SPECIAL UNIT ON
Volume III, Bulletin No. 8-9-10
1. Action taken by the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People.
2. Security Council adopts resolution on the status of Jerusalem.
3. The Council of Ministers of the Organization of African Unity adopts resolutions on the Palestinian Question and Jerusalem.
4. Second United Nations Seminar on the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People held in Vienna, Austria, 25-29 August 1980.
5. The Inter-Parliamentary Union adopts a resolution on the Palestinian Question.
6.Text of the statement of the Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, His Excellency, Mr. F. Kane (Senegal) in the World Parliament of Peoples for Peace in Sofia, Bulgaria, 23-27 September 1980.
1. Action taken by the Committee on the
Exercise of the Inalienable Rights
of the Palestinian People
The Committee kept under close review events taking place in the Middle East, particularly those which affected the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people and, on several occasions through its Chairman, drew the attention of the Secretary-General and the President of the Security Council to those events and expressed its concern at Israel's actions in the occupied territories. The texts of these letters appear in this bulletin.
The Chairman also addressed letters of appreciation to the permanent representatives of those countries which had decided to withdraw their embassies from Jerusalem and to re-establish them in Tel Aviv.
The Chairman of the Committee attended a meeting of the World Parliament of Peoples for Peace in Sofia, Bulgaria, from 23-27 September 1960. The text of his statement is reproduced in this bulletin. The Committee was also represented by a delegation of four members at the Second United Nations Seminar on the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People held in Vienna, Austria, from 25-29 August 1980.
During this period the Committee adopted its report to the General Assembly, which is contained in document supplement number 35 (A/35/35).
Paragraphs 45-48 of the Report contain the recommendations of the Committee, which are as follows:
"The repeated endorsement of the recommendations of the Committee by the General Assembly at its thirty-first, thirty-second, thirty-third and thirty-fourth sessions and its seventh emergency special session, strengthens the Committee's conviction that positive action by the Security Council could create the necessary conditions for a just and lasting peace, since the recommendations contain the basic principles relating to the problem of Palestine within the Middle East situation. The Committee, consequently, unanimously decided once more to reiterate the validity of those recommendations which are again annexed to the present report.
The Committee once more urges the Security Council to take positive action on those recommendations which, with emphasis on the urgency of their implementation, have repeatedly been brought to the attention of the Security Council.
The Committee once more draws the attention of the General Assembly to its considered opinion that the Camp David Accords and the attendant negotiations which continue to take place contravene paragraph k of General Assembly resolution 33/28 A of 7 December 1978 and paragraphs 1 and 2 of General Assembly resolution 34/65 B of 29 November 1979, to the extent that they did not take into account the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people and were negotiated without the participation of the Palestine Liberation Organization, the representative of the Palestinian people.
The Committee considers that a wider understanding of the just cause of the Palestinian people would be a major contribution towards a just solution of the question of Palestine and that it should continue in its efforts to achieve such a wider understanding so as to promote the implementation of its recommendations."
Letter dated 4 August 1960 from the Chairman of the Committee
on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian
People to the Secretary-General
The Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People has authorized me, in my capacity as Chairman, to bring to your notice the inhuman treatment accorded by Israeli authorities in the occupied Arab territories to those inhabitants whom they have imprisoned.
It is clear that conditions in Israeli gaols are below normally accepted levels and that these have forced prisoners to resort to a hunger strike in protest.
Already there have been reports of deaths due to forced feeding while no attempt has evidently been made to improve present conditions.
These atrocities are clear violations of the human rights of the inhabitants of the occupied territories and call for an investigation of the inhuman conditions in Israeli Gaols, in general, and of the Nefha desert gaol, in particular, where the prisoners have been driven to a hunger strike in protest against the inhuman conditions that prevail there.
I should be grateful if you would have this letter circulated as a document of the General Assembly, under item 24 of the provisional agenda, and of the Security Council.
Letter dated 4 August 1980 from the Chairman of the Committee
on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People
to the Secretary-General
The Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People has authorized me, in my capacity as Chairman of the Committee, to convey to you its grave concern at the latest action taken by the Government of Israel in finalizing its plans to make Jerusalem the capital of Israel.
This action by Israel not only demonstrates its contempt for international law but is a deliberate violation of Security Council resolution 476 (1960), adopted as recently as 30 June 1980, which, inter alia, urgently called upon Israel to abide by Security Council resolutions and to desist forthwith from persisting in the policy and measures affecting the character and status of the Holy City of Jerusalem.
It is also in violation of paragraph 9 of resolution ES-7/2 adopted by the General Assembly on 29 July 1980 at its seventh emergency special session, in which the Assembly:
Such actions prove that Israel, in spite of its protestations, has little intention of helping progress towards a peaceful settlement of the Middle East problem. By its violations of international law, and by its defiance of United Nations resolutions, Israel is posing an increasing threat to international peace and security.
The Committee is strongly convinced that the Security Council should now examine practical ways and means, in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Charter of the United Nations, to secure full implementation of Council 476 (1960).
I should be grateful if you would have this letter circulated as a document of the General Assembly, under item 24 of the provisional agenda, and of the Security Council.
Letter dated 15 August 1980 from the Chairman of the Committee on
the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People
to the Secretary-General
The Committee on the Exercise of the inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People has authorized me in my capacity as Chairman of the Committee to draw your attention to the new regulations of the Israeli authorities concerning educational activities of Palestinian institutions for higher learning in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip.
Reports originating in Israel indicate that the Israeli Government has decided to make it impossible to open any Palestinian institution for higher education in the occupied territories without a special permit by the Israeli military authorities.
To obtain this permit, an institution will have to fulfil a number of harsh criteria, established by the Israeli authorities, the sole purpose of which is to control the institutions of higher learning and to silence any expression for the attainment of national aspirations.
Included in the criteria is a regulation which provides that military authorities can turn down requests by these institutions for a permit to continue their educational activities.
Reports originating in Israel indicate that the Government of Israel has authorized the military authorities to strip Arab school curricula of any reference to Palestinian national character and history.
These activities carried out by the Israeli authorities are in contradiction of the basic principles of human rights and international law and are in contempt of the various resolutions adopted by the United Nations.
I should be grateful if you would have this letter circulated as a document of the General Assembly, under item 24 of the provisional agenda, and of the Security Council.
Letter dated 29 September 1960 from the Chairman of tire
Committee on the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian
People to the Secretary-General
As Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, I wish to draw your attention to the latest developments in the case of the Mayors of Hebron and Halhoul and the Sharia Judge of Hebron who were arbitrarily expelled by the Israeli military authorities from their respective cities. Since their expulsion, Israel, in defiance of Security Council resolutions 468 (1960) and 469 (1960), has refused to permit them to return and to resume their functions for which they were popularly elected and appointed.
The expulsion of the Mayors and of the Sharia Judge has been recognized as one more in a series of violations of the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949 1/ and in particular of article 49 which reads "Individual or mass forcible transfer, as well as deportation of protected persons from occupied territories to the territory of the occupying power, or to that of any other country, occupied or not, are prohibited, regardless of their motive". This notwithstanding, the Supreme Court of Israel has now, while criticizing the Government's action, upheld, by a split verdict, the expulsion of the Mayors and of the Sharia Judge of Hebron not on legal grounds but for considerations of security. It has also ruled that the Mayors, but not the Sharia Judge, have the right to appeal to an Israeli Military Review Committee, not in person but by proxy. The hearing of that appeal has been fixed for Wednesday, 8 October 1980.
Resolutions 468 (1980) and 469 (1960) of the Security Council called upon the Government of Israel, as the occupying power, to rescind the illegal measures taken and to facilitate the immediate return of these Palestinian leaders.
The action against these Palestinian leaders taken by the Government of Israel through its Judicial organs seems to be a regrettable and provocative continuation of illegal measures referred to by the Security Council. Moreover, it would also appear to be contrary to the very essence of Judicial practice if the subjects of the appeal are not permitted to appear at the hearing of such an appeal. As long as the Government of Israel maintains even a façade of Judicial procedure, it would appear at the very least that these Palestinian leaders should be permitted to be present at the hearing of their appeal.
Paragraph 3 of Security Council resolution 469 (1980) requested you, as Secretary-General, inter alia, to continue your efforts in order to ensure the immediate implementation of that resolution. It would appear to the Committee that convincing the Government of Israel that it should permit these eminent, elected Palestinian leaders to return to their cities and to participate in the appeal of their case would be a positive and judicially correct -step towards the implementation of the resolution.
I shall be glad, therefore, if you could exercise your good offices in an attempt to attain this objective – a small measure, perhaps, against the total requirement of the restoration of legitimate Palestinian rights, but one on which the international community is united.
May I request that this letter be circulated as a document of the General Assembly, under agenda item 24, and of the Security Council.
1/ United Nations, Treaty Series, Vol. 75, No. 973, p. 287.
Letter dated 24 October 1980 from the Chairman of the Committee on the
Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People to the
As Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People,, I have the honour to refer to the most recent developments in the case of the Mayors of Al Khalil (Hebron) and Kalhoul, who were arbitrarily and illegally expelled by the Israeli authorities from the occupied territories last May and who have been refused permission to return to their homes and families in spite of the Security Council's specific request contained in resolutions 468 (1980) and 469 (1960).
Earlier this month, in response largely to the pressure brought upon it by the international community, the Government of Israel permitted the two mayors to be present at the hearing of their appeal before the Military Review Board. However, as it turned out, they were not permitted to enter the occupied territories but were confined at the border post where the hearing was held.
According to reports, their appeal has been rejected and, while their lawyer attempts to carry their appeal further, they themselves continue to be held in confinement at the border post where, in protest against the unjust treatment meted out to them by the Israeli authorities, they have gone on a hunger strike.
On behalf of the Committee, I wish to express our gravest concern at this further defiance by the Israeli authorities of international opinion and of the resolutions of the Security Council, which no doubt is shared just as strongly by the members of the Council.
We feel it is essential that it should be brought to the notice of the Government of Israel that as a Member State it has certain obligations to this Organization and that such open defiance of the Security Council, the chief organ for the maintenance of international peace and security, is a clear reflection of the cynicism and arrogance on the part of Israel, which is not in keeping with its protestations of good faith and of its desire for peace.
It behoves the international community to protest strongly against these illegal actions of the Israeli authorities and to insist that the mayors should be permitted to return to their homes and families as requested by the Security Council.
I should be glad if this letter were circulated as a document of the General Assembly, under agenda item 24, and of the Security Council.
2. Security Council Adopts Resolution on the Status of Jerusalem
(Document S/RES/478 (1980))
The Security Council, at its 2245th meeting on 20 August 1980, censured the enactment by Israel of the "basic law" on Jerusalem which constitutes a violation of international Law. The Security Council took this action with the adoption of resolution 478 (1980). The result of the vote was 14 in favour to none against, with one abstention (United States). The Security Council meeting was requested by Pakistan. The full text of the Security Council resolution 478 (1980) is as follows:
The Security Council,
Recalling its resolution 476 (1960) of 30 June 1960,
Reaffirming again that the acquisition of territory by force is inadmissible,
Deeply concerned over the enactment of a "basic law" in the Israeli Knesset proclaiming a change in the character and status of the Holy City of Jerusalem, with its implications for peace and security,
Noting that Israel has not complied with Security Council resolution 476 (1980),
Reaffirming its determination to examine practical ways and means, in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Charter of the United Nations, to secure the full implementation of its resolution 476 (1980), in the event of non-compliance by Israel,
1. Censures in the strongest terms the enactment by Israel of the "basic law" on Jerusalem and the refusal to comply with relevant Security Council resolutions;
2. Affirms that the enactment of the "basic law" by Israel constitutes a violation of international law and does not affect the continued application of the Fourth Geneva Convention of 12 August 19**9 Relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War in the Palestinian and other Arab territories occupied since June 1967, including Jerusalem;
3. Determines that all legislative and administrative measures and actions taken by Israel, the occupying Power, which have altered or purport to alter the character and status of the Holy City of Jerusalem, and, in particular, the recent "basic law" on Jerusalem, are null and void and must be rescinded forthwith;
4. Affirms also that this action constitutes a serious obstruction to achieving a comprehensive, just and lasting peace in the Middle East;
5. Decides not to recognize the "basic law" and such other actions by Israel that, as a result of this law, seek to. alter the character and status of Jerusalem and calls upon all Members of the United Nations:
(a) to accept this decision;
(b) and upon those States that have established diplomatic Missions in Jerusalem to withdraw such Missions from the Holy City;
6. Requests the Secretary-General to report to the Security Council on the implementation of this resolution before 15 November 1960;
7. Decides to remain seized of this serious situation.
3. The Council of Ministers of the Organization of African Unity
adopts a resolution on the Palestine Question
The XXXVth ordinary session of the Council of Ministers of the Organization of African Unity convened in Freetown, Sierra Leone from 18 to 28 June 1980, adopted the following resolution on the Palestine question (CM/Res.787 (XXXV)):
The Council of Ministers of the Organization of African Unity meeting in its Thirty-fifth Ordinary Session held in Freetown, Sierra Leone, from 18 to 28 June 1980,
Having studied the OAU Secretary-General's Report on the development of the Palestine Question, (Document CM/1048(XXXV),
Having heard the statements made by various delegations and in particular the statement made by the Representative of the PLO,
Recalling the resolutions adopted at previous sessions of the Assembly of the Heads of State and Government on the Mid-Bast problem and Palestine Question,
Recalling further the Report of the United Nations Ad Hoc Committee on Palestine (Document A/34/35) which reaffirms the Palestinian people's national and inalienable rights to their homeland, including their right to return, to self-determination, to sovereignty and to establishment of an independent state on their soil,
Guided by the principles and objectives of OAU and UN Charters and common destiny of African and Arab peoples in their joint struggle against Zionism and racism for the sake of freedom, independence peace,
Recalling that the question of Palestine, including Jerusalem, is at the very core of the Middle East conflict, and that PLO is the sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people,
Reiterating the relevant resolutions of the OAU making the Palestinian cause both Arab and African cause,
Aware of the present serious situation created as a result of the continued occupation by Israel of Palestinian Arab territories, its refusal
"to comply with the United Nations General Assembly and Security Council resolutions, its determination to establish settlement areas in occupied Arab territories particularly Jerusalem and thus changing the demographic geographical, cultural and social features of Palestine,
Reaffirming the legitimate struggle being waged by the Palestinian people under the leadership of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) to recover their land and exercise their national rights,
Reaffirming further that a Just and lasting peace can only be achieved through the exercise by the Palestinian people of their inalienable rights, especially the right to return to their mother land and recover their national sovereignty, their self-determination without any foreign interference whatsoever, and the establishment of an independent state on their territory,
Considering that all partial agreements and separate treaties are greatly prejudicial to the Palestinian people, and further constitute violation of the principle of the right of the people to self-determination and independence,
Noting the decision to convene a Special Session of the ON General Assembly on the Palestinian issue,
Noting with concern that the alliance between the Zionist regime of Israel and the racist regime of South Africa aims at intensifying the acts of terrorism and genocide perpetrated against the peoples of Palestine and Southern Africa:
1. REAFFIRMS all resolutions already adopted on the Palestinian Question, and its all out and strong support to the Palestinian people led by its sole legitimate representative, the PLO, in its just struggle for the restoration of their usurped national rights, particularly their right to return to their homeland, to self-determination and to establish its independent sovereign state or its land;
2. CONDEMNS the machinations aimed at preventing the Palestinian people from exercising their right to self-determination to achieve their national aspiration-, freedom and total sovereignty, impose solutions that contradict this right and violate the resolutions of the UN General Assembly and the OAU as well as the initiative taken by some patties with an eye to taking measures and concluding agreements which would not take into consideration the aspirations of the Palestinian people and their legitimate representative, the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) to the detriment of their right to ensure their own destiny;
3. STRONGLY CONDEMNS Israel's expansionist, colonialist and segregationist and terrorist designs against the Palestinian people, its lenders and other Arab peoples, and in particular, the Lebanese people;
4. STRONGLY CONDEMNS FURTHER all partial agreements and separate treaties which constitute a flagrant violation of the rights of the Palestinian people, the principles of the OAU and UN Charters and the resolutions adopted in various international fora on the Palestine issue, and which prevent the realization of the Palestinian people's aspiration to return to their homeland, to self-determination and to exercise full sovereignty on their territories;
5. CONDEMNS FURTHER the collusion between the Zionist regime and the racist regime of South Africa, and calls upon all Member States to increase their efforts to encounter this danger and to strengthen the armed struggle against Zionism Racism, and Imperialism;
6. APPEALS to the International Community to further intensify its pressure on Israel in all fields to force it to abide by the UN Charter and the resolutions adopted on the Palestinian issue;
7. STRONGLY CONDEMNS the persistence of Israel's policies of annexation and Judaization of the city of Jerusalem, which constitutes a flagrant violation of relevant resolutions adopted by all international fora on this issue;
8. URGES Member States of the OAU to actively participate at Ministerial level, if possible, in the proceedings of the forthcoming Special Session of the General Assembly of the United Nations on the Palestinian Question which will start on July 22, 1960;
9. REQUESTS the Security Council to take effective measures to secure the exercising of the Palestinian people of their inalienable national right recognized by the UN General Assembly;
10. REQUESTS the OAU Secretary-General to follow the development of the Palestinian issue and to report back to the Council of Ministers at its next Ordinary Session."
At the sane session the following resolution oat Jerusalem was adopted (CM/Res.79l(XXXV)):
The Council of Ministers of the Organization of African Unity, meeting in its Thirty-fifth Ordinary Session in Freetown, Sierra Leone, from 18 to 28 June 1980,
Recalling all the resolutions of the OAU, the United Nations and the Conference of Hon-Aligned Countries on Jerusalem,
Considering that OAU has on several occasions firmly opposed the decision of Israel to consider Jerusalem as the capital of the Zionist territory,
Considering that the Palestinian Question, including Jerusalem is the crux of the Middle East problem,
Considering that Israel is persisting in its policy of aggression, expansionism, annexation, Zionist colonisation, and alteration of the cultural and demographic characteristics of Jerusalem,
Considering that Israel persists in its application and extension policy of Judaization of Jerusalem, and obliterating its Arab Character, in violation of the stipulations of the Fourth Geneva Convention of 12 August
4. Second United Nations Seminar on the
Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People
from 25-29 August 1980 in Vienna, Austria
1. In accordance with the terms of General Assembly resolution 34/65 D, the second United Nations Seminar on the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People took place at the Vienna International Centre, Vienna, Austria, from 25-29 August 1960. Numerous participants attended the meeting and discussed the various aspects of the question of Palestine, focussing attention on the inalienable rights of the Palestinian People.
2. The opening session .of the seminar on 25 August 1980 was addressed by Mr. Bans Georg Rudofsky, Head of the Division for the United Nations, Ministry for Foreign Affairs, Austria, who referred to Austria's deep commitment to contribute to all efforts for the establishment of a just and lasting peace through a comprehensive settlement based on full respect for the principles and purposes of the Charter of the United Nations. At the same session, His Excellency Mr. Falilou Kane, Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People gave a brief account of the Committee and its work and an evaluation of the Seventh Emergency Special Session on Palestine which took place in July this year.
3. In the course of the session, 15 panelists presented papers before the six panels established to consider different aspects of the central theme "The Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People".
4. These panels, the panelists and titles of the papers presented were as follows:
a) Panel 1: "The Fundamental Rights of the Palestinian People". Dr. Naseer Aruri (Palestinian) and Dr. W. Thomas Mallison (United States) presented papers entitled "Human Rights and the Israeli Occupation", and "The United Nations and the National Rights of the People in Palestine", respectively.
b) Panel 2: "Legal Issues in the Question of Palestine". Prof. Dominique Chevallier (France), Dr. Ingo Schoenfelder (German Democratic Republic) and Mr. Michael Adams (United Kingdom) presented papers entitled "The Legal and Psychological Value of the National Arguments of the Palestinians and International Opinion", "The Right to Self-Determination and the Establishment of a Palestinian Nation-State", and "The Universal Declaration of Human Rights and Israel's Occupation of the West Bank and Gaza".
c) Panel 3: "Israeli Settlement Policies in the Occupied Arab Territories". A paper was presented by Mrs. Sally V. Mallison (United States), entitled "A Juridical Analysis of the Israeli Settlements in the Occupied Territories".
d) Panel 4: "Human Rights and Palestine" Papers were presented by Dr. Sulayman Nyang (Gambia) and Dr. James J. Zogby (United States) entitled "A Study of African Opinions and Attitudes to the Palestinian Question" and "Palestinian Human Rights in the Context of the Historical Development of the Zionist Movement, respectively.
e) Panel 5: "The Nature of the Palestine Liberation Organization" Papers were presented by Dr. Anatoly A. Agaryshev (USSR), Dr. Hisham Sharabi (Palestinian), Dr. Archie Singham (Sri Lanka) and Mr. Sabri Jiryis (Palestinian), entitled "The Nature of the Palestine Liberation Organization", "The Non-Aligned Movement and the Internationalization of the Palestine Question", "The Development of the Palestine Liberation Organization Peace Policy", and "The Nature of the Palestine Liberation Organization", respectively.
f) Panel 6: "The Palestine Issue and Western Public Opinion". Dr. Edward Said (Palestinian), Dr. Thomas Chorherr (Austria) and Dr. Richard Stevens (United States) presented papers entitled "The Formation of American Public Opinion on the Question of Palestine", "Western Public Opinion and the Palestinian Problem", and "The Palestinian Issue and Western Public Opinion", respectively.
5. The discussions with which each session was concluded indicated general agreement amongst the participants on the main points raised by the panelists on the Question of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People.
5. The Inter-Parliamentary Union adopts a
Resolution on the Palestinian Question
The 1980 Autumn Session of the Inter-Parliamentary Union held in Berlin, German Democratic Republic, adopted the following resolution on the Palestinian question:*
The 67th Inter-Parliamentary Conference,
Recalling all the previous resolutions of the Inter-Parliamentary Union which refer to the appropriate resolutions of the United Nations on the Middle East and on the Palestinian problem,
Also recalling the resolutions of the UN Security Council and General Assembly on the Middle East problem, on the inalienable rights of the Palestinians, on Jerusalem and on Lebanon, particularly General Assembly resolutions 3236 (XXIX) and 3237 (XXIX) and resolutions adopted at the Special Session on 29 July 1980, as well as Security Council resolutions 476 of 30 June 1980 and 478 of 20 August 1980,
Aware of the growing tension affecting this region which constitutes a serious danger and renders a comprehensive and just solution to the Israeli-Arab problem more necessary and pressing than ever,
Considering that the establishment of peace in the Middle East is essential for all the. peoples of that area, the security of the Mediterranean basin and the maintenance of world peace,
Expressing the firm opinion that the time has come to promote the recognition and implementation of the principles universally accepted by the international community, namely:
(a) The right to existence and to security of all the States and peoples in the region;
(b) Justice for all the peoples, which implies the recognition of the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people;
(c) The inadmissibility of acquisition of territories by force;
(d) The right of every people to self-determination;
(e) The need for a just and durable peace in the Middle East;
(f) The Palestinian question dominating the situation of conflict in the Middle East;
(g) The fact that Israel's territorial occupation has been maintained since the conflict of 1967, the establishment of Israeli settlements and modifications to population and property in occupied Arab territories constitute sources of instability in the Middle East,
Recognizing the importance of the peace efforts made in the Middle East, Resolution adopted by 464 votes to 91 with 206 abstentions.
Pointing out with profound regret the Knesset's initiative in enacting a basic law annexing Arab Jerusalem to Israel and laying down plans to move Government offices to it (July 1980),
Condemning the raids and atrocities against refugee camps, cities and villages in Lebanon,
1. Reaffirms that all countries in the region are entitled to live in peace within secure, internationally recognized and guaranteed borders;
2. Confirms once again the call for immediate implementation of UN General Assembly and Security Council resolutions on the Palestinian question and the Middle East problem;
3. Agrees that the necessary guarantees for a peace settlement should be provided by the United Nations;
A. Affirms again that no durable and just peace can be established in the Middle East without total Israeli withdrawal from all occupied territories, including Arab Jerusalem and the Golan Heights, and also affirms that a just solution must finally be found to the Palestinian problem, which is not simply one of refugees;
5. Reaffirms that any just and lasting solution must be based on:
(a) The right of the Palestinians to self-determination, national independence and sovereignty and the establishment of their State, as well as the fact that the Palestinians, including the Palestine Liberation Organization, must be placed in a position, by an appropriate process defined within the framework of the comprehensive peace settlement, to exercise freely their right to self-determination;
(b) The right of the Palestine Liberation Organization, the legitimate representative of the Palestinian people, to participate on an equal footing in any efforts concerning the Palestinian question and the Middle East problem, in accordance with resolutions of the United Nations and within its framework;
(c) The right of the Palestinians to repatriation and the recovery of their land and property;
Recognizes the special importance of the role played by the question of Jerusalem for all the parties concerned and therefore condemns Israel's unilateral initiative designed to change the status of Jerusalem, and stresses that any agreement on the city's status should guarantee freedom of access for everyone to the Holy Places;
Condemns acts of aggression and atrocities recurrently committed by Israel against Lebanon whatever their reasons, particularly land, sea and air raids and attacks on Lebanese and Palestinian inhabitants of cities, villages and camps, which have caused heavy losses to life and property; also condemns acts of aggression committed by any party directly or indirectly against United Nations Peace-Keeping Forces, and the placing of obstacles in the way of UNIFIL personnel as they carry out their noble inter-national mission; demands the implementation of UN Security Council resolution 425 and the other relevant resolutions that followed;
Condemns all acts of terrorism against the civilian population;
Denounces Israeli practices in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip, such as confiscating lands, establishing settlements, detaining innocent people and passing unjust sentences on them, deporting mayors and refusing to investigate attempts on their lives as well as altering the natural and demographic composition of occupied Arab territories;
10. Welcomes the decision of those countries which have complied with Security Council resolution 478 by removing their embassies from Jerusalem; demands the continuation of diplomatic pressure until Israel responds to UN and IPU resolutions; and calls upon all States to comply with the Security Council resolutions of the United Nations;
11. Calls upon all Parliaments and parliamentarians to denounce any policy of force in this region, to condemn all procedures contrary to the law of nations and to international rules and adopt measures to cause Israel to implement United Nations resolutions on the Middle East so as to create a climate of confidence and initiate a process of comprehensive settlement of the conflict with a view to a just and lasting peace in the Middle Ease.**
*Resolution adopted by 464 votes to 91 with 206 abstentions.
** This resolution has been officially reproduced in document A/33/570 of the United Rations
Text of the Statement by the Chairman of the
Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable
Rights of the Palestinian People
H.E. Mr. F. Kane (Senegal), in the
World Parliament of Peoples for Peace
Sofia, Bulgaria, 23-27 September 1980
I am highly honoured that you should have invited me to address this august assembly of the World Peace Council. The Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, of which I am Chairman, is fully conscious of the responsibilities entrusted to it by the United Nations General Assembly under the terms of resolution 3376 (XXX), by which it was established. It therefore welcomes the growing interests which your organization, together with many others anxious to see international relations steer a steady course towards a lasting peace between peoples, is showing in the Palestinian question.
Even though regional conflicts involving one or more Powers have occurred since the Second World War, and have even come to the brink of a major conflagration, they have all been settled in time, by diplomacy. For a long time, the questions of Berlin, Korea, the Balkans, Suez, the former Belgian Congo and Viet Ham debated at the United Nations occupied the attention of the major chancelleries and monopolized the press headlines.
When these questions are raised today, it is probably only within restricted circles of historians, diplomats or students of international law and diplomacy, or among actual witnesses of or participants in these events.
This is unfortunately not the case with the Palestinian question, which has outlasted two world wars.
Brought into being by the Balfour Declaration of 1917, it was exacerbated following the creation of the State of Israel. Since that time, in spite of wars and armistice and disengagement agreements, including, most recently, the accords reached at Camp David and Washington, the Palestinian question continues to intrude itself like an incurable cancer, the affliction of the world in the twentieth century.
The most experienced mediators and conciliators, such as Count Bernadotte, Ralph Bunche, John Davis and Gunnar Jarring, to mention only a few, were unable to solve the problem. Neither have the 250 or so resolutions of the United Nations on the question been of any greater help.
The conflict pitting Israel and its Arab neighbours against each other, because of the Palestinian question, has now lasted more than 30 years.
This situation cannot long endure without seriously upsetting the political and strategic balance of the Middle East.
When account is taken of the world stake in oil and the sea routes and naval bases coveted by the great Powers in the Indian Ocean and littoral countries, the threat posed by the Palestinian conflict to the Middle East, in particular, and to world peace in general, can be appreciated at its true value.
Can the gravity of the question be denied?
We do not think so because, according to well-informed sources, Israel has had nuclear weapons since 1960.
The argument often used by those who promote or are well-disposed towards the Camp David accords seems, at first sight, persuasive. The intention, they say, is the no-war, no-peace situation between Israel and the Arab States, by mounting a dialogue between the parties to the Middle East conflict. However, a more penetrating examination leads to the realization that, as far as the rights of the Palestinians are concerned, the Camp David accords are deficient in a number of respects: legally you can dispose only of what is yours and you cannot make commitments on behalf of others; these accords, which contain a clause of autonomy for the Palestinians who are inside the occupied territories, thereby excluding millions of Palestinians who are outside them, do precisely that; politically, the accords were negotiated without the participation of those most directly concerned, namely the Palestinians themselves. They are, consequently, in conflict with the principle of self-determination, as recognised by international law and the Charter and resolutions of the United Nations; in terms of their effects, the accords, which place the fate of the Palestinians of the occupied territories in the hands of Israel, are more harmful than the Balfour declaration, which was merely a promise.
This being the case, one may well ask whether, in the absence of these accords, Israel would dare to continue its policy of annexing Jerusalem and the Arab and Palestinian territories occupied since
I shall have nothing more to say of the Camp David accords , which the Arabs and the Palestinians have rejected in their entirety, as has the United Nations. The latter, in resolution 34/65 B, paragraphs 2 and 3 states that it:
"Rejects those provisions of the accords which ignore, infringe, violate or deny the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, including the right of return, the right of self-determination and the right to national independence and sovereignty in Palestine, in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations and which envisage and condone continued Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories occupied by Israel since 1967;
"Strongly condemns all partial agreements and separate treaties which constitute a flagrant violation of the rights of the Palestinian people, the principles of the Charter and the resolutions adopted in the various international forums on the Palestinian issue;"
True, there are eminent Zionists who dispute that the accords have as much value as their promoter like to think.
Hahum Goldman, former President of the World Jewish Congress said (Jeune Afrique. No. 10019, May 7, 1980):
"The Egyptian-Israeli agreement has divided the Arab world. In time of war, inter-Arab dissensions are in Israel's favour; but, when peace is the objective, Arab unity is a necessity, for no separate peace covering only a fraction of the Arab world can last."
The test of time has also shown that, with the exception of the Israeli withdrawal from part of Sinai, these separate agreement have, on the contrary, had a negative effect, and have aggravated tensions in the occupied territories and the Arab world.
Egypt is today the outcast of the greater Arab family. The time has come for it to understand that its role, the destiny of its people, and its history are closely linked to those of its brother nations. It leaders should freeze and break off the autonomy talks now in progress, if only to bring their deeds into line with their words.
So what else is there?
The United Nations seems to us the most appropriate framework in which to discuss the question. Moreover, the General Assembly declared in resolution 33/28 that:
Indeed, it is at the United Nations where the opinion and will of 153 countries is best expressed; it is in that framework alone that a global and lasting settlement of the conflict should be sought and found.
The problem of the Middle East has been before the United Nations ever since the Organization was first established. It very soon became apparent that the Question of Palestine was at the heart of the problem, and that the settlement of that problem was the condition sine qua non of a Just and lasting peace in the region.
In resolution 181 (II), adopted in 1947, the General Assembly recognised the right of the Arab people of Palestine to have an independent State in Palestine, side by side with the Jewish people. Unfortunately, the resolution was only implemented in part, and only a Jewish State was created. That should not lead to the deduction that neither that resolution nor resolution 194 (III), adopted in 19^8, under the provisions of which the General Assembly had resolved that refugees wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbours should be permitted to do so at the earliest practicable date, was any longer applicable, quite the contrary. It was the situation in which the Palestinians found themselves, a situation far from conducive to the exercise of their right to self-determination, which created the principal obstacle to the implementation of these resolutions. The dispersion of the Palestinians to neighbouring States, the occupation by Israel since 1967 of the whole of that part of Palestine which under General Assembly resolution 181 (II) rightfully belonged to the Palestinians, as well as the state of war between Israel and the Arab states, are certainly not propitious circumstances in which to exercise the right to self-determination.
For a long time, only the humanitarian aspects of the problem attracted attention. A twenty-seven-year wait – during which the political aspects of the Palestinian problem were pushed into the background – occurred before people started seriously to take into consideration the national rights of the Palestinian people. During the 1970s the General Assembly, turning its attention increasingly to the political aspects of the Palestinian problem, adopted at its twenty-ninth session in 1974 resolution 3236 (XXIX), in which it reaffirmed the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, including the right to self-determination without external interference, the right to national independence and sovereignty, and the right of Palestinians to return to their homes and property from which they had been displaced and uprooted.
Resolution 3236 (XXIX) was followed twelve months later by resolution 3375 (XXX), which invited the Palestine Liberation Organization, the representative of the Palestinian people, to participate in all peace efforts under the auspices of the United Nations, on an equal footing with other parties. These resolutions marked a turning-point in United Nations efforts to restore to the Palestinian people their legitimate rights. However, in 1975, the General Assembly, noting the failure to put these recommendations into effect, set up the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People. This Committee, which I have the honour to chair, has drawn up and submitted to the Assembly a programme to enable the Palestinian people to exercise the rights recognized in resolution 3236 (XXIX), taking into account in the formulation of its recommendations "all the powers conferred by the Charter upon the principal organs of the United Nations."
The Committee's work has been based upon the following principles:
(a) The question of Palestine being at the heart of the Middle East problem, no solution can be envisaged which does not fully take into account the legitimate aspirations of the Palestinian people;
(b) The exercise of the inalienable right of the Palestinian people to return to their homes and to achieve self-determination, national independence and sovereignty will contribute to a settlement of the middle East crisis;
(c) The participation of the Palestine Liberation Organization, the representative of the Palestinian people, on an equal footing with other parties, on the basis of General Assembly resolutions 3236 (XXIX) and 3375 (XXX) is indispensable in all efforts, deliberations and conferences on the Middle East which are held under the auspices of the United Nations;
(d) The acquisition of territory by force is inadmissible, with the consequent obligation for Israel of the speedy evacuation of territory so occupied.
The Committee submitted recommendations to the General Assembly for the first time in November 1976. Since then the Assembly has regularly adopted them, in 1977, 1978, 1979 and, most recently, at the seventh emergency special session, held in July 1980. Unfortunately, the Security Council, whose role in the implementation of the recommendations is decisive, has been unable to reach a decision on the matter because of the veto of one of its permanent members.
Despite this deadlock, I remain convinced that the United Nations has an essential role to play in the settlement of the Palestinian question. It is not too much to ask of it. It has the competence. It also has the power. But it is the will, of one permanent member of the Security Council in particular, which is lacking. For this reason, when the right of veto was again exercised as recently as 30 April 1960, thereby preventing the Security Council from taking effective measures, on the recommendation of the Committee, in my capacity as representative of Senegal and as Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, I requested the Secretary-General to convene an emergency special session of the General Assembly devoted to the question of Palestine.
As you know, that session was held in July 1980. Its importance can be gauged from the fact that more than thirty Foreign Ministers took part and some 110 Member States spoke in the debate. The majority of those participating in its week-long deliberations spoke out unequivocally in defence of the cause of the Palestinian people, as can be appreciated from the vote on the resolution, which was adopted by the Assembly by 112 votes in favour, 7 against, with 24 abstentions. The most notable fact is that the majority of Western European countries, which had always voted against any resolution produced by the Committee in which the rights of the Palestinian people were reaffirmed, this time softened their position and abstained in the vote, even though the resolution goes much farther than previous resolutions on the question, since it requests the Security Council to consider, if necessary, the adoption of effective measures under Chapter VII of the Charter (an allusion to the sanctions for which provision is made in Articles 41 and 42).
Of course, since the summit meeting held in June last, there had been a presentiment of a change in attitude on the part of the Western countries. The decision taken by the European countries at Vendee was an important milestone on the road to their recognition of the rights of the Palestinian people. Their abstentions in the vote at the emergency special session were obviously motivated by a desire not to take sides in order not to compromise the initiatives planned at Venice. It is clear, however, that on the question of Palestine Western Europe will come to accept the facts and the geopolitical reality, to the advantage of the Palestinians.
The attitude of the media, which are beginning, albeit timidly, to take a broader and more objective view of the developing situation in the region, has played no small part in helping to bring this change about. For many years, particularly in the United States, they refused to do that, and the tendentious presentation of the facts unfortunately had the effect of always portraying the Palestinian people in an unfavourable light or of ignoring them completely. This is no longer the case. The reporting of events in the region has changed perceptibly and this is an important step towards a better understanding of the problem. In its conviction that full knowledge of the facts of the Palestinian question would lead to a better understanding of the problem, and that the international community would then become convinced of the Justice of the Palestinian cause, the Committee has striven to make the facts known, not only to those ready to listen, but also to those who so far have always refused to do so.
In 1977 the General Assembly requested the Secretary-General to establish within the Secretariat of the United Nations a Special Unit on Palestinian Bights which, under the guidance of and in consultation with the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People would prepare and disseminate studies and publications relating to the question of Palestine in order to help bring about a better understanding of the problem. Over the past two years the Unit has prepared several studies which have proved extremely useful.
In addition, the United Nations Department of Public Information, in consultation with the Committee, has made a film on the rights of the Palestinians entitled "Palestinians Do Have Rights." This is worth mentioning, as the film won the second prize at the twenty-second American Annual Film Festival, organized by the Educational Film Library Association of New York.
All these efforts have borne fruit. During the past eighteen months there has been a radical change in public opinion on the question. Apart from such large international organizations as the Non-Aligned Movement the Organization of African Unity (OAU) and the Organization of the Islamic Conference, which have from the outset understood the true nature of the Palestine question and have repeatedly affirmed their solidarity with the Palestinian people, the countries of Western Europe have recently, as I noted earlier, displayed a better understanding of the aspirations of the Palestinian people, and have shown themselves ready to join with the defenders of the Palestinian cause.
The question arises of whether the United Nations is able to resolve the Palestinian conflict. It is generally recognized that, since the question was introduced by Great Britain in 1947, the United Nations has been incapable of finding an acceptable settlement, although the Organization has devoted more time to this than to any other subject, having adopted over 250 resolutions on it. And yet the problem seems to be more tangled than ever.
The international community should therefore continue to impress on Israel the illegality of many of the acts that have marked the various stages of its existence, including the continuing occupation of Arab and Palestinian territories; the acquisition of territory by force, which is inadmissible; the establishment of settlements to those territories; the serious and repeated violation of the fourth Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949; the annexation of the city of Jerusalem, and thus the violation of its historical religious character; and the violation of the human rights of the Palestinians by attacks, expulsions and the humiliation of their elected representatives, which runs counter to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Nor is that list exhaustive.
All those acts and decisions of Israel have been condemned by to United Nations.
Israel, with the support of the United States, is behaving as if it alone, in opposition to the whole world, could make the biblical drawn of its leaders come true by territorial annexation and the domination of the whole region. By force and intimidation, and by a policy of faits accomplis, it believes that lone it can prevail against the majority of the members of the General Assembly.
Israel's present leaders, who often speak of history but seem to have learned nothing from it, and who think they can subjugate the Arabs and the Palestinians by force of arms, should remember that larger and more powerful empires have crumbled in the same area where they now try to impose their domination; and that Napoleon, who spent his whole life fighting real battles, winning wars and conquering distant nations and countries, finally recognized that there were two powers in the world, the sword and the spirit, and that in the end, the sword would always be conquered by the spirit.
After many vetoes by the United States in the Security Council on every occasion when the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People raised the question of Palestine pursuant to General Assembly resolution 34/65 A, it was decided to convene an emergency special session on the question from 22 to 29 July 1980.
General Assembly resolution ES-7/2 set the date of 15 November 1980 as the time-limit by which Israel's withdrawal from the occupied territories should begin. It should be noted that that date was not chosen haphazardly. By that date the American elections will be over and can no longer be used as a pretext or subterfuge for evading responsibility.
Western Europe will have understood this, after the Middle East tour of the President of the Council of Ministers of the European Economic Community.
The Security Council met recently, at the request of the member countries of the Organization of the Islamic Conference, and on 20 August 1980 adopted a resolution on Jerusalem declaring null and void the legislative measures adopted by the Israeli Knesset annexing the Holy City. Since Israel has not yet complied with the provisions of the resolution, the countries with embassies in Jerusalem have all decided to withdraw them; the consulates have also been closed and one country, Switzerland, has refused to sign an agreement with the Israeli Government dealing with social security in the city of Jerusalem.
The international community has thus shown, in no uncertain terms, that it firmly refused to recognize the Israeli diktat in Jerusalem.
If all those who are still supporting Israel exerted real pressure on it, that country could not resist indefinitely without its actions resulting in damage to its economy and the stability of its regime. The recent statistics on Jewish emigration to other Western countries (United States, Canada, Australia) show that the Zionist and racist propaganda which attracted Jews and nobody else is now meeting with resistance. And the time is not far away when, as in Rhodesia under the regime of racist minority domination under Ian Smith, the Israelis leaving the country to seek a haven elsewhere will outnumber those who still want to settle in Israel.
A return to General Assembly resolution 181 (II) on partition appears inevitable if there is to be a lasting and definitive solution to the Palestine question. It is the legal basis for all the United Nations resolutions. It should therefore allow the Palestinians to realize their aspirations, namely, the right to return to their homeland, and the right to establish a sovereign and independent state.
That is the only way of granting the Palestinians the minimum of justice and achieving a comprehensive and peaceful settlement of the problem. The United Nations, by returning to the solution advocated at the outset, even 33 years later, will not be reversing its stand.
All that could, of course, be achieved without resorting to the coercive measures envisaged in the Charter, provided that the Israeli party accepts the only peaceful solution left, and above all if it is willing at last to be one Semite State among the Semites of the region.
However, if on 15 November the withdrawal from the occupied territories called for by the General Assembly has not begun, and if Israel continues to reject with its customary arrogance this last appeal, the only remaining course is to invoke the sanctions provided in article 41 of the Charter. There is no other way out. The Security Council will have to face its responsibilities, in accordance with article 24.
However, if the Security Council fails to live up to its obligations, which may well happen, if the United States maintains its blind support for Israel, then we must invoke General Assembly resolution 377 A (V), "United for peace."
On two previous occasions that resolution has enabled the General Assembly to act when there was a deadlock in the Security Council: in 1956, at the time of Suez, and in 1960 during the Congo crisis. In those two cases the direct action of the General Assembly proved effective and its decisions were applied.
The emergency special session of the General Assembly in July 1980 marked an irreversible turn in the consideration of the Palestine question in the United Nations. Since then informed observers have noted a wind of change. There were:
1. The abstentions of the European countries at the emergency special session of the General Assembly on the question of Palestine (22 to 29 July 1980).
2. There was the submission by the European members of the Security Council (France, United Kingdom, Portugal and Norway) of the resolution on Jerusalem, on which they voted affirmatively just a few days ago. That was the first resolution on the question of Palestine submitted by the Security Council in a very long time.
3. There has been the withdrawal from Jerusalem of all the embassies previously located there.
4. Major religious bodies have denounced the unilateral decision by-Israel on Jerusalem. An example is the World Council of Churches, which has just met in Geneva. On several occasions the Vatican has spoken on the subject, including after the visit of King Hassan II of Morocco in his capacity as Chairman of the Al Quds Committee of the Organization of the Islamic Conference.
The fact that there are persistent rumours of new measures to be taken by a number of countries on the question is sufficient to show that no political leader can remain indifferent to what is happening in the Middle East. No steps should be neglected, and all the forces of peace should be mobilized to persuade Israel and its friends to accept a dialogue with the PLO, the sole legitimate representative of the people of Palestine, and to seek a lasting agreement with the PLO in accordance with the United Nations resolutions.
In the world of today, where serious tensions are continually arising, and uncertainty is becoming the rule rather than the exception, we cannot allow a situation which is a serious threat to the peace and life of millions to deteriorate indefinitely. The time has come to act. We must grasp the olive branch of which Chairman Arafat spoke in the United Rations in 1974. Tomorrow may be too late.
Document Type: Bulletin, Monthly Bulletin, Publication
Document Sources: African Union (See also - Organization of African Unity (OAU)), Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People (CEIRPP), Division for Palestinian Rights (DPR), Inter-Parliamentary Union, Security Council, Special Unit on Palestinian Rights (SUPR) (See also - CEIRPP > DPR)
Subject: Inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, Jerusalem, Palestine question
Publication Date: 31/10/1980