Press Release

Fifty-seventh General Assembly

Fifth Committee (Resumed)

55th Meeting (AM)


In a brief meeting this morning, the Fifth Committee (Administrative and Budgetary) heard the introduction of a draft resolution that would provide financing for the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) from 1 July 2003 to 30 June 2004.

Reporting to the Committee about the outcome of informal consultations on the text (document A/C.5/57/L.78), the Vice-chairman of the Committee, Guillermo Kendall (Argentina), said that, unfortunately, consensus had not been reached on some of its paragraphs and, thus, on the text on the whole, as well.  [The Committee’s practice is to adopt texts by consensus, but for several years the resolution on UNIFIL has required a vote.]

Introducing the text on behalf of the “Group of 77” developing countries and China, the representative of Morocco said that in several prior resolutions on the Mission -- the latest being resolution 56/214 B –- the Assembly had requested Israel to pay for the damage resulting from the incident at Qana on 18 April 1996.  According to the Secretary-General’s report on the matter (document A/57/663), however, Israel had not responded to that request.  The Group, therefore, was submitting the draft, which included paragraphs by the terms of which Israel must compensate the Force, as requested.  [According to paragraph 14 of the draft, the Assembly would stress once again that Israel shall pay the amount of some $1.12 million for that purpose.]

Action on the text will be taken tomorrow.

The Committee will meet at 3 p.m. Friday, 30 May, to conclude its second resumed session.

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