Palestine question – GA 7th emergency special session (Opening) – Verbatim record

Seventh emergency special session



Held at Headquarters, New York,

on Tuesday, 22 July 1980, at 10.30 a.m.

Mr. SALIM (United Republic of Tanzania)

– Opening of the session by the President of the General Assembly /1/
 Minute of silent prayer or meditation /2/
 Organization of work 
Tribute to the memory of His Excellency Sir Seretse Khama, President of the Republic of Botswana
Scale of assessments for the apportionment of the expenses of the United Nations
Credentials of representatives to the seventh emergency special session of the General Assembly:
(a) Appointment of the members of the Credentials Committee
Adoption of the agenda /4/
– Statement by the President Question of Palestine /5/
 Request for inscription oh the list of speakers from the Secretary-General of the Islamic Conference

This record contains the original text of speeches delivered in English and interpretations of speeches in the other languages. The final text will be printed in the Official Records of the General Assembly.

Corrections should be submitted to original speeches only. They should be sent under the signature of a member of the delegation concerned, within one week, to the Chief of the Official Records Editing Section, Department of Conference Services, room A-3550, 866 United Nations Plaza, and incorporated in a copy of the record.

The meeting was called to order at 10.55 a.m.



The PRESIDENT: I declare open the seventh emergency special session of the General Assembly.



The PRESIDENT: I invite representatives to stand and observe one minute of silent prayer or meditation.

The representatives, standing, observed a minute's silence.


The PRESIDENT: With the permission of Members, I should like to draw the Assembly's attention to rule 63 of the rules of procedure, which states:

"Notwithstanding the provisions of any other rule and unless the General Assembly decides otherwise, the Assembly, in case of an emergency special session, shall convene in plenary meeting only and proceed directly to consider the item proposed for consideration in the request for the holding of the session, without previous reference to the General Committee or to any other committee; the President and Vice-Presidents for such emergency special sessions shall be, respectively, the chairmen of those delegations from which were elected the President and Vice-Presidents of the previous session."

I shall repeat the first part of that rule:

"Notwithstanding the provisions of any other rule and unless the General Assembly decides otherwise…".

If there is no objection, I shall take it that the General Assembly will proceed in accordance with that rule.

It was so decided.

The PRESIDENT: In accordance with that rule, I shall hope to have the assistance of the Vice-Presidents in the exercise of my duties during the present session.


The PRESIDENT: Nine days ago, on 13 July, the people of Botswana awoke to be confronted with the sad and shocking news of the most untimely death of their national leader, President Seretse Khama.

His death is an irreparable loss to the nation which Sir Seretse served with such distinction, commitment and ability; for the late President of Botswana not only successfully led the struggle for his country's freedom from colonial rule, he also provided it with exemplary and dedicated leadership from the time of its independence, in 1966.

President Khama served his people well and with utmost and selfless devotion. His name became the symbol of freedom, progress and stability. That he was able to maintain the independence and dignity of his country, despite the extremely difficult geographical and geopolitical situation of Botswana, was in itself a monumental achievement. But President Seretse Khama's role was far beyond that of a national leader. He was an African leader of great repute and enjoyed the continent's esteem and respect. He was also a statesman of international acclaim.

On the African scene, as one of the leaders of the front-line States, he played a key role in the Zimbabwe liberation struggle. He was a steadfast supporter of the Patriotic Front. His support was invaluable, whether in the conduct of the struggle or in the negotiations. His positive contribution to the Zimbabwe struggle was not without tremendous sacrifices. Botswana became a constant victim of harassment and outright aggression at the hands of the racist minority regime. Yet under his leadership the people and Government of Botswana remained firm and unwavering.

It is particularly tragic that President Seretse Khama died within months of the victory in Zimbabwe and at a time when his voice, his experience and his statesmanship are all the more needed as Africa and the world community focus their attention on the unsolved business of racial oppression in southern Africa.

Sir Seretse, the international statesman, will be remembered for charting a dynamic path for his country in the Organization of African Unity, in the Non-Aligned Movement, in the Commonwealth of Nations and, above all, in these very United Nations. He will be remembered equally for his constant championing of respect for the dignity and worth of man irrespective of colour, creed or ethnic background. He practised what he preached by building a non-racial and progressive society in Botswana.

Leaders of President Khama's calibre and stature are a great asset to the world community. Their deaths leave us all poorer. It is particularly distressing that Sir Seretse'a death has come at a time of great uncertainty and uneasiness on the international scene. His was certainly one powerful voice of moderation, reason and wisdom which will be missed during these disquieting times.

On behalf of the General Assembly, I wish to convey our heartfelt condolences to the delegation of Botswana and, through them, to the family of the late President and to the Government and the people of Botswana as they – and we – mourn this irreparable loss.

I invite representatives to rise and observe a minute of silence in tribute to the memory of Sir Seretse Khama.

The representatives, standing, observed a minute's silence.

Mr. LEGWAILA (Botswana): Mr. President, accept my gratitude, as well as that of the entire delegation of the Botswana Mission, for the kind words you have spoken, on behalf of this Assembly, about my late President and about our country. Indeed, the people of Botswana have lost a great leader; Africa has lost a commuted freedom fighter; the world at large has lost a man of peace.

The late President of Botswana died in the service of his people, his region and his continent. In pursuit of the noble ideals which he had set for his country and his people he was prepared to suffer in silence like a sacrificial lamb. And in the end, he died like a sacrificial lamb, content that while .he lived he had given the very best of his illustrious life to the cause of freedom, justice, peace and stability not only for his beloved Botswana but also for Africa and the world at large.

We mourn his passing because, as a people, we loved and revered him. He will forever remain a source of inspiration for us. The soul of our nation may have been seared by his sudden departure, but it has not been destroyed. No doubt, we feel tragically orphaned by his untimely demise, but my people will not allow themselves to surrender to the vagaries of fate and misfortune. Like soldiers of destiny, we are determined to march on towards the achievement of our hopes and aspirations, as embodied in the vision of Sir Seretse.

Botswana will continue to play its role in the affairs of nations. Our fidelity to the cause of freedom in southern Africa will remain unshakable. Our conviction that man is at peace with himself when he is free to decide his own destiny – to dream of and aspire to a better life in peace and freedom – remains as strong as ever. And therefore Botswana will remain a country in which people of all races, colours and creeds will continue to share a common humanity in a truly democratic society built on the footprints of that great man, His Excellency Sir Seretse Khama.

For our new President, His Excellency Mr. Quett Masire is equally a committed democrat with whom Sir Seretse founded the Botswana Democratic Party 16 years ago. Under his leadership we will pursue the noble dreams of Sir Seretse to their ultimate fulfilment.

May Sir Seretse's soul rest in peace.


The PRESIDENT: Before turning to the next item on our agenda, I should like, in keeping with the established practice, to invite the attention of the General Assembly to document A/ES-7/6, which contains a letter addressed to me by the Secretary-General in which he informs the Assembly that five Member States are in arrears in the payment of their financial contributions to the United Nations within the terms of Article 19 of the Charter.

In this connexion, I also wish to draw the Assembly's attention to the letter annexed to document A/ES-7/6, in which the Government of Chad has requested that its voting rights be maintained because its present failure to pay its arrears is due to circumstances beyond its control.

Rule 160 of the rules of procedure stipulates that the Committee on Contributions shall advise the General Assembly on the action to be taken with regard to the application of Article 19 of the Charter". However, such procedure is not possible in the present case in view of the very limited time available during the emergency special session. I suggest that the Assembly should return to this matter at the time of voting, when we shall know more specifically which Member States have been able to settle their arrears.




The PRESIDENT: We shall now proceed to the appointment of a Credentials Committee, as provided for in rule 28 of the rules of procedure.

With a view to expediting the work of the emergency special session and in accordance with precedents, it might be appropriate if the Credentials Committee were to consist of those Members which served during the thirty-fourth regular session, namely: Belgium, China, Congo, Ecuador, Pakistan, Panama, Senegal, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics and the United States of America.

If there is no objection, I shall consider the Credentials Committee constituted accordingly.

It was so decided.

The PRESIDENT: I should like to point out that the Secretary-General, in his note convening this emergency special session, has indicated that credentials for those representatives who are not already authorized to represent their Governments at all sessions of the General Assembly should be issued in accordance with rule 27 of the rules of procedure and may be presented by cable.



The PRESIDENT: The provisional agenda is contained in document A/ES-7/2. May I take it that the General Assembly adopts the provisional agenda.

The agenda was adopted.


The PRESIDENT: We are meeting today in this seventh emergency special session to discuss a problem which has most serious implications for the peace and security not only of the Middle East region but also of the world at large.

Yet, the problem of Palestine is not a new problem. It has constantly preoccupied the attention of the United Nations for more than three decades. It is an issue which is now universally accepted to be the core of the Middle E as conflict, a conflict in which four times since the inception of the United Nations the area has been in flames with devastating consequences for all the peoples of the region.

For several years the General Assembly has addressed itself specifically to the question of Palestine. For many more years the Assembly has discussed the question of the Middle East conflict in its entirety. Throughout these discussions, one factor has emerged as incontestable. This is that a just and lasting peace in the Middle East conflict requires a priori a just solution to the problem of Palestine.

It is one of the anachronisms of our Organization that, despite a clear and universal recognition of the nature of the problem and notwithstanding the many resolutions adopted by the United Nations in pursuit of a just solution, justice', which is a sine qua non of a lasting solution, has continued to elude the Palestinian people. Indeed, it is undeniable that the plight of the Palestinian people has been made worse by the events that have taken place in the occupied West Bank since the General Assembly last discussed the question.

The convening of the emergency special session testifies to the international community's awareness and recognition of the serious threat to peace and security that the deteriorating situation in the area poses. It is also a reaffirmation of the world community's conviction of the central nature of the Palestinian question in the resolution of the Middle East conflict.

This session, therefore, is confronted with enormous responsibilities and a. historic opportunity. The responsibilities are enormous because of the expectations of the peoples of the world that this Organization will live up to its principles and, above all, promote a genuine and lasting resolution of the conflict. Perhaps nowhere are such expectations greater and more justified than in the minds and hearts of the dispossessed Palestinian people. The opportunity is historic in the sense that, through constructive action, we can make a contribution to the resolution of the thorny problem before us. It is self-evident that this session can do so only by adhering to the principles of the Organization, as enshrined in the Charter, in scrupulous respect for international law.

It must be the objective of this session to put an end to the suffering of the Palestinian people by striving for a solution which will enable them to exercise their legitimate right to self-determination, including the right to establish an independent State of their own if they so choose. It must be the aim of this session to strive for the scrupulous application of the principle of the non-admissibility of the occupation of territory by force and, consequently, to strive for the total withdrawal of Israeli forces from the occupied Arab territories. It must also be the objective of this session to work for the creation of conditions whereby all States of the area will be guaranteed their independence.

In sum, the objective should be to secure a just and lasting settlement in the Middle East which will usher in a new era for the peoples of the area and, in the process, eliminate one of the most serious crisis points threatening international peace and security.

It is self-evident that, in the pursuit of this objective, the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), the representative of the Palestinian people, has an important role.

Those are not new principles; they constitute part and parcel of the many resolutions and decisions adopted by our Organization. Yet, the fact remains that those resolutions have remained unimplemented. Clearly, therefore, one of the challenges of this session is to work constructively and meaningfully for the implementation of these decisions.

As the situation in the Middle East has continued to deteriorate, there has been an even greater awareness – or, may I call it, consciousness – on the part of the nations of the world of the need to act in order to avoid further escalation with imponderable consequences. The agony and suffering of the Palestinian people has evoked not only greater world concern but, more importantly, a rising commitment and determination to pursue the path of justice, which can thus provide conditions of peace, freedom, stability and security for the region and for all its peoples.

This session can make an important contribution if it advances positively and constructively the international consensus in support of Palestinian legitimate rights, thus building a solid foundation for a just and lasting peace in the Middle East.

I cannot conclude my remarks without expressing my gratitude and appreciation of the high honour which the Assembly has once again both to my country and to me. I am confident that the support and co-operation extended to me during my presidency of the last session will be similarly extended as the General Assembly deliberates on this undoubtedly important and urgent question affecting international peace and security.



The PRESIDENT: The Assembly will now begin its consideration of the item that is before the emergency special session.


The PRESIDENT: Members of the General Assembly have before them document A/ES-7/5, which contains a request that the Secretary-General of the Islamic Conference be given an opportunity to address the Assembly in the course of the debate on the question before the emergency special session.

May I consider that, taking into account resolution 3369 (XXX) of 10 October 1975, by which the General Assembly granted observer status to the Islamic Conference, the Assembly accedes to that request?

It was so decided.

The PRESIDENT: Accordingly, at the appropriate moment, I shall invite the Secretary-General of the Islamic Conference to address the Assembly. I now call on the first speaker in the debate, the Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian people, His Excellency, Mr. Falilou Kane of Senegal.

Mr. KANE (Senegal) (Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People) (interpretation from French): Mr. President, permit me to tell you how pleased I am to see an illustrious son of Tanzania, a country devoted to the cause of peoples struggling for their national independence, preside over the proceedings of this emergency special session convened on the question of Palestine.

I have recently returned from your country, where the first regional seminar on the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people was held, and I am still under the spell of the charms of Tanzanian hospitality. Your country, by agreeing to host the seminar, has once again demonstrated its unswerving support for just causes.

I hope that under your presidency and with the competence that we all know you to possess, the current session will enable the cause of the Palestinian people to make new progress.

The convening of this special session of the General Assembly comes at a time when the situation in occupied Palestine is deteriorating day by day, at a time when the so-called peace talks are stalled and at a time when the United Nations seems to be unable to have a positive influence on the course of events.

Such a situation is fraught with danger for international peace and security, for a fire that is not quenched must spread. A benign cancer that is not treated spreads, becomes incurable and then fatal. The lack of a solution to the problem of Palestine can only help to accentuate the cycle of revolt and repression, the foreseeable consequence of which is escalation to a fifth Israeli-Arab war that may turn into a world conflict.

The United Nations would be failing in its duty today if it did not adopt effective measures to halt such a trend and to find a just solution to the problem of Palestine, as you have just said, Mr. President.

Unfortunately, today – whether we like it or not – the United Nations seems to be unable to act effectively. The United Nations body entrusted with the maintenance of international peace and security is paralysed by the misuse of the veto by one of its permanent members. Indeed, for nearly four years, the question of the recognition of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people has made no progress in the Security Council, because that permanent member refuses, on the one hand, to recognize the inalienable national rights of the Palestinian people and, on the other, to allow the United Nations to adopt decisions which might promote a peaceful settlement of the problem of Palestine.

That attitude is all the more deplorable as there exists today, within the international community, a broad consensus on the need to take account of the right to self-determination of the Palestinian people in any peace effort.

Confronted with a situation in which one State is preventing the Security Council from discharging its duties and is opposing the will of the international community, the non-aligned countries, in consultation with our Committee, decided to request that an emergency special session of the General Assembly be held. In paragraph 133 of their Final Declaration, the Heads of State or Government of Non-Aligned Countries, meeting in Havana, had decided:

"…that an emergency special session of the United Nations General Assembly should be convened, should the Security Council fail to act
because of a lack of unanimity among the permanent members of the Council." (A/34/542, ch.I, para, 133)

That possibility was fully justified when the Security Council had to adjourn its debate on the rights of the Palestinian people, on 30 April 1980, as a result of the veto of the United States. This was the third time since 1976 that that country had vetoed a draft resolution affirming the rights of the Palestinian people. Such an attitude to the rights of the Palestinian people can only envenom the situation in the field and lead to desperate acts with serious consequences for international peace and security.

The Committee also considered that the convening of this emergency special session was useful and timely. It lies within the powers of our Assembly, which encompasses all nations. Moreover, in the past, resolution 377 (V) has enabled us to defuse serious crises which, owing to the paralysis of the Security Council, could have led to a disruption of peace.

The Committee hopes that this emergency special session will be aimed essentially at promoting the cause of peace by adopting concrete measures to support the implementation of the rights of the Palestinian people.

The question of the recognition of the implementation of the national rights of the Palestinian people has always been at the core of the Middle East conflict. That truth is now recognized by the overwhelming majority of the international community.

The United Nations 5 which at one time had adopted an approach that did not take into account the national rights of the Palestinian people, has been taking steps to correct that error for more than a decade now.

The United Nations General Assembly has thus adopted several resolutions defining the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people and calling for their implementation.

The Security Council, for its part, has unfortunately been unable to adopt the same approach because of the well-known attitude of some of its members.

In 1975 the General Assembly established the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, the mandate of which includes, inter alia, the preparation of recommendations on the implementation of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people. Those recommendations were to be submitted to the Security Council for adoption and implementation. The Council has however never been in a position to adopt a positive decision on them because of the opposition of one permanent member.

To date the recommendations of the Committee which were endorsed by the General Assembly have been considered by the Security Council four times already: in 1976, in 1977, in June and August 1979 and finally for a fourth time in March-April 1980. The scenario has always been the same: a majority of the States members of the Council, composed of non-aligned and socialist countries, supported the recommendations; one permanent member – in this instance, the United States – was opposed, and the other members abstained.

When for the first time the Committee presented its recommendations to the Security Council, it expected that the Council would only take note of them and would affirm the rights of the Palestinian people as defined by the General Assembly. Despite that somewhat limited and moderate objective, a permanent member felt it necessary to prevent the Council from adopting a decision on the draft resolution presented by the group of non-aligned countries members of the Council by casting a veto.

Our Committee, the main aim of which has been to work positively to achieve the implementation of the rights of the Palestinian people, did not allow this to prevent it from continuing its efforts. Throughout its existence it has adopted an open attitude of co-operation. It has always stated that it was ready to listen to all the parties to the conflict, including Israel. Some States however chose to boycott the proceedings of the Committee in the hope of impeding the advance of the Palestinian cause. The result was to delay a global settlement; for the refusal of the dialogue cannot lead to a peaceful settlement of the problem of Palestine of which all of us here in the United Nations – except perhaps for a few – are in favour.

No one can state that the Committee has not demonstrated co-operation and understanding. During the debates in the Security Council in 1977 and 1979 concerning the question cf Palestine, the Committee twice agreed to the request of a permanent member which wished the Council to postpone its decision on the rights of the Palestinian people. That Member did not want such a decision to have a negative impact on the peace efforts that were then under way. The then Chairman of the Committee, my friend and predecessor Ambassador Fall, each time demonstrated the Committee's determination to do everything possible to encourage peace efforts to settle the problem of Palestine. It was thus that he accepted with good grace the postponement of the Council's decision on the General Assembly's recommendation, despite the urgency of the question of Palestine. The Committee's Chairman also told his interlocutors that in no case whatsoever could the Committee accept a sine die postponement of consideration of the problem of Palestine. The time for reflection that had been granted was to be put to useful purpose by the Members concerned, so that positive proposals could be submitted, leading towards recognition of the national rights of the Palestinian people.

Unfortunately, the Committee has had to note that its patience and goodwill have not always been understood and rewarded. Those who each time requested that the Council postpone its decisions seemed to have no aim other than to delay adoption of a decision and thus prevent the Council from acting. After having demonstrated much patience, the Committee decided, in accordance with resolution 34/65 A, to request the Security Council once again to consider the question of Palestine in March 1980.

The proposals contained in the draft resolution prepared by the Committee and submitted by Tunisia were in consonance with the recommendations adopted by the Security Council and the General Assembly on settlement of the conflict in the Middle East. Moreover, that draft respected the legitimate rights of all the parties to the conflict, including Israel. Once again, the United States cast a veto and refused any dialogue whatsoever.

The Committee's efforts to have the Security Council endorse the rights of the Palestinian people were thus impeded once again, despite the fact that the rights of the Palestinian people are supported by the overwhelming majority of the Members of our Organization. The non-aligned countries, the countries members of the Organization of African Unity, the socialist countries and the members of the Islamic Conference have always supported, and continue to support, the recommendations of the General Assembly concerning the rights of the Palestinian people.

Since the casting of the veto in the Security Council on 30 April 1980 the most highly respected international organizations have reaffirmed the entitlement of the Palestinian people to exercise its right to self-determination through its legitimate representative, the Palestine Liberation Organization, the only body empowered to negotiate in its name. That is true of the Islamic Conference, at its eleventh session, held from 17 to 22 May 1980 in Islamabad; the Summit of Heads of State or Government of the countries of the European Economic Community, held in Venice on 12 and 13 June 1980: and the seventeenth Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Organization of African Unity, which was recently concluded in Freetown, having been held from 1 to 4 July 1980.

Those organizations once again, moreover, reiterated the relevant decisions of the Organization of African Unity, which state that the Palestinian cause is both Arab and African, and reaffirmed their support for the exercise by the Palestinian people of its inalienable rights. In Venice, the countries members of the Economic Community supported the Palestinian people's right to self-determination. Some members of that group of countries went even further and wished an initiative to be taken to supplement Security Council resolution 242 (1967).

In truth, the inappropriateness of resolution 242 (1967) as the framework for a comprehensive settlement of the Middle East problem has become increasingly obvious. That resolution is in particular silent concerning the rights of the Palestinian people, which it erroneously turns into a simple refugee problem.

A problem as old and as serious as that of Palestine must be approached in such a way as to ensure that a just solution can be found, a solution that will take into consideration the legitimate rights of all the interested parties. Today everybody is in agreement in recognizing that the question of Palestine lies at the core of the Middle East conflict. Without a solution of the Palestinian problem, no solution of the Middle East problem is possible. Therefore, a resolution that would supplement resolution 2442 (1967) should in the view of our Committee include, inter alia, the rights that the General Assembly has recognized as belonging to the Palestinian people – that is, the right to self-determination, national independence and the creation of a sovereign State in Palestine, and the right of the refugees to return to their country.

Today there is a wide political support for such an enterprise. Only one member of the Security Council and Israel continue to oppose it. The representatives of those two countries argue that tripartite negotiations are the only possible choice in the search for peace in the Middle East. Oar Committee, however, considers that a solid edifice must always rest upon secure foundations. That is not true of the negotiations on Palestine, which do not have the support of a considerable number of States of the region, and, what is even more serious, they exclude the Palestinians, who are most directly concerned.

The assertion that such talks are the only possibility in the search for peace does not, in the Committee's view, show much realism.

With regard to the tripartite talks, the Committee has acted in accordance with resolution 33/28 A, in which the General Assembly states that: the validity of agreements purporting to solve the problem of Palestine requires that they be within the framework of the United Nations and its Charter and its resolutions on the basis of the full attainment and exercise of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, including the right of return and the right to national independence and sovereignty in Palestine, and with the participation of the Palestine Liberation Organization".

The Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, which has frequently affirmed its support for any peace effort that would settle the problem of Palestine on the basis of relevant United Nations resolutions, is, however, unable to subscribe to an enterprise that is designed to deprive the Palestinians of their inalienable national rights.

The international community must be tireless in pointing out to Israel the illegality of the many acts which have marked its existence, namely: its persistent occupation of Arab and Palestinian territories; its acquisition of territory by force, which is inadmissible; the establishment of settlements in those territories; its serious and repeated violations of the Fourth Geneva Convention of 12 August 1949 relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of liar; the de facto annexation of the city of Jerusalem and the ensuing violation of its historical and religious character; its violation of the human rights of the Palestinian people by attempted assassinations, expulsions and the humiliation of their elected leaders, in contravention of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights; and other illegal acts which I shall not mention.

With the support of the United States, Israel is acting as if, alone and against the whole world, it could achieve its biblical dreams by territorial expansion and domination of the entire region. By force and intimidation, by a policy of faits accomplis, Israel thinks that, alone, it will prevail against the majority in this Assembly.

The current Israeli leaders, who often talk about history but have perhaps understood nothing about it, and who think they will be able to subjugate the Arabs and Palestinians by the force of arms, must remember that far more powerful and extensive empires have crumbled precisely where they wish to impose their domination today and that Napoleon, who throughout his life fought real battles, won wars and conquered peoples, and distant lands, finally recognized:

"There are only two powers in the world, the sword and the spirit. In the long run the sword will always be overcome by the spirit."

Mr. Naum Goldmann, former President of the World Jewish Congress, expressed a similar concern when he stated, in an article published in issue No. 1009 of Jeune Afrique, of 7 May 1980:

"The international community is outraged and bitter at seeing this small, heroic and determined country creating a situation which might well lead the world to a new conflagration.

"Here lies the essential problem related to the. survival of Israel. The Jews must once again challenge the world in the realm of ideas and of eternal values rather than by battles waged for borders or territories. That need is felt more and more in Israel. In that awareness, and in increased moderation in the Arab world, lies the hope for a true peace."

In its resolution 34/65 A of 29 November 1979, the General Assembly expressed its regret and concern that the recommendations of the Committee endorsed by the General Assembly in numerous resolutions had not been implemented and it once again urged the Security Council to consider and take a decision on those recommendations. In addition, the Assembly requested the Committee, in the event of the Security Council failing to consider or to take a decision on those recommendations by 31 March 1980, to consider the situation and to make the suggestions it deemed appropriate. The hopes in that regard were dashed on 30 April 1980, with the veto by the United States in the Security Council.

It is appropriate to recall that the Charter of the United Nations contains provisions for a broad range of collective coercive measures to ensure the implementation of United Nations resolutions. It should also be recalled that on certain occasions the Security Council warned that it intended to act in implementation of the Charter. Thus, in its resolution 54 (1948) of 15 July 1948, the Security Council declared that the failure by any of the Governments concerned to comply with its order to desist from military action in Palestine would lead it to take such further action under Chapter VII of the Charter as it might deem appropriate. Similarly, in the numerous resolutions in which it condemned the armed attacks of Israel against its neighbours, the Security Council warned that in the event of such acts being repeated, it would have to consider new and more effective measures under the Charter; the resolutions in question are Security Council resolutions 111 (1956), 223 (1966), 248 (1968), 256 (1968) and 265 (1969). Although Israel took no heed of those warnings but, on the contrary, renewed its attacks and acts of aggression, the Security Council has taken no coercive measure against that country to bring it to heel. The reason for that is well known – there is no need for me to dwell on it.

The measure which has come closest to coercion is the recommendation made by the General Assembly to Member States in some of its resolutions, for example 3092 (XXVIII), 3240 (XXIX), 33/113 and 34/90 (which was a recommendation to suspend military or economic assistance to Israel, so long as that country continued to occupy Arab territories and refused to recognize the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people). Moreover, it may be recalled that on 1 March 1980 the Security Council for the first time decided, in its resolution 465 (1980), to call upon all States "not to provide Israel with any assistance to be used specifically in connexion with settlements in the occupied territories." That kind of economic sanction, however, proved ineffective because the principal supplier of arms and capital to Israel, namely, the Government of the United States, is not prepared to cut off economic and military assistance to its protege. In a statement made on 23 August 1977, President Carter ruled out the possibility of suspending economic or military assistance to exert pressure on Israel, so as to compel that country to withdraw from the territories occupied since 1967.

It is therefore obvious that the question of Palestine has to date eluded resolution by mediation, conciliation, or the adoption of mere resolutions. The most illustrious mediators and the most patient conciliators have been unable to attain a concrete result. Over 250 resolutions have left the situation entirely unchanged. The consistent attitude of Israel has always been to reject and to flout United Nations resolutions, frequently insolently and arrogantly. Moreover appeals, censures, expressions of regret or condemnation have been completely ineffective in ensuring the implementation of United Nations resolutions. It is our belief that only coercion can achieve that end. At the time of the Suez attack, Israel trampled under foot the resolutions of the General Assembly calling for its withdrawal from the territories it had occupied, and even President Eisenhower was moved to state:

"The United Nations has no choice other than to exert pressure on Israel so that it will act in accordance with the resolutions calling for its withdrawal."

Pressure proved to be successful, and Mr. John Davis, for several years the High Commissioner of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), also reached the conclusion that in the final analysis, one must be ready to impose coercive measures on Israel against its will". That can be found on page 107 of his book The Evasive Peace, published in London by John Murray in 1968.

Recourse to coercion, therefore, becomes inevitable and indeed necessary if we are to implement United Nations resolutions on Palestine. As opposed to international law, which, except in the case of war and acts of reprisal, lacks a means to ensure implementation of its rules, the United Nations Charter, in the fashion of the Covenant of the League of Nations, established a system of collective measures in its Chapter VII, some of which involve the use of force.

In accordance with Article 24 of the Charter, the Member States of the United Nations entrusted the Security Council with the major responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security. Before deciding what measures should be adopted and whether those measures should involve the use of armed force, the Security Council must, under Article 39, determine the existence of any threat to the peace, breach of the peace, or act of aggression.

With regard to Palestine, the Security Council already made such a determination in its resolution 54 (1948), of 15 July 1948, which was adopted in the wake of the first hostilities between Israel and the Arab States. That resolution has been recalled in a number of subsequent resolutions: Security council resolutions 56 (1948), 59 (1948), 61 (1948), 62 (1948), 73 (1949), 92 (1951), 93 (1951), 101 (1953), 106 (1955) and 171 (1962). It stated that the situation in Palestine constituted a threat to the peace in the terms of Article 39 of the Charter, and in paragraph 8 the Security Council decided that the truce which had been called for should remain in force:

"until a peaceful adjustment of the future situation of Palestine is reached'. (Security Council resolution 54 (1948)

However, that desirable result has not been achieved because since that time new wars have taken place – in 1956, 1967 and 1973; more territory has been conquered, and more refugees have been displaced. Hence resolution 54 (1948) is still in force, and there need be no new determination of the existence of a threat to the peace or of a breach of the peace by the Security Council.

Recent events, among them the attempted assassination of Mayors and Palestinian elected officials and the expulsion of those persons from the West Bank, in violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention of 12 August 1949, corroborate this fact.

The Security Council has not taken coercive measures, essentially because of the attitude of the United States Government, which has opposed the idea that the United Nations should have recourse to sanctions or any other form of constraint against Israel. This has not always been the case, as we have seen, for in 1956 Israel did withdraw from territory it was occupying at the time, in response to pressure exerted by the United States and Soviet threats.

The United States has abused its right of veto on the question of Palestine. Since 1967 the United States attitude towards Israel's actions and aggressive acts has become so categorical that it sometimes seems to imply acquiescence. For example, in 1967, it was thanks to the American vote that Israel was not condemned by the General Assembly as an aggressor, even though its aggression had been flagrant and undeniable. In addition, the United States prevented the adoption of a draft resolution calling for Israel's immediate and unconditional withdrawal from the territories it was occupying at the time. The various vetoes, which I have recalled, were exercised on 10 September 1972, 8 December 1975, 25 March 1976, 29 June 1976 and, most recently, on 30 April 1980.

The reason often advanced by the United States to explain its exercise of the right of veto is that the draft resolutions proposed are not "balanced". That is hardly convincing. The actual reason is that since 1975 the United States has been exercising its right of veto in support of Israel not on the basis of an objective evaluation of the proposals submitted to the Security Council, but in pursuance of the prior commitment entered into by the United States Government to align its position in the Security Council with that of Israel. This astonishing subordination of a super-Power to Israel's wishes stems from the commitment made by Henry Kissinger in a memorandum of agreement which he negotiated with Israel on behalf of the United States Government at the time of the Egyptian-Israeli agreement of 1 September 1975. Article of that memorandum states as follows:

"The United States Government will vote against any draft resolution in the Security Council which might in its view affect the agreement or go against it."

In another memorandum of agreement concluded on the same date, it is stated that:

"The United States will, in the Security Council, oppose any initiative to modify the mandate of the Geneva Conference unfavourably or to amend resolutions 242 (1967) and 338 (1973) in any manner incompatible with their initial purpose, and will, if necessary, vote against any such initiative."

That is not all. Article 5 of a memorandum of agreement concluded on 26 March 1979 between those two countries, in connexion with the Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty of the same date, stipulates as follows:

"The United States will oppose at the United Nations any measure or draft resolution which in its view could have an unfavourable effect on the peace treaty, and will, if necessary, vote against any such measure or draft resolution."

As we know indeed it is obvious – that was aimed at the initiatives envisaged by the countries of the European Economic Community (EEC) to amend

It may thus be expected that the United States will continue to veto all Security Council attempts to implement United Nations resolutions on Palestine or to have recourse to coercive measures against Israel under Chapter VII of the Charter.

More recently, in a televised interview on 1 January 1980, President Carter threatened to use the veto to oppose any attempt to amend resolution 242 (1967), as a number of countries had envisaged. In his words,

"We will oppose any attempt at the United Nations to infringe the sacred nature of resolution 242 (1967) or to modify its present form. We have the right of veto which we can exercise, if necessary, to prevent any sabotage of the Camp David negotiations, and I shall not hesitate to exercise that right if necessary."

That said, in view of the well-established fact that Israel continues to violate the basic rights of the Palestinians living in Israel and in the occupied territories, how can we accept the statement made by the same American President at the commemoration of the thirtieth anniversary of the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights on 6 December 1978? I refer to his statement in the periodical Foreign Affairs, the issue of Spring 1980, page 790, which reads as follows:

(spoke in English):

"As long as I am President, the Government of the United States will continue throughout the world to enhance human rights. No force on earth can separate us from that commitment.

(continued in French):

The contradiction between that statement and the facts is as clear as day; there is no need for me to dwell upon it.

In these circumstances, the United States veto, like the sword of Damocles, hangs over the Palestinian issue every time it arises in the Security Council. We are entitled to ask ourselves whether, in this matter, the United States is not contravening Article 24 (2) of the United Nations Charter which states that:

"In discharging these duties" namely, its responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security – "the Security Council shall act in accordance with the purposes and principles of the United Nations".

This obligation applies collectively to the Security Council and, a fortiori, it applies to each member, in particular to each permanent member, which is what the United States is.

This is not the first time that the problem of a paralysing veto has arisen in the Security Council in connexion with an international crisis. The General Assembly found a remedy at the time of the Korean war – incidentally, at the initiative of the United States. We do not often recall this, but on this occasion we have to.

On 3 November 1950, the General Assembly adopted resolution 377 A (V), entitled "Uniting for peace". It has also been called the Dean Acheson resolution, since at the time he was the United States Secretary of State. In operative paragraph 1 of that resolution it states- that

"The General Assembly,
"1. Resolves that if the Security Council, because of lack of unanimity of the permanent members, fails to exercise its primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security in any case where there appears to be a threat to the peace, breach of the peace, or act of aggression, the General Assembly shall consider the matter immediately with a view to making appropriate recommendations to Members for collective measures, including in the case of a breach of the peace or act of aggression the use of armed force when necessary, to maintain or restore international peace and security". (General Assembly resolution 377 A (V)).

Some Members challenged the soundness of that resolution, both procedurally and in its substance and today we expect that those same Members will raise the same objections to that resolution.

But we believe that the adoption of that resolution was justified by the very terms of Article 1 of the Charter whereby the United Nations, inter alia, undertook to take effective collective measures for the prevention and removal of threats to the peace, and for the suppression of acts of aggression. The resolution was also justified by Article 21 of the Charter which states that Members of the United Nations confer on the Security Council "primary responsibility" for the maintenance of international peace and security and agree that in carrying out its duties under this responsibility the Security Council acts on their behalf. It is clear that the Security Council is acting on the authority delegated to it by the Members of the United Nations. It is also acting in keeping with the general principles of law whereby in the case where a mandatary to which powers have been delegated is unable to exercise those powers those who"have mandated such powers to it – in this case, the Members of the United Nations – are entitled to take collective measures.

The careful research work done by Professor Hans Kelsen in The Law of the United Nations, published in London in 1951 and by Professor Henry Cattan in his book Palestine and International Law, published by Longman, second edition, in 1976 in London and New York, provides clear proof that the General Assembly, which delegates its authority to the Security Council, is fully entitled and has the power to carry out this mission itself in cases when its mandatary, the Security Council, fails to do so.

Moreover, recourse has been had to resolution 377 A (V) on several occasions. I have already referred to the case of the Korean War, but there was also the case of the 1956 Arab-Israeli war. Since the Security Council was not able to take action because of vetoes by France and the United Kingdom, which had intervened in the Suez affair on the side of Israel, an emergency special session of the General Assembly was convened in November 1956, in the course of which the Assembly adopted several resolutions calling for a cease-fire and the withdrawal of the British, French and Israeli armed forces. Moreover, the General Assembly established the United Nations Emergency Force (UNEF), which was to ensure and to supervise the cease-fire. There is another case that I must recall., namely, that of 1960 in connexion with events in the former Belgian Congo.

In all those cases the direct intervention of the General Assembly proved effective and it adopted decisions that were then implemented. On three occasions the General Assembly did not simply make recommendations; it took decisions that had to be implemented. This point is worth recalling and emphasizing.

The Charter and the practice of the United Nations thus enable the General Assembly to overcome a veto of one or more permanent members of the Security Council which may seek to block implementation of resolutions of the United Nations on Palestine.

Accordingly, we feel that the United Nations legally has every right to take coercive measures to ensure respect for its resolutions on Palestine and to re-establish its credibility as an international organization capable of effective action.

Has the time not come for the United Nations to take steps to ensure that it is respected by its own Members and by international public opinion by putting itself in a position where it is able to apply the provisions of its Charter and to implement its resolutions?

No one now can fail to realize, first, that resolution 242 (1967) – which some continue to regard as sacred, although the very ones who cling to it have failed to apply all its provisions – does not contain any proposal for a comprehensive political solution of the Palestinian issue. What is more serious is that there is a major omission which is a kind of original sin in that resolution, since it refers to the Palestinians as simple "refugees" and not as a people. Secondly, the Camp David agreements – in particular its formula of "autonomy" – because it was concluded outside the United Nations, because it was rejected by the Palestinians, the main party involved, and because it proposes to determine the future of the Palestinian people without their consent or their participation in the negotiations cannot lead to the just and comprehensive peace we seek in the Middle East.

Mr. Nahum Goldmann, former President of the World Jewish Congress, in an essay published in Jeune Afrique on 7 May 1980, wrote:

"The Egyptian-Israeli agreement has divided the Arab world. In time of war, inter-Arab dissensions help Israel, but when it is a question of reaching peace, then Arab unity becomes necessary because no separate peace that includes only part of the Arab world can last".

What solution, then, remains to be advocated? Self-sacrifice, conciliation, resolutions – more than 250 of them so far – none of these have had any result. Logically, there is only one solution: the one provided for since the beginning of the conflict by General Assembly resolutions 181 (II), 194 (III) and 303 (IV), subsequently complemented, as we know, by a whole range of resolutions adopted both by the Security Council and by the United Nations General Assembly.

This, indeed, is the only way of rendering justice – however little – to the Palestinians and of arriving at a comprehensive, peaceful solution of the conflict. And by returning to the solution advocated from the start, the United Nations would in no way be reversing itself.

This clearly implies that Israel, in conformity with resolutions of the Security Council and the General Assembly, would withdraw from all territories occupied since the partition of Palestine: territories occupied by force as a result of the many Arab-Israeli wars, or subsequently occupied illegally by the insidious policy of Jewish settlements.

The city of Jerusalem is not exempt from this. Its international status, recognized by General Assembly resolution 181 (II), must be applied to make it into a corpus separatum. This status alone will permit it to retain its character as the Holy City, open to all religions, as well as its historical and Arab character. No other status would be acceptable to Christians and Moslems throughout the world, for whom Jerusalem is more than a symbol; it is a part of them that is, of their deepest religious beliefs.

From this viewpoint we believe that the General Assembly must authorize the Secretary-General to take the necessary measures to supervise Israel°s withdrawal from the territories involved and from Jerusalem, and to arrange, with the aid of the specialized agencies and of humanitarian organizations such as the International Red Cross, for the repatriation of the Palestinian refugees who clearly wish to return to their homeland.

Of course, all this can be achieved without recourse to the enforcement measures provided for in the Charter and in resolution 377 (V), if this time

the Israeli side is motivated by good will and, above all, if it finally agrees to be a Semitic State living amongst the Semites of the region.

But it is understood that recourse to Chapter VII of the Charter cannot be totally excluded. In the event of Israel's reluctance or refusal to follow the decision that will be taken by the present General Assembly session, the Assembly will finally have to have recourse to the provisions of the Charter and of General Assembly resolution 377 (V) in order to decree and to impose collective measures against it.

The most distinguished jurists in the field of international law have demonstrated that the Charter provides legal means for the General Assembly, which therefore has the competence to use them. Lacking to date has been firm determination to find a solution to the question of Palestine, which becomes graver by the day.

As Professor Cattan wrote in a communication to the seminar we recently held in Arusha on Palestinian rights.

"One must certainly wonder if the United Nations can go back 30 years to apply its resolutions, but it must not be forgotten that, as far as they are concerned, the Jews exhumed the State of Israel from the dust of history after 3,000 years."

And on that point I conclude.

The PRESIDENT: I now call upon the Rapporteur of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People.

Mr. GAUCI (Malta), Rapporteur, Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People: Without minimizing the importance of other serious questions of international concern, I believe that few will deny that the question of Palestine within the Middle East equation is of transcending importance to our Organization, to the prospects of war or peace and to the fate of the people concerned.

Particularly on this occasion I believe that our consideration of this question should focus, objectively and dispassionately, on highlighting the most significant elements and trends of opinion that clearly emerge from the constant concentration on this question since the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People was established. We could then analyse the two major options that have been advanced to promote a solution and determine which of the two is most responsive to the aspirations of the people concerned, to the decisions of this Organization and to the prospects of peace.

We need a new atmosphere in our discussions for the task ahead of us; we will all be the losers if we fail to provide it.

If we want – as we therefore should – to obtain a significant outcome from this emergency special session, then we should set our minds not on the unfortunate hostility which has divided the region in the past but rather on a realistic assessment of the potential for progress that does appear to exist, despite the most adverse circumstances. We have the opportunity to make of this session an overdue turning point in the turbulent history of the Middle East.

In brief, our objective should be to select, calmly and collectively, the most appropriate path along which, while respecting the past, we may genuinely attempt to remove impediments which have endured as obstacles to progress. This would represent the start of a promising dialogue which would in turn help to remedy old grievances and would give us clearer vision for the future. Finally, we should constantly bear in mind that we are here concentrating on promoting the practical attainment of the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people. That is the fundamental aspect and the raison d'etre of this debate.

That aspect takes us back in history at least as far as the end of the First World War. International opinion at that time favoured the Wilsonian principle of the self-determination of peoples, based on the consent of the governed, and with the help and encouragement of advanced nations assuming a "sacred trust of civilization".

The people of Palestine were at that time found eligible for self-determination and were in fact given the status of a "Class A" Mandate. In the hallowed tradition of the United Nations – in perhaps the brightest chapter in its history – self-determination has traditionally been associated with political independence. The international community has not abandoned this goal. On the contrary, it has consistently encouraged its pursuit as a peaceful process.

Yet, in the case of the Palestinian people there seems to have been at the time – and there still seems to be today – political connivance to prevent the people being consulted or their wishes determined. As a result, the Palestinian people to this very day are among the few still struggling to achieve their political independence.

The United Nations decided to remedy that situation and created the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People. This committee was born in 1975, in the same year that the Helsinki Final Act was signed. In Helsinki the concept of detente found detailed expression and respect for human rights was elevated to a political principle of international law and friendly relations among States. The Helsinki Final Act contains the latest negotiated definition of the principle of equal rights and self-determination of peoples, agreed to after two years of debate by all European countries together with Canada, the United States and the Soviet Union. It reads as follows:

"By virtue of the principle of equal rights and self-determination of peoples, all peoples always have the right, in full freedom, to determine, when and as they wish, their internal and external political status, without external interference, and to pursue as they wish their political, economic, social and cultural development.

"The participating States reaffirm the universal significance of respect for and effective exercise of equal rights and self-determination of peoples for the development of friendly relations among themselves as among all States., they also recall the importance of the elimination of any form of violation of this principle." (Final Act of the Conference on Security and Co-operation in Europe, Section VIII)

That detailed definition inspired, and accurately describes, with particular emphasis, what the Committee attempted to initiate in practical measures, free from the pressure of immediate events, almost five years ago. That was in the form of specific recommendations made by the Committee. It is the first approach we have to reconsider today.

The recommendations of the Committee are by now so well known and so widely accepted that I do not need to recall them. In any case, the Chairman of our Committee has already done so and given an account of the constant efforts of the Committee for a start to be made in having the recommendations translated into practice.

But so far, through no fault of the Committee, we have failed in this respect, although we can derive some consolation from the fact that the history of Palestine and the objectives of the Committee are now much more widely known to influential public opinion through the film and studies issued by the Unit and through the talks and seminars which have been organized to date.

Mr. President, it was only last Thursday that we concluded our first seminar in your beautiful country. A panel of experts from various countries presented stimulating papers on several aspects of the Palestinian question and, after animated discussion, a wide convergence of views emerged, which will be reflected in a report to be published. I was as pleased to visit your country last week as I am today at seeing you presiding over this session. I also wish to express my agreement with the thrust of your opening statement.

The Committee will hold another seminar next month, and more are, planned for the years to come. We have found this to be necessary in order to counter the irresponsibly erroneous information constantly promulgated by the mass media on this question. The favourable reaction of our audiences to the studies compiled, to the information provided and to the proposals advocated by the Committee has been a great source of encouragement to its members is has strengthened our conviction that, with goodwill on all sides, a peaceful resolution of the Palestinian problem is possible and that a start should no longer be delayed.

The Committee also derived encouragement from the steady growth of international recognition of the legitimate claims of the Palestinian people. Recently the countries of the European Community, which had hesitated in the past, felt the need to add their influential collective voice to those urging progress and came out with their important declaration at the Venice Summit. This was the considered outcome of intensive study by the best qualified experts in those countries.

By contrast, and by way of example, the reaction of the mass media in the United States to the European initiative is the latest indictment of the shameless local press coverage of the human drama of the Palestinian people. The New York Times, for instance, superficially dismissed the studied Western European initiative in an editorial on 15 June 1980, which it entitled "A Minor-League Mideast Game". The content of that editorial unfortunately only shows the shallow bias of its policy on this question. That was typical of the indifference and the distortion which the Committee has patiently tried to overcome in the past five years.

The concentration on the Palestinian problem coincided with the birth of the new awareness of human rights largely engendered by the signing of the Helsinki Final Act. We noted with concern that the protagonists of the human rights campaign raised their collective voice to a crescendo over the plight of a comparatively few dissidents in Eastern Europe, in the Middle East, however, the repression of an entire people raised hardly an official whisper of protest, let alone any effective action.

But, as repression in the territories illegally occupied by Israel increased, so in equal measure was the matter forcibly brought to the attention of the United Nations, and today we are very near to an overwhelming international consensus on a definition of the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people. We have not yet, however, agreed on an appropriate mechanism which can translate that international consensus into a measured but effective programme of implementation.

I should like respectfully to point out that, against the background I have outlined, the recommendations of the Committee have stood the test of time, retaining their validity and attracting steadily increasing support.

I should like briefly to recall the essential considerations which prompted the recommendations.

First – and this flowed naturally from the mandate given to us …we held as fundamental the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people, as repeatedly spelled out by this Organization.

Secondly, in duty bound, we insisted exclusively on a peaceful approach, recognizing the right to existence and the legitimate security interests of all States in the region.

Thirdly, we recognized every single decision taken by this Organization in the past on this question and within the wider perspective of the Middle East conflict, taking them as a whole without giving exclusive priority to any.

Fourthly, we sought to enhance in future the potential role of the United Nations in promoting a negotiated solution and in executing and overseeing its essential elements, urging all components of the Organization to act in concert.

Fifthly, we made specific and practical suggestions for a programme designed to implement, within a comprehensive negotiated settlement, the phased, peaceful exercise by the Palestinian people of the rights that they have aspired to achieve, so far without success.

Finally, we reaffirmed the representative status of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and our conviction that it should be involved in all discussions and negotiations concerning their future.

It seemed – and still seems a to the Committee that it was only on such a principled, comprehensively negotiated approach that gradual progress could be achieved in the Middle East, provided that all parties were willing to make effective contributions to this objective within a framework generally acceptable to all the protagonists.

In addition to its specific recommendations, the Committee also outlined the basic considerations and guidelines which should govern all attempted solutions and stressed the special responsibilities of the nations in the area and of the Security Council, particularly its permanent members, in trying to promote a peaceful and comprehensive solution consistent with past decisions and with the applicable principles of international law.

Two of the countries in the area and one of the major Powers have since produced some partial accords, which they vigorously claim although with differing perspectives – offer the best prospects for progress. There may be different opinions as to what methods are best designed to attain the required objectives. The methods are not as important as the substance, but agreement on the substance is a fundamental prerequisite for progress.

It appears that the most significant omissions in these partial and bilateral accords relate both to method and to substance. The first and most serious was the fact that the recognized spokesmen of the Palestinian people have not so far either been consulted or involved in these negotiations, to the extent that their legitimate rights are directly or indirectly affected.

As for the substance, it is to the present trend of world public opinion that we must compare the declared attitude of the protagonists to the objectives of the accords, which are currently described as making progress and as being a process that, according to the parties, is in danger of being destroyed or subverted by any other approach or perspective.

Perhaps I might mention first that the notion of accord implies agreement. But what agreement is there when the three protagonists describe the "accords" with divergent voices?

President Sadat has said that he does not speak for the Palestinians, but claims that he is advancing their prospects of self-determination; President Carter has said that he does not believe that the Palestinians should have a State of their own, as that would not be good for them Prime Minister Begin has said that, if the Palestinian leaders vote for independence, they will be arrested by the Israeli Army.

If, as it seems, there is no agreement on the objective or the final outcome, one would have thought that, at the very least, the common starting-point for a determination of the outcome would be consultation of the people concerned. But this elementary factor seems to be the point farthest away from the minds of the current negotiators. Perhaps the only thing they have in common is that none of them is entitled or authorized to speak for the Palestinian people.

Some two hundred years ago Sir Walter Scott posed today's question to us in his immortal words:

"Breathes there the man, with soul so dead,
Who never to himself bath said,
This is my own, my native land!"

The bitterness with which Palestinians would look on those words is understandable. Yet evidently their soul is very much alive. They long – and have longed for decades – to secure, like others before them, their cherished liberty to return home, to live in peace and to forge their own future. In a word, they want self-determination. Instead, without being consulted, they are offered "full autonomy"; that autonomy increasingly appears to be determined principally by Israel, an occupying Power wielding effective military control over the occupied territories and over the Palestinians in those territories.

In those circumstances it is not surprising that the Palestinians cannot accept what is being offered to them as the road to their aspirations. It follows that with present Israeli attitudes to Palestinian aspirations and with the methods applied in practice in the occupied territories, the notion of "full autonomy", which seems in practice an Israeli euphemism for continued occupation, is not a sound basis for progress.

It should therefore surprise no one that the tension in the occupied territories shows no sign of abatement, It should surprise no one that the Camp David accords have generated no enthusiasm among the people directly concerned, for whose benefit they are allegedly being pursued. It should equally surprise no one that the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, established to defend the rights of the Palestinian people, has expressed grave concern on several occasions and has finally felt it necessary to call for this emergency special session.

Only those who are distracted by more immediate preoccupations can fail to notice the lamentable consequences of indifference and neglect in this important question, at a critical moment in international relations and in the fight for the advancement of human rights and the dignity of people.

We might perhaps briefly review what is happening on the spot – the daily living experience of the Palestinian people – as we debate their question here in the comfort of these halls.

In us they have placed their trust. In the illegally•occupied territories, in their temporary homes in huts and hovels, they are living today under laws which are based on those drafted by Britain in 1945, formulated to counter an emergency situation at the time when terrorism was rife. It is perhaps sufficient to mention that those laws were bitterly criticized at the time by a group of prominent Jewish lawyers, who compared them to Nazi legislation. Those laws, with minor modifications, are being applied this very day in the occupied territories.

It is not only repressive laws that irk the Palestinians and evoke the censure of the international community, which cannot but react to specific actions taken by Israel in the occupied territories.

The settlements policy which has been deliberately pursued by Israel,in the face of international censure, which has declared it an obstacle to peace, continues unabated; in fact it has intensified since the accords were signed. Eighty illegal settlements were established in the decade following the 1967 conflict. Plans projected into the future contemplate 85 new settlements in the five-year period from 1980 to 1985. Israeli plans for the Holy City of Jerusalem have raised tremendous concern throughout the world.

There is extensive documentation compiled by official United Nations bodies on Israeli practices and policies,debated annually here,which I need not enumerate. The number of resolutions adopted as a result of those investigations rises in direct proportion to Israeli actions – that should be as obvious as it is inevitable.

The consequences are also obvious. The increasing isolation of Israel is not something favoured by the international community, but is inflicted by Israel on itself.

The alarming price of those policies for Israel is a national inflation rate currently galloping at over 100 per cent annually and massive expenditure on armaments, which is inevitably matched by the neighbouring countries and produces a highly inflammable situation constantly simmering with resentment and prone to instant escalation. Each eruption makes a solution even more difficult – like a ball of wool which is allowed to fall. Each fall unwinds more than hours of patient effort had previously accomplished.

If this picture is bleak, it becomes even more bleak when we compare it to what it could have been if, instead of those policies, we had been able to secure a modicum of restraint and understanding in the past, instead of the lavish investment in the area of the most advanced weapons systems by the major Powers.

But, even against that bleak background, even against the picture of aspirations unfulfilled, even against the recorded history of occupation and repression, the glimmer of hope will persist if it is not left to be extinguished. That hope deserves a new lease of life today.

In 1974, in a memorable speech before this Assembly, Chairman Arafat of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) offered an olive branch and that offer remains valid still. The hand that proffered it still remains held aloft, although patience is running out. But the hope of effective action by the United Nations still remains paramount. The Committee continues to encourage the peaceful political programme of the PLO leadership. This session can do no less.

If we pause for a moment to compare events in the decade Preceding and the one following that speech, our constant belief in the potential of this Organization for promoting progress will be strengthened. Among the most outstanding evidence I shall only mention the following.

Firstly, two major conflicts erupted in the preceding period there have been none since. Secondly, although records are hard to come by, the number of people killed and the value of property destroyed must have shown a significant drop as a result.

Thirdly,the involvement of the United Nations and recourse to its various capabilities has also increased significantly.

Fourthly, the number of resolutions adopted unanimously shows the continuing trend towards obtaining an international consensus on recommendations advanced.

The scarce statistical data that I have been able to glance through seemed to confirm those considerations.

None of us can deny at least one incontrovertible fact. What is more authentic than the voice of the elected leaders of the Palestinian people in expressing their aspirations? Let us listen to the voice of a respected judge. In a meeting with the Bureau of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People on 18 June this year, His Eminence Raya Bayyud al-Tamimi, Shari a Qadi of Hebron said:

"The Palestinian people reject the Camp David accords and the notion of autonomy, because these fall short of meeting the Palestinian national aspirations to political independence.

"The Palestinians – whether inside or outside the West Bank and Gaza Strip – want an independent State in Palestine under the leadership of the PLO.

"The Palestinians are a peace-loving people. They want to live peacefully and securely, as do the other peoples of the world."

Many other authoritative statements will be heard during this debate.

Can any one of us quarrel with that aspiration? Israel unfortunately does. For holding that conviction the judge was expelled from his land and separated from his people. Elected mayors were maimed for life in a dastardly act which perhaps best symbolizes the bankruptcy of past policies and the need for a change in the policies of the nations that practise or abet those policies.

Inside Israel voices of dissent are making themselves heard with increasing insistence. The historian J.L.Talmon recently wrote:

"Rule by bayonets is equivalent to sitting on a volcano, a continuing source of insecurity and fear. The rebellious hostility of the subjected. population eliminates any measure of security that can be gained by this hill or that valley."

But the Israeli authorities remain unconvinced. They prefer to stoke the fires of discontent. In an interview broadcast by Israeli radio on 21 March 1980, the Israeli Foreign Minister, Yitzhak Shamir, said:

"This is the first time that the Palestinian Arabs have had a chance of securing something, of making some progress in their standing in this country and in the region. For there is little they can gain from the declarations of European statesmen, or from United Nations resolutions, or from terrorist activities … . Experience shows that, by their extremist behaviour, they have been unable to achieve anything in practice.The only concrete proposal that gives them a chance, today, to attain a serious position and to play a role in determining that position in the region is the autonomy plan."

Experience, unfortunately, has also taught us many other things. For instance, each decade since 1940 has seen widespread violence in the Middle East and each conflict has thrown the entire world into a dangerous situation, the last one leading to a nuclear alert.

As we start a new decade and at this special emergency session, we would do well to pause for serious reflection. A statement of the nature of the one I have quoted is hardly a call for a constructive and open dialogue without preconditions. On this basis progress is not possible and it is no use pretending otherwise.

The international community has recognized and reaffirmed Israel's statehood; it has not remained insensitive to Israel's genuine preoccupations over its security. The international community has gone so far as to declare its willingness in advance to guarantee Israel's right to secure and recognized borders. But the international community cannot tolerate Israel's perceived preoccupation with security becoming such an obsession as to constitute an obstacle to progress, still less a pretext for the annexation of territory illegally occupied by force.

It is evident that each one of us represented here has the duty and the obligation, as spelt out in the Charter and under international law, to advocate a policy which can clearly be seen to advance, not to imperil, the prospects of a just, negotiated and lasting solution in the Middle East. This calls for difficult decisions from all the parties to the conflict situation that prevails. The absence of a viable political solution to the Palestinian dimension is the root cause of the violence in the Middle East. The Committee finds no logic in Israel's assertion that a people with the responsibility of statehood and national development should be less peaceful than the same people constantly persecuted, disinherited and deprived of their legitimate aspirations.

Five years ago, the Committee already pointed out the way. Of the two options we considered, the recommendations of the Committee enjoy overwhelming support simply because of their just foundation. If there are any deficiencies or imprecisions, now is the time to have this remedied.

The dark clouds hovering over the area can presage either a new decade of death and destruction, or the dawn of new decisions and dispositions which will gradually build understanding and confidence and generate peaceful progress. None of us can predict the future with accuracy. By we have today the opportunity to study the discernible trends and to evaluate prospects, and there can be no hesitation or delay over the path we should choose.

If, therefore, we are to awaken from this nightmare of the Middle East, which has held us transfixed for decades, if we want to advance the legitimate rights of the dispossessed Palestinian people, then we have to fulfil in good faith the obligations we have assumed, and aid the Palestinian people peacefully to acquire what for so long they have been artificially denied.

But our decision at this session must be recognized as equitable, not as a travesty of justice; a prescription for peace, not an invitation to disaster. The overwhelming majority must now come to a quasi-unanimous resolution which, with one clarion call to action, unequivocally insists on, the essential parameters of Palestinian rights as a first step. Only then will it be possible to turn away from division and confrontation to comprehensive negotiation.

The situation remains complex, but there can be no mistaking the direction in which the international weather-vane is pointing. Israel has to change its present course, in its own self-interest, for the cause of justice and of peace. The United Nations, as in the past, is able and willing to play an authoritative role in promoting and implementing an internationally acceptable solution.

But we have to start today; further delay is as unjust as it is dangerous.

The PRESIDENT: The next speaker is the Observer of the Palestine Liberation Organization, who will take part in the debate in accordance with General Assembly resolution 3237 (XXIX) of 22 November 1974.

I call on Mr. Farouk Kaddoumi , Head of the Political Department of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO).

Mr. KADDOUMI: (Palestine Liberation Organization) (interpretation from Arabic): The call for this emergency session of the United Nations General Assembly under the aegis of the "Uniting for Peace", resolution with the stated goal of discussing the question of Palestine, its consequent tragedies and resultant crises, did not derive from routine political considerations; it was the result of the international community's profound awareness of the extreme seriousness of current conditions in the area of the Arab-Zionist conflict. Those conditions are such that the circle of danger has expanded, jeopardizing international security on a global scale. This session now convenes by virtue of the efforts of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, which has ceaselessly endeavoured to achieve the implementation of this Assembly's recommendations on the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people. We therefore express our gratitude and profound appreciation to the Chairman of the Committee, Mr. Falilou Kane, its Rapporteur, Mr. Victor Gauci, and all its members.

The convening of this emergency session may be considered as a danger signal to warn that conditions have reached the point of explosion and total confrontation. This is therefore an occasion to call upon the international community to shoulder fully its responsibilities so as to head off the dangers surrounding it and to find solutions before the point of no return is reached.

In view of these conditions and the question under consideration, the United Nations is required to prove the usefulness of its survival and continuance as a body capable of providing political alternatives to raging wars resulting from intransigence, arrogance and the logic of aggressive force.

The Palestinian people and the PLO have carried both the olive branch and the gun. In spite of the lessons learned from over 50 years of experience that what has been taken by force can be regained only by force; in spite of the continued attempts to make us despair of political and diplomatic struggle; and in spite of the oppression, terror and genocide we face in our homeland and in involuntary exile, we have not let the olive branch fall from our hand – this olive branch that we have carried along with the gun of the revolution.

Therefore, we are here not to reaffirm our intentions and our aspirations to peace and stability in our homeland and in the region as a whole, but rather to call upon the Assembly to mobilize in an effort to realize that noble, human goal.

I should like to take this opportunity to salute all those States that have supported our just cause and contributed their continuing good efforts to finding adequate political formulas to achieve Palestinian rights as an inevitable and fundamental step towards peace in the region. I should also like to commend those States for their aspirations to bolster this international body to enable it to carry out its original task of providing political alternatives to help the people of the world avert the catastrophes of war.

When we rejected the Camp David accords and the separate peace treaty between the Egyptian regime and the Government of the terrorist Menachem Begin, which was brought into being under the auspices of, and with the participation of, the United States, we had the support of all the Arab peoples and the overwhelming majority of the Arab States. We rejected the Camp David accords and the separate peace treaty because we could see ahead of time that they constituted a conspiracy against justice and peace. We could perceive that conspiracy by virtue of our experience in struggle. At the time, there were some who did not appreciate our position with regard to this triple conspiracy and chose to wait for the outcome.

Today the outcome is obvious. We need not provide further evidence of the bankruptcy of the Camp David policy. Rather, we must examine the dangers that it has produced, which are more serious than the previous ones. The sole benefit of the Camp David accords is that they have revealed, for all to see, the nature and real intentions of our Zionist enemy – a racist, expansionist and aggressive settler-colonial base.

The two parties to the Camp David conspiracy in our region are left with only the trivial theatrics of the so-called autonomy talks. The third party is now busy with presidential elections, concerned about none of the problems of this world save returning to the White House.

Let us now leave aside the cause of justice which they ignored at Camp David, for we did not expect anything else of them, but we would ask, where is the peace they promised humankind?

First, as relates to peace, if the October 1973 war was to be the last war, as they claimed, then why that flow of weapons, why that non-stop parade of F-16s going from here to Israel, refuelling in the air? That fleet has flown from the United States to Israel non-stop. If Israel has nothing to fear from Egypt, and Egypt has nothing to fear from Israel, then why does the United States supply those two States with arms?

The Palestinian. and Lebanese peoples can see those arms being used against them. They are being butchered every day. The military facilities being provided to Egypt are to be used against the revolution in Iran and to threaten the progressive nationals-patriotic Arab States, as in the case of the Egyptian-Libyan border. The atmosphere of war dominates the entire region as a result of internal and intra•-regional plots and conspiracies. That atmosphere and its consequences are definitively the outcome of the Camp David accords.

Secondly, as regards the settlements, if we compare the situation in our occupied land today with the situation prior to the Camp David policy, keeping in mind the claims about peace, then what do we find? We find that the Zionist enemy has hysterically intensified all its racist, aggressive practices at all levels.

The settlements have multiplied. The area of confiscated land has increased a number of times,in a blatant and provocative manner, without even the fabrication of a pretext out of respect for world public opinion and international lacy. Today Israel controls about 40 per cent of the 5.5 million dunums which make up the area of the West Bank, and the settlements occupy 11 per cent of that area. Twenty-seven per cent of the cultivable land of the West Bank has been confiscated, and 80 per cent of the Jordan Valley has been seized. Israel continuously plunders the water resources for the purpose of starving Arab peasants and forcing them to leave in order to make a living. With every passing day the enemy deliberately plunders and mutilates the West Bank, turning the daily life of the average Palestinian into a kind of hell, as more than one Israeli official has said.

That is one aspect of the peace they promised when they met at Camp David. But it is not the only aspect.

Then, of course, there is the question of Jerusalem. No Israeli Government dared play with the status of Jerusalem so wantonly and defiantly as the Begin Government did in the wake of the Camp David conspiracy.

In 1917, Arab Muslims and Christians owned 94 per cent of the land and estates of Jerusalem. Between 1948 and 1966, that figure dropped to 25 per cent following the Israeli confiscation of land and property in that part of Jerusalem occupied in 1948. As a result of renewed operations of confiscation during the period 1968 to 1978, land and property ownership in Jerusalem became 14 per cent Arab, 84 per cent Jewish and 2 per cent foreign.

The demographic tragedy of Jerusalem is no less severe than its land-property tragedy. In 1917, the population of Jerusalem – then 40,000 – was 75 per cent Arab and 25 per cent Jewish. At the end of the British mandate, it was 58.2 per cent Arab and 41.8 per cent Jewish. And in 1967 it was 20 per cent Arab and 70 per cent Jewish.

Moreover, the changes in the character and heritage of the City have not been limited to what the enemy has built above ground; underground excavations are already in progress under the Holy Rock inside Al-Aqsa Mosque. Those who deliberately burned Al-Aqsa Mosque cannot be expected to heed the charge of meddling with its foundations.

In fact Zionist violations of the character of the Holy City occur on a daily basis. We need not list those violations here, since we hope that representatives will have a chance to review the survey of violations prepared by the Organization of the Islamic Conference. Such a review would help them to recognize the extent of our frustration and that of over 800 million Moslems who consider Jerusalem the first kiblah, or direction in which they turn in prayer, and the third among the holiest places of Islam.

The Zionist enemy used to conceal its conspiracy against Jerusalem. Since the Camp David accords and the so-called peace the Zionists have moved to the open implementation of their policy on Jerusalem, which is aimed at the Judaization of the Holy City and the elimination of its original character.. That policy covers sovereignty, land, property, economy, population and culture. The most recent measure following the separate peace with the Egyptian regime occurred on 15 May 1980, when the Israeli Knesset began considering a bill stating that Jerusalem would remain a united city under Israeli sovereignty and that it would be the capital of Israel and the seat of its Government.

The new bill forbids the Zionist State to cede its sovereignty over any part of the city in any negotiations. Consequently, the Zionist State will have to change the new law in order to be able to change its position in that respect. The Zionists are today applying the stated intention of their leader, Theodore Herzl, who stated:

"If some day we get Jerusalem, we shall eliminate everything the Jews do not consider holy. We shall not hesitate to burn the remains of the centuries."

In the fourth place, with regard to methodical terrorism, President Sadat has often claimed that he took his initiative in order to alleviate the suffering of our people in the occupied territories and to place them on the road to self-determination. What can he say today, when the whole world is witness to the point the State of Israel and its clandestine organizations have reached in their genocidal campaigns against our people in the occupied territories and in Diaspora.

Members may recall references by the parties to the Camp David accords to the presence of a Palestinian negotiator to participate in the so-called autonomy talks. In their attempts to remove the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) from its position of leadership as the sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people, those parties have repeatedly stated that there are Palestinians who are ready to negotiate. Some of those parties hypothesized that the West Bank Mayors would be the alternative leaders to the PLO. We challenged that position out of confidence in our people and our sons. Where are the Mayors now? They are in hospital; undergoing treatment after the attempts on their lives; or they are exiled, far from their families and homes; or they are under house arrest. They are all threatened with punishment if they take part in political activity. They could serve three years if they express an opinion or make a statement rejecting occupation, defending the legitimate national rights of the Palestinian people or supporting the PLO.

Methodical terrorism has threatened the lives of those who symbolize our peoples in the occupied territories. One can imagine what is happening to the average Palestinian in those territories: 250,000 such Palestinians have been interrogated and/or detained. Representatives are certainly aware that no international commission has been allowed to enter occupied Palestine to review the Nazi-like treatment of Palestinian prisoners, thousands of whom have recently staged a hunger strike to defend their simplest human rights.

Before the Camp David conspiracy, the State alone practised terrorism in the Zionist entity; since that conspiracy the State has released its secret army and clandestine organizations to commit crimes and violations consistent with the Zionist ideology, which is predicated on terrorism. The Zionists have exploited the deteriorating position of the Egyptian regime, which accepted the Zionist concept of autonomy, which means the complete occupation of Palestine as a step towards the realization of greater Israel.

Fifthly, dissatisfied with its efforts to persecute our people inside Palestine, Israel pursues them wherever zionism's criminal hand can reach. As a result, it is waging a daily war of genocidal attrition against our people in Lebanon, a sisterly State in which our people were forced to seek refuge in the aftermath of the tragedy of 1948. For over seven years the Israeli enemy has waged war against our refugee camps and community centres, which, through the use of bombs made in America, they have turned into cemeteries and rubble. Not content with overt warfare, daily violations of airspace, borders and shores in Lebanon, Israel has resorted to internal plotting, intrigues and fighting, with the purpose of occupying southern Lebanon, stealing the waters of the Litani River and attacking the Palestinians and their steadfast revolution. The Zionists attempted to show the world that there was a Palestinian-Lebanese war; they failed, thanks to the awareness of the great Lebanese people. Then they tried to tell the world that there was a Moslem-Christian war in Lebanon, for the purpose of undermining Palestinian secularism; they failed. Ultimately they directed their blows at the Christians in a desperate attempt to partition Lebanon and bring about its disintegration. Certainly Israel could not have succeeded in its intrigues and plots had it not been for the visible and invisible imperialist support of the United States, in spite of the latter's professed claim that it supports Lebanon and its people.

In Israel's eyes, the only crime of the Lebanese people was that they welcomed and defended the Palestinians. Thus, Israel has been punishing Lebanon for that stand until Lebanon chooses one of two options: either to launch a genocidal attack against its Palestinians brothers, or to provide them with a part of Lebanon in which to resettle forever. But the two peoples, the Palestinians and Lebanese, will remain united in the trenches of the single struggle until Lebanon recovers its complete sovereignty and an independent neighbouring Palestinian State is established -. a State for which no Palestinian would accept any substitute.

A look at the situation in the Diddle East today clearly shows the ramifications of the question of Palestine in the entire region. The ramifications should constitute a forewarning of what may happen. The new policy of alliance between the Egyptian regime, Israel and the United States which emanated from Camp David constitutes today a grave threat to the region and has created hotbeds of tension in several areas, any one of which may erupt in horrible flames. The continual psychological war against the Arab States, the creation of divisive and disintegrating factors within the Arab world, and the banding together of neighbouring States against the Arab countries will lead to the immediate collapse of all possibilities of preventing the explosion of the region, which is of so much importance strategically and militarily, and. from the standpoint of its oil. The continual United States threats of intervention by rapid deployment of forces constitute the consummation of that psychological war, which is aimed at maintaining tension. The question of Palestine is thus the core of the Middle East crisis around which the various forces meet; thus it must be the key to the resolution of those contradictions. Hence, the gravity of the explosive situation in the Middle East as a result of the Arab-Israeli conflict.

The significance of this session lies not only in its function as a resounding cry of warning to avert explosion and total confrontation in our region despite all indications; its significance resides also in the fact that the session constitutes a rebellion by this Assembly against the veto weapon which the United States has relied upon to abort the resolutions adopted and reaffirmed by this Assembly since 1974 with regard to the Palestinians' right to self-determination, to return to their homes and to independence in Palestine.

The present United States administration spoke at the beginning of its term of a homeland for the Palestinians. Soon it retreated from that position out of confusion and a lack of clear political vision. Then the President of the United States attempted to acknowledge part of the truth by stating that the PLO represented a substantial part of the Palestinian people. And then again the United States Government retreated when the National security adviser declared: "Bye-bye, PLO".

Still later the United States expressed a commitment to the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people in the joint United States-USSR communique of 1 October 1977. Soon the United States Government withdrew that commitment under the threats of Zionist pressure groups and during its preparation for the Sadat adventure, which produced the Camp David accords and so-called autonomy.

Our stress on the present administration's policy on the question of Palestine does not mean that previous administrations were stronger adherents of justice or possessed a deeper sense of right. But this administration has gone beyond all normal bounds of confusion, retreat and humiliating capitulation to Israeli and Zionist pressures. You may recall that the Government of the United States voted for Security Council resolution 1+61 (1980) last March, only to say, a few days later, that it should not have supported that resolution and that the positive vote cast was the result of a communications problem between Washington and New York. Poor Washington. How technologically backward.

Only recently, the Security Council met and condemned the Israeli measures in Jerusalem. The United States abstained, although several years earlier the Security Council had, with United States support, called upon Israel to halt all measures tending to change the character of the Holy City.

The present administration also abstained recently on a Security Council resolution calling upon Israel to return three Palestinian deportees to Hebron and Halhoul. The same administration spoke loudest on human rights; yet when the Security Council called upon Israel to rescind its arbitrary decision to deport three elected Palestinian leaders, it abstained.

Those are just a few examples of the record of the current administration, which is replete with hostility to the Palestinian people and capitulation to the Zionist will, The Carter administration attributes all that has happened to its preoccupation with the presidential elections. Should we wait until the American President is re-elected?

We have grown accustomed to hearing such chronic pretexts over the years. President Johnson was by nature anti-Arab., and therefore we had to wait for the election of a new President. President Nixon could not do anything serious before the beginning of his second term. President Ford was not elected and we had to wait for an elected President. President Carter cannot make a move before the beginning of his second term, and it is not certain that he will be re-elected, because Reagan may win. If Reagan wins, then he will not be able to move before the beginning of his second term. Nonetheless, Reagan has already sold himself in advance to Zionism and pledged himself to Israel. He is now competing with Anderson, the independent candidate, for the favour of Israel;; both promise to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel upon winning the election.

This brief survey of the attitudes of successive American administrations and the coming one clearly shows that there is no hope in American policy. Moderation, good will and patience are characteristics not relevant to the logic of this age and to the balance of power in the world. While any administration is bound to please its constituency and is therefore susceptible to Zionist pressure or blackmail, the Arab States are equally bound to respond to their constituencies, which suffer from Israeli arrogance and brutality. This is the logic that will balance and awaken United States policy.

Therefore, total confrontation with the United States Government and its Israeli ally is inevitable. No Arab ruler will hesitate to join in this confrontation after watching the United States Government's blessing, moral and material support and military aid bestowed on Israel, which is preparing to make Jerusalem its eternal capital and which is devouring occupied Arab territories on the West Bank and in the Gaza Strip, which Menachem Begin considers the land of his forefathers.

This is the psychological and political background of the circumstances under which this session is held.

Recently we saw a glimmer of hope in the declaration of the Venice Summit, but it stated only part of the truth. That part was neither fully accurate nor realistic. Some of the Common Market States acknowledged that the Camp David accords did not bring peace and could not serve as a framework for a just peace. Without this fact the Venice declaration would not have been made. Yet that declaration did not express the convictions of most Common Market countries because of submission to United States threats. None the less we still hope that the Common Market countries will develop the Venice declaration in such a way that they may play an effective role in enabling the Palestinian people to exercise their rights, contained in resolutions adopted by this Assembly. We need not recall that the security of the Middle East is linked to the security of Europe, and that the security of Europe is linked to the security of the world.

Since Menachem Begin came to power there has been no room left for interpretation or guesswork with regard to the real intentions of Israel for expansion in the occupied Arab territories. Israel gives the West Bank and the Gaza Strip Hebrew names. It wants Jerusalem. It continues to build new settlements. Yet the leader of the Israeli Opposition, Shimon Peres, expresses support for Begin's policy on Jerusalem and new settlements. This means that if Peres comes to power conditions krill not change at all except for the replacement of a fanatic Torah face by a falsely progressive and socialist one.

Given the pattern of Israeli behaviour supported by the United States Government, we can predict that our region lives now on borrowed time in the sense that the explosion is coming soon. The Palestinian people, who have been confronting and battling the racist, expansionist and Zionist movement for over 60 years, under the leadership of the Palestine Liberation Organization, believe that matters are moving very slowly, a development that enables Israel gradually to realize its goals and geographic and demographic ambitions. Yet the international community is still unable at least to confront Israel in an effective and decisive manner despite United Nations condemnation of Israel.

This session represents a last chance, if not the last one, indeed, before the explosion, to enable the Palestinian people to achieve their right to return, to self-determination, to independence, to sovereignty and to establish a State of their own in Palestine. Our people could not attain those rights in the Security Council, despite repeated attempts, as a result of self-interested imperialist alliances.

The Palestinian people, the peoples of the region and all peoples which love freedom and peace look forward to this Assembly today to demonstrate the results of this emergency session, hopeful that you will succeed in enabling our region to avert the anticipated destruction and bloodshed because of Israeli arrogance and United States submission to Israel's wishes. Let us return to the real sources for a just solution of the crisis. The solution is-in your hands. You made it and promoted it. It is the only solution contained in resolution 3236 (XXIX).

Let the United Nations shoulder its responsibility for realizing the complete withdrawal of Israel from the occupied Palestinian and Arab territories and securing Palestinian sovereignty under the leadership of the PLO and the implementation of the right of the Palestinian people to return to their homeland to exercise their inalienable right of self-determination and the establishment of an independent State. Let us halt the theatrical autonomy talks, which are held against the wishes of the Palestinian people, in their absence, and against their will. Let us all unite for peace, a real peace that is based on justice, before it is too late.

The PRESIDENT: I should like to request representatives participating in the debate to inscribe their names on the list of speakers. I intend to close the list of speakers tomorrow, Wednesday, 23 July, at 12 noon.

The meeting rose at 1.30 p.m.

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