U N I T E D N A T I O N S
Office of Public Information
United Nations, N.Y.
(FOR USE OF INFORMATION MEDIA — NOT AN OFFICIAL RECORD)
Committee on Rights of Press Release GA/PAL/6
Palestinian People 4 March 1976
4th Meeting (AM)
COMMITTEE ON PALESTINIAN RIGHTS HEARS CHAIRMAN'S REPORT ON MEETING FACILITIES;
TO BEGIN GENERAL DEBATE NEXT TUESDAY WITH STATEMENT BY PLO
The Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the
Palestinian People heard a report by the Chairman this morning on the results
of his meeting with the Secretary-General concerning the provision of
summary records, additional Secretariat support and meeting facilities for
the Committee's work.
The Committee will begin its substantive work when it meets again at
10:30 a.m. Tuesday, 9 March, with the observer of the Palestine Liberation
Organization (PLO) listed as the first speaker in the general debate.
The Chairman, Medoune Fall (Senegal), said that at the Committee's
request, he had met on Tuesday, 2 March, with Secretary-General Kurt Waldheim
and the Under-Secretary-General for Conference Services, Bohdan Lewandowski,
and a not entirely satisfactory compromise had been reached in regard to
summary records of the Committee's meetings. Verbatim transcripts made from
sound recordings of the meetings would be made available to the Committee
in English and French.
On the proposal of the Chairman the Committee agreed to examine the
transcript it would receive of today's meeting and to determine at its
next meeting whether the transcript was satisfactory. If not, the matter
would be taken up again with the Secretary-General.
The Committee had been informed by its Secretary at its meeting on
Monday, 1 March, that under General Assembly resolution 2538 (XXIV) of 11
December 1969 summary records were not provided for newly established
subsidiary bodies of the General Assembly unless they were specifically
authorized in the enabling resolution. In the resolution under which the
Committee was established [3376 (XXX) of 10 November 1976], the Assembly
requested the Secretary-General "to provide the Committee with all the
necessary facilities for the performance of its tasks".
The Chairman said that in his conversation with the Secretary-General
he had not raised the question of the possibility of calling a special session
of the General Assembly to request summary records because he had not felt
that all members of the Committee had agreed that things should be taken
The question of the frequency of the Committee's meetings had been
resolved satisfactorily, the Chairman added, and it was believed that the
Committee could hold a minimum of one meeting a day. If emergency meetings
of the Security Council were called, however, the Secretary-General would
ask the Committee to be flexible in that respect.
The Chairman said he had also discussed staffing problems, with the
Secretary-General in view of the difficulties which the Committee had
encountered, and had asked that the Committee secretariat be enlarged. The
Secretary-General had said he would consider the matter. If the Committee
was without summary records, an enlarged secretariat could produce a summary
of the Committee's discussions, the Chairman observed.
In the discussion this morning on summary records, several members of
the Committee expressed disatisfaction with the arrangements made.
Among the comments made, Rachid Driss (Tunisia) said the proposed
solution was much more burdensome, more costly and less useful than summary
records. Under the guide of rationalization, decisions were taken which
hampered the work of the Organization in order to save money. Rikhi Jaipal
(India) said that without summary records the Committee could not discharge
its tasks with assurance or any sense of responsibility. In his view the
Committee should decide formally that it should have be provided with summary
records rather than leaving that decision to the Secretariat. The question
of finances was irrelevant in the context of the importance of the work of
the Committee, which in any case was not going to be self-perpetuating.
In the discussion on documentation, the Committee Secretary, Yogaraj
Yogasundram, told the delegates that the compilation of United Nations
resolutions on the Palestinian question, requested by the Committee last week,
would be available on Monday, 8 March. The rest of the requested
documentation, concerning the history of the problem and its development,
would be available by Friday, 12 March.
Future Work of Committee
The Chairman informed the Committee that the PLO had accepted the
invitation to participate in the work of the Committee as an observer and
was now present.
The Committee also agreed without objection to observer status for
the representatives of Syria, Libya and Egypt. The Chairman said that in
accordance with the decision taken on 27 February, he had asked the Secretary-
General to inform all Member States — particularly the countries concerned
with the Middle East problem and the members of the Security Council, especial
the permanent members of the Council — that they would be welcome to appear
before the Committee and make known their views on the Palestinian question.
Zehdi L. Terzi, the observer from PLO, in informing the Committee that
his delegation would be prepared to make its statement on 9 March, inquired
whether the Committee would do its work at the United Nations or would consider sending a fact-finding mission to the area of conflict. Several delegations expressed the view that a decision on the matter would be premature. Mowaffak Allaf (Syria) said his delegation did not question the right of the Committee to send a visiting mission to the area but entered a reservation on the use of the term "fact finding" since the facts in the issue were already well established.
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Document Type: Meeting record, Meeting records
Document Sources: Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People (CEIRPP)
Subject: Palestine question
Publication Date: 04/03/1976