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About the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People
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        General Assembly
        Security Council

17 December 1986

Forty-first session
Agenda item 35
Forty-first year

Letter dated 16 December 1986 from the Chairman of the Committee on
the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People
addressed to the Secretary-General

In my capacity as Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, I wish to draw your urgent attention to the grave incidents which have continued to occur in the occupied Palestinian territories since the adoption by the Security Council of resolution 592 (1986).

You will recall that the Council met on 5 and 8 December last in response to the sudden deterioration of the situation in the occupied territories. On 4 December, Israeli soldiers had shot at defenceless Palestinian students demonstrating against the Israeli "iron fist" policy at Bir Zeit University,. killing two and wounding several others. A 14-year-old boy was shot and killed on 5 December during a demonstration at Balata refugee camp.

As a consequence, protest demonstrations have broken out throughout the Nest Bank and Gaza and are still continuing. Demonstrators have thrown up barricades, burned tires and thrown stones at armed Israeli patrols. The Israeli soldiers have responded with gunfire, killing more Palestinians and causing tens of injuries, many of them children. Hundreds have been arrested.

The following summary is to inform you of the most significant developments since the Council meeting:
    On 8 December, The New York Times reported that a Palestinian was shot in the leg during a demonstration at the town of Khan Yunis in the Gaza Strip. Israeli troops fired warning shots to disperse demonstrations at the towns of Bir Zeit, El Bireh and Bethlehem and the refugee camps of Daheisheh, El-Amari and Jalazoun. Demonstrations by Palestinian students in Jerusalem, Haifa and Tel Aviv were dispersed with tear gas.
    On 9 December, The New York Times reported that the old campus of Bir Zeit University was closed by the Israeli authorities until after the Christmas holidays. Israeli troops wounded four youths demonstrating at Balata refugee camp. A curfew was placed on the camp. Two other Palestinians were wounded by Israeli soldiers at villages near Jerusalem and Ramallah, which were placed under curfew.
    On 10 December, Associated Press reported that Israeli soldiers fired at Palestinian high-school student demonstrators in the Gaza City area, wounding a 16-year-old girl. A 16-year-old Palestinian was also shot in the head by an Israeli soldier at the Bureij refugee camp, and was reported in serious condition. Later, witnesses said the shooting was totally unprovoked. Another Palestinian teenager was wounded when Israeli troops fired at demonstrators at the Daheisheh refugee camp.
    Also on 10 December, the Palestinian news bulletin Jerusalem press reported that the Israeli authorities had closed several schools following the demonstrations, including two girls' schools in Jabalia refugee camp, the Polytechnic institute and Hebron University in Hebron.
    The same source reported that the Israeli forces have arrested a total of 580 Palestinians since 5 December, 32 of whom are from Jerusalem, 22 from Ramallah, 20 from Bethlehem, 175 from the Gaza Strip, 111 from Hebron and 220 from Nablus. In several instances, the troops had stormed hospitals and arrested Palestinians who had been brought there with bullet wounds. In Gaza, the troops were reported to have stormed the offices of the Red Cross to arrest demonstrators. According to The New York Times of 12 December, many of those arrested are teenagers and their parents have been unable to obtain information as to their whereabouts.
    On 14 December, The New York Times reported that a Palestinian had been wounded by Israeli soldiers during a demonstration at Jenin, and that demonstrators had been arrested in several towns and refugee camps.
In the light of these grave developments, I wish on behalf of the Committee on the Exercise of the inalienable Rights of the Palestinian people to stress that the actions of the Israeli authorities in the occupied territories are totally in violation of the Geneva Convention relative to the-Protection of Civilian persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949. In its resolution 592 (1986), the Security Council called upon Israel to abide immediately and scrupulously by the Convention and to release any person or persons detained as a result of the recent events in violation of the Convention. The "Committee earnestly appeals to you to do all in your power to ensure implementation of that resolution by the Israeli authorities, and to renew your efforts to promote a comprehensive, just and lasting solution to the question of Palestine in accordance with United Nations resolutions.

I should be grateful if you would arrange for the text of this letter to be circulated as a document of the General Assembly, under agenda item 35, and of the Security Council.

(Signed) Massamba SARRE
Committee on the Exercise of the
Inalienable Rights of the
Palestinian People


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