Council had considered the question of Palestine.

___________

1/ Official Records of the General Assembly, Thirty-first Session, Supplement No. 35 (A/31/35).

2/ Official Records of the Security Council, Thirty-second Year, Supplement for January, February and March 1977, document S/12308.

3/ United Nations, Treaty Series, vol. 75, No. 973, p. 287.

ANNEX I*

Recommendations of the Committee endorsed by the
General Assembly at its thirty-first session

I. BASIC CONSIDERATIONS AND GUIDELINES


59. The question of Palestine is at the heart of the Middle East problem, and, consequently, the Committee stresses its belief that no solution in the Middle East can be envisaged which does not fully take into account the legitimate aspirations of the Palestinian people.

60. The legitimate and inalienable rights of the Palestinian people to return to their homes and property and to achieve self-determination, national independence and sovereignty are endorsed by the Committee in the conviction that the full implementation of these rights will contribute decisively to a comprehensive and final settlement of the Middle East crisis.

61. The participation of the Palestine Liberation Organization, the representative of the Palestinian people, on an equal footing with other parties, on the basis of General Assembly resolutions 3236 (XXIX) and 3375 (XXX) is indispensable in all efforts, deliberations and conferences on the Middle East which are held under the auspices of the United Nations.

62. The Committee recalls the fundamental principle of the inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by force and stresses the consequent obligation for complete and speedy evacuation of any territory so occupied.

63. The Committee considers that it is the duty and the responsibility of all concerned to enable the Palestinians to exercise their inalienable rights.

64. The Committee recommends an expanded and more influential role by the United Nations and its organs in promoting a just solution to the question of Palestine and in the implementation of such a solution. The Security Council, in particular, should take appropriate action to facilitate the exercise by the Palestinians of their right to return to their homes, lands and property. The Committee, furthermore, urges the Security Council to promote action towards a just solution, taking into account all the powers conferred on it by the Charter of the United Nations.

65. It is with this perspective in view and on the basis of the numerous resolutions of the United Nations, after due consideration of all the facts, proposals and suggestions advanced in the course of its deliberations, that the Committee submits its recommendations on the modalities for the implementation of the exercise of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people.

II. THE RIGHT OF RETURN


66. The natural and inalienable right of Palestinians to return to their homes is recognized by resolution 194 (III), which the General Assembly has reaffirmed almost every year since its adoption. This right was also unanimously recognized by the Security Council in its resolution 237 (1967); the time for the urgent implementation of these resolutions is long overdue.

67. Without prejudice to the right of all Palestinians to return to their homes, lands and property, the Committee considers that the programme of implementation, of the exercise of this right may be carried out in two phases.


Phase one


68. The first phase involves the return to their homes of the Palestinians displaced as a result of the war of June 1967. The Committee recommends that:


(i) The Security Council should request the immediate implementation of its resolution 237 (1967) and that such implementation should not be related to any other condition;

(ii) The resources of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and/or of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East, suitably financed and mandated, may be employed to assist in the solution of any logistical problems involved in the resettlement of those returning to their homes. These agencies could also assist, in co-operation with the host countries and the Palestine Liberation Organization, in the identification of the displaced Palestinians.


Phase two


69. The second phase deals with the return to their homes of the Palestinians displaced between 1948 and 1967. The Committee recommends that:


(i) While the first phase is being implemented, the United Nations in co-operation with the States directly involved, and the Palestine Liberation Organization as the interim representative of the Palestinian entity, should proceed to make the necessary arrangements to enable Palestinians displaced between 1948 and 1967 to exercise their right to return to their homes and property, in accordance with the relevant United Nations resolutions, particularly General Assembly resolution 194 (III);

(ii) Palestinians not choosing to return to their homes should be paid just and equitable compensation as provided for in resolution 194 (III).


III.
THE RIGHT TO SELF-DETERMINATION, NATIONAL INDEPENDENCE
AND SOVEREIGNTY

70. The Palestinian people has the inherent right to self-determination, national independence and sovereignty in Palestine. The Committee considers that the evacuation of the territories occupied by force and in violation of the principles of the Charter and relevant resolutions of the United Nations is a conditio sine qua non for the exercise by the Palestinian people of its inalienable rights in Palestine to their homes and property and with the establishment of an independent Palestinian entity, the Palestinian people will be able to exercise its rights to self-determination and to decide its form of government without external interference.

71. The Committee also feels that the United Nations has an historical duty and responsibility to render all assistance necessary to promote the economic development and prosperity of the Palestinian entity.

72. To these ends, the Committee recommends that:


(a) A time-table should be established by the Security Council for the complete withdrawal by Israeli occupation forces from those areas occupied in 1967; such withdrawal should be completed no later than 1 June 1977;

(b) The Security Council may need to provide temporary peace-keeping forces in order to facilitate the process of withdrawal;

(c) Israel should be requested by the Security Council to desist from the establishment of new settlements and to withdraw during this period from settlements established since 1967 in the occupied territories. Arab property and all essential services in these areas should be maintained intact;

(d) Israel should also be requested to abide scrupulously by the provisions of the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949, and to declare, pending its speedy withdrawal from these territories, its recognition of the applicability of that Convention;

(e) The evacuated territories, with all property and services intact, should be taken over by the United Nations, which with the co-operation of the League of Arab States, will subsequently hand over these evacuated areas to the Palestine Liberation Organization as the representative of the Palestinian people;

(f) The United Nations should, if necessary, assist in establishing communications between Gaza and the West Bank;

(g) As soon as the independent Palestinian entity has been established, the United Nations, in co-operation with the States directly involved and the Palestinian entity, should, taking into account General Assembly resolution 3375 (XXX), make further arrangements for the full implementation of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, the resolution of outstanding problems and the establishment of a just and lasting peace in the region, in accordance with all relevant United Nations resolutions;

(h) The United Nations should provide the economic and technical assistance necessary for the consolidation of the Palestinian entity.

ANNEX II

A.
Letter dated 18 April 1977 from the Chairman of the Committee to the Permanent Representative of Canada to the United Nations
I have the honour to inform you that on 15 April 1977 the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People held a meeting in the course of which its members noted certain statements concerning your Government's official position on the question of Palestine and the establishment of a just and lasting peace in the Middle East.

In this connexion, reference was made to the statement delivered by the representative of Canada on 24 November 1976 in the plenary of the United Nations General Assembly and, in particular, to the observation contained therein to the effect that the agreed framework for Middle East negotiations laid down in Security Council resolutions 242 (1967) and 338 (1973) "has in recent years been supplemented by a universal recognition of the political dimension of the Palestinian issue".

In my capacity as Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, I have been asked to request you to transmit to me any additional information which may be available to you concerning the current official position of the Government of Canada on the question of Palestine.


(Signed) Médoune FALL
Chairman of the Committee
on the Exercise of the Inalienable
Rights of the Palestinian People
I have the honour to inform you that on 15 April 1977 the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People held a meeting in the course of which its members noted certain statements concerning your Government's official position on the question of Palestine and the establishment of a just and lasting peace in the Middle East. In this connexion, reference was made, in particular, to the press conference given by the President of France, His Excellency Mr. Valery Giscard d'Estaing, at Cairo on 14 December 1975, in the course of which he said:


The attention of the Committee members was also drawn to the statement made by the Minister for Foreign Affairs of France, His Excellency Mr. Louis de Guiringaud, on 29 September 1976 in the plenary of the United Nations General Assembly and, in particular, to the following observations contained therein:


In my capacity as Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, I have been asked to request you to transmit to me any additional information which may be available to you concerning the current official position of the Government of France on the question of Palestine.


(Signed) Médoune FALL
Chairman of the Committee
on the Exercise of the Inalienable
Rights of the Palestinian People

I have the honour to inform you that on 15 April 1977 the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People held a meeting in the course of which its members noted certain statements concerning your Government's official position on the question of Palestine and the establishment of a just and lasting peace in the Middle East. In this connexions, reference was made to the statement delivered by the Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands, His Excellency Mr. van der Stoel, on 28 September 1976, on behalf of the nine members of the European Economic Community in the plenary of the United Nations General Assembly and, in particular, to the following observations contained therein:


The attention of the Committee members was also drawn to the press conference given by the Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany, His Excellency Mr. Helmut Schmidt, on 1 April 1977, in the course of which he stated that the Geneva Peace Conference should be resumed before the end of the year with the participation of the Palestinians.

In my capacity as Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, I have been asked to request you to transmit to me any additional information which may be available to you concerning the current official position of the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany on the question of Palestine.


(Signed) Médoune FALL
Chairman of the Committee
on the Exercise of the Inalienable
Rights of the Palestinian People

I have the honour to inform you that on 15 April 1977 the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People held a meeting in the course of which its members noted certain statements concerning your Government's official position on the question of Palestine and the establishment of a just and lasting peace in the Middle East. In this connexion, reference was made to the statement delivered by the Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands, His Excellency Mr. van der Stoel, on 28 September 1976, on behalf of the nine members of the European Economic Community, in the plenary of the United Nations General Assembly and, in particular, to the following observations contained therein:

In my capacity as Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, I have been asked to request you to transmit to me any additional information which may be available to you concerning the current official position of the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland on the question of Palestine.


(Signed) Médoune FALL
Chairman of the Committee
on the Exercise of the Inalienable
Rights of the Palestinian People


I have the honour to inform you that on 15 April 1977 the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People held a meeting in the course of which its members noted certain statements concerning your Government's official position on the question of Palestine and the establishment of a just and lasting peace in the Middle East. In this connexion, reference was made, in particular, to the statement delivered by the President of the United States of America, His Excellency Mr. Jimmy Carter, at Clinton on 16 March 1977, in which he said, inter alia:

The attention of the Committee members was also drawn to the statement made on 23 November 1976, on behalf of the United States of America, in the plenary of the United Nations General Assembly and, in particular, to the following observations contained therein:

In my capacity as Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, I have been asked to request you to transmit to me any additional information which may be available to you concerning the current official position of the Government of the United States of America on the question of Palestine.


(Signed) Médoune FALL
Chairman of the Committee
on the Exercise of the Inalienable
Rights of the Palestinian People


I have the honour to inform you that on 15 April 1977 the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People held a meeting in the course of which its members noted certain statements concerning your Government's official position on the Palestinian problem and the establishment of a just and lasting peace in the Middle East. In this connexion, reference was made to the speech delivered by the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Deputy Prime Minister of Israel, His Excellency Mr. Yigal Allon, on 16 February 1977 on the occasion of the dinner in honour of the Secretary of State of the United States of America and, in particular, to the statement contained therein to the effect that:

In my capacity as Chairman of -the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, I have been asked to request you to transmit to me any additional information which may be available to you concerning the current official position of the Government of Israel on the Palestinian question.


(Signed) Médoune FALL
Chairman of the Committee
on the Exercise of the Inalienable
Rights of the Palestinian People

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* Previously issued as part two of Official Records of the General Assembly, Thirty-first Session, Supplement No. 35 (A/31/35).
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