SUMMARY RECORD OF THE ONE HUNDRED AND FIFTY-EIGHTH MEETING
Held at the Palais des Nations, Geneva,
on Monday, 22 May 1950, at 11 a.m.
1. Replies from the parties to the Commission's Note of 11 May 1950
The CHAIRMAN said that the Commission had received replies to its Note of 11 May 1950 from the Governments of the Arab States and the Israeli Government. The Governments of Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria had sent the Commission a joint reply, while the Lebanese Government had also sent a separate reply to the Note, indicating its complete agreement with the decision of the Political Committee of the Arab League, and stating that Mr. Mikaoui was at the Commission’s disposal to give any further explanation that might be needed.
The Israeli Government, in its reply to the Commission’s Note, stated that the attitude of the Arab States to a peace settlement did not seem such as to justify sending representatives to Geneva.
The CHAIRMAN thought the Commission should take note of the replies, which might be followed by other separate replies from some of the Arab States, and should await further developments.
He read a telegram from Mr. Guimper concerning conversations he had had in Amman. It appeared that the Jordan Government approved the main lines of the reply from the Arab States.
Summing up, the CHAIRMAN expressed the view that the replies should be studied more thoroughly, and that the Commission should wait and see how the situation developed.
There was some discussion, in which the CHAIRMAN, Mr. de BOISANGER (France), Mr. ERALP (Turkey) and the PRINCIPAL SECRETARY took part, as to whether the press should be informed that the parties concerned had replied to the Commission’s Note of 11 May; and if so, whether they should be given details of the gist of the replies.
It was finally decided to answer inquiries from journalists with the statement that replies had been received to the Commission’s Note of 11 May and were being studied by the Commission,
2. Analysis of Paragraph 11 of the General Assembly Resolution of 11 December 1948 (Working Paper W/45)
The CHAIRMAN thought that the study prepared by the Secretariat was of real significance and threw valuable light on a number of important points. He maintained that in the matter of the refugees the Commission was still responsible for the questions of repatriation, resettlement, economic and social rehabilitation, and compensation. He suggested that a memorandum be prepared giving all the arguments and facts submitted by the Israeli Government to justify its negative attitude towards the return of the refugees.
It was decided that the Secretariat should prepare such a document.
Mr. ERALP (Turkey) pointed out that although the relief, resettlement and rehabilitation aspects of the refugee problem had been entrusted to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, the Commission was nevertheless under an obligation to keep a general eye on those questions.
Mr. de BOISANGER (France) asked whether the General Assembly Resolution setting up the United Nations Relief and Works Agency contained any wording relieving the Commission of its responsibilities.
The PRINCIPAL SECRETARY said that no such wording appeared in the General Assembly Resolution, and that the Commission remained fully responsible for the political aspects of the problem of repatriation and resettlement.
The CHAIRMAN felt that in that case the passage in Part II of Document W/45 referring to the Commission’s obligations might be drafted in more general terms to avoid giving the impression that there was such a precise division of labour.
It was so decided.
3. Cable to General Riley
The SECRETARY of the Commission read a cable to be sent to General Riley in reply to one of his reports to the Secretary-General (See SR/157).
The text of the cable was approved.
Réponses ds etats arabes/Israël de la rés. 194 sur la création de Comités mixtes; Réfugiés - 158e séance de UNCCP (Genève) - Compte rendu Français