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67. The President drew attention to chapter I, section B, of the report, which contained a draft resolution entitled “Situation of assistance to Palestinian women”. The draft resolution had been adopted by the Commission by a recorded vote of 31 to 2, with 9 abstentions.
68. Ms. Phipps (United States of America) said that, as the draft resolution had been adopted by a recorded vote in the Commission, her delegation wished to request a recorded vote at the current meeting.
69. The President asked if any delegation wished to make a general statement.
70. Ms. Davidovich (Observer for Israel) said her delegation was dismayed that the Council was being forced to consider the draft resolution, an annual politically motivated initiative which, by focusing on only one group of women, ignored the needs of countless others who did not have powerful political blocs to lobby on their behalf. Moreover, it was misleading and one-sided, as it ignored a number of challenges that Palestinian women faced, such as the imposition by Hamas of restrictions on women’s freedoms. It also failed to note that Palestinian women had widely benefited from economic growth and from the fact that Israel allowed all goods that were not weapons or other war materiel into the Gaza Strip.
71. The draft resolution scapegoated Israel instead of addressing the situation on the ground, thus diminishing the Council’s credibility and reinforcing the sad reality that certain countries cared about the plight of women only if it could be used as a political weapon. Her Government continued to call for direct negotiations with the Palestinians in pursuit of a solution that would involve two States living side-by-side in peace and security, so as to improve the condition of Israeli and Palestinian women alike. She called on all countries to vote against the draft resolution.
72. Mr. Zeidan (Observer for Palestine) said that the Council, in its yearly resolution on the situation of Palestinian women, had consistently highlighted the repression, humiliation and lack of development suffered by Palestinian women under foreign Israeli occupation, which was now in its forty-third year. It also reaffirmed the rights of all women living under such occupation. Palestinian women were in a special situation in that their rights were violated every day by a State Member of the United Nations. Since the text of the draft resolution had been agreed upon by the Group of 77 and China, he urged all delegations to vote in favour of it.
73. A recorded vote was taken.