January – April 2004

Volume XXVII, Bulletin No. 1




on action by the United Nations system and

intergovernmental organizations

relevant to the question of Palestine 




Gulf Cooperation Council adopts Kuwait Declaration and closing statement



Secretary-General condemns Middle East violence



Secretary-General deplores loss of life in Gaza



Secretary-General condemns Jerusalem bombings



Commission on Human Rights Special Rapporteur issues addendum on the wall to report



Secretary General deplores violence in Gaza



Commission on the Status of Women approves draft resolution for adoption by the Economic and Social Council



Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People opens 2004 session



Secretary-General condemns double suicide bombing in Ashdod



Secretary-General condemns the assassination of Sheikh Ahmad Yassin



UNCTAD issues a study on transit trade and maritime transport



Commission on Human Rights adopts resolution on grave situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory



Commission on Human Rights adopts resolutions relating to the question of Palestine



United Nations International Meeting convenes on the impact of the wall



Secretary-General condemns assassination of Abdelaziz Rantissi



Commission on Human Rights Special Rapporteur expresses concern at assassination of Abdelaziz Rantissi



Secretary-General alarmed by two-day incursion into northern Gaza



Commission on Human Rights recommends draft decision for adoption by the Economic and Social Council


The Bulletin can be found in the United Nations Information System 
on the Question of Palestine (UNISPAL) on the Internet at: 
 , as well as at: 


In a letter to the Secretary-General dated 6 January 2004, the Chargé d’affaires a.i. of the Permanent Mission of Kuwait to the United Nations transmitted the text of the Kuwait Declaration that was adopted by the Supreme Council of the Gulf Cooperation Council at its twenty-fourth session held in the State of Kuwait, on 21 and 22 December 2003 (A/58/673-S/2004/7). The text of the Declaration and excerpts from the closing statement of the session are reproduced below:


The Kuwait Declaration

Issued by the Supreme Council of the Gulf Cooperation Council at its twenty-fifth session

The Supreme Council of the Gulf Cooperation Council, having regard to the lofty purposes, principles and aims of the Charter of the Gulf Cooperation Council and the common ties between the peoples it represents, recognizing the importance and significance of the current phase through which our Gulf Arab region is passing, as well as the rapid political changes it is experiencing and the great challenges they pose, pursuant to the statements, declarations and resolutions issued by the Supreme Council at its previous sessions, the Council, at its twenty-fourth session held in the State of Kuwait on 27 and 28 Shawwal A.H. 1424, corresponding to 21 and 22 December A.D. 2003, reviewed the work done by the Council in various different sectors and conducted an in-depth analysis of all issues and subjects of concern to the States members of the Council and their peoples in the light of developments in the Arab region and in the international arena.

The Supreme Council, expressing its appreciation for the implementation measures taken by the States members in accordance with the Supreme Council’s resolutions aimed at promoting and strengthening relations between the States members in a variety of domains with a view to achieving economic integration among them, hereby affirms the following:

1.   The importance of adopting the requisite decisions and practical measures to begin implementing the objectives of the comprehensive development strategy adopted by the Supreme Council at its nineteenth session held at Abu Dhabi. The launching of the process of reform and unification of the educational systems of the State members, in accordance with the terms of the document submitted by His Royal Highness Prince Abdullah Abd al-Aziz Al Sa`ud, Crown Prince and First Deputy Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, is perhaps the most important of the GCC’s strategic projects and programmes that will strengthen its work and serve the interests and aims of the State and its citizens. There is no doubt that a developed education that stresses technological and scientific progress is a fundamental pillar in providing the Gulf citizen with the practical and technological training needed for participation in comprehensive and sustainable economic and social development in the State members.

2.   The Supreme Council, confirming the importance of stable political and security conditions in the Gulf region, regards this as a strategic condition for the realization of sustainable development in all spheres and as serving the interests of States and peoples. It supports all diplomatic and political efforts to achieve security and stability in Iraq, to provide the fraternal Iraqi people with the security, stability and prosperity they long for, and to make Iraq a positive member of the international community whose relations with neighbouring States are based on the principles of international law and the fulfilment of international obligations.

3.   The Supreme Council expresses its condemnation, repudiation and rejection of terrorist operations that claim the lives of innocent victims, terrorize peace-loving people and destroy civil installations and institutions. It affirms, once more, that the perpetrators of such acts of terrorism and destruction, which are incompatible with the noble Islamic religion and its lofty principles, are guilty of committing immoral and inhuman acts aimed at destroying society, demolishing its political and social foundations and achieving their illegitimate aspirations and aims.

In this regard, the Supreme Council affirms its support for all measures taken to combat all forms of terrorism, together with drugs and the scourge of money-laundering, and it confirms the determination of the Gulf Cooperation Council and its States members to pursue all means to maintain security, peace and stability in order to safeguard the lives and property of citizens and to defend their accomplishments, in accordance with the principle of the collective security of the States members of the Council.

4.   In order to deal equitably with the political and economic powers and blocs that have regional and international influence, the Cooperation Council must keep pace with the rapid events and developments continuously unfolding in the Arab, regional and international arenas and take the appropriate initiatives that will contribute effectively to the strengthening of its role in identifying and shaping the course of events based on a clear and well-defined Gulf position.

5.   There is an urgent need to boost the working mechanisms, committees and various bodies of the Cooperation Council, so as to improve its functioning and the speed with which its resolutions and recommendations are implemented.

Success lies with God!


Closing statement of the Supreme Council of the Gulf Cooperation Council at its twenty-fourth session

The Supreme Council viewed with grave concern the serious deterioration in the situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territories and the challenges posed to the Middle East peace process by the insistence of the Israeli Government on pursuing a policy of escalation, attacking and destroying Palestinian towns and villages, making their inhabitants homeless, assassinating their cadres and continuing with the construction of its so-called “security fence”, which is actually designed to seize more Palestinian land and to abort the road map and the peace process, erecting an obstacle and posing a challenge to all Arab and international peace efforts. In this context, the Supreme Council appeals to the international community to bring pressure to bear on the Israeli Government to bring a halt to its provocative acts and to its threats against Syria and Lebanon.

In that connection, the Supreme Council took note of the speech made by Ariel Sharon indicating the determination of the Israeli Government to take unilateral action to implement its so-called “separation” or “ disengagement” plan, thereby rejecting any negotiations with the Palestinian side. The Supreme Council reiterated its strong condemnation of such measures which do not help Arab and international efforts to revive the peace process.

In condemning these provocative and savage practices, the Supreme Council reiterates, once more, that the only way to achieve a comprehensive, just and lasting peace in the Middle East region is to put