Wednesday, 17 December 1975, at 11.45 a.m.
President: Mr. Gaston THORN
1. The PRESIDENT (interpretation from French): The first pending appointment relates to agenda item 27, and concerns the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People. Under General Assembly resolution 3376 (XXX) of 10 November 1975, operative paragraph 3, the Assembly decided to establish a committee composed of 20 Member States to be appointed by the General Assembly at the current session. I call on the representative of Senegal who, as members will recall, had proposed that resolution.
2. Mr. FALL (Senegal) (interpretation from French): As members will recall, during the meeting of the Assembly on 10 November 1975 on the question of Palestine [2399th meeting], I spoke before the vote on the draft resolution in document A/L.770 and Add.l in order to give some clarification on operative paragraph 3 of that draft, which called for the establishment of a Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People.
3. I stated at that time that that Committee would be composed of 20 members to be appointed by the General Assembly during the current session. After the consultations which have taken place among various delegations, I have been informed that the following countries have expressed the desire to be members of that Committee. Discussions have taken place with the various parties concerned and I have been authorized by the sponsors of the draft resolution which was adopted at the plenary meeting on 10 November [resolution 3376 (XXX)] to submit for the approval of the Assembly the following list of members of that Committee: Afghanistan, Cuba, Cyprus, German Democratic Republic, Guinea, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Laos, Madagascar, Malaysia, Malta, Pakistan, Romania, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Tunisia, Turkey, Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic and Yugoslavia.
4. The General Assembly has already adopted the resolution on this question; it has agreed that the Committee should be made up of 20 members. All that remains, therefore, is to designate those 20 members. I have just presented their names. I therefore hope that the Assembly will approve the proposal that I have just presented on behalf of the sponsors of the draft resolution.
5. Mr. HERZOG (Israel): In order to avoid any misunderstanding I wish formally to declare on behalf of my Government that it will in no way cooperate with the proposed Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People. This Committee arises out of resolution 3376 (XXX), which is entirely one-sided, biased and partial and is a resolution which by its very nature is irreconcilable with the process of negotiation towards peace in the Middle East. Accordingly we reject this Committee out of hand and will have none of it.
6. As I have pointed out to the Assembly, no advance has been made in the Middle East without negotiation. Furthermore, no negotiation has taken place without an advance being made. The process of negotiation for the purpose of achieving peace in the Middle East is based on Security Council resolutions 242 (1967) and 338 (1973). On the basis of these resolutions the Peace Conference on the Middle East has been convened at Geneva by the Co-Chairmen, the United States of America and the Soviet Union. Within that broad framework, three agreements have already been reached in the Middle East by Israel two with Egypt and one with Syria. The Government of Israel has announced that it is prepared to renew discussions at Geneva on the basis of the convening letter originally sent out by the Soviet Union and the United States of America.
7. In the past few months the representatives of the Government of Syria and other Arab delegations, including the representatives of the Palestine Liberation Organization, have announced in the Assembly and on other occasions that it is their avowed intention to destroy the present negotiating process prevailing in the Middle East and to annul the existing agreements which have been reached in the Middle East. In implementation of their plan, resolution 3376 (XXX) was introduced and, in defiance of the Charter of the United Nations, the whole concept of negotiation was eliminated from it. Believe it or not, the Assembly has given its hand to the elimination of a process of negotiation towards peace which is under way in the Middle East. In furtherance of its purpose to eliminate negotiations, this resolution also established the Committee under discussion, with which we will not be associated.
8. A further step in the furtherance of this sinister purpose of destroying the process of negotiation towards peace in the Middle East is the convening of the Security Council meeting on 12 January 1976. This is a tragic retrograde step. My Government will in no way cooperate with any moves designed to undermine the basis of negotiation towards peace in the Middle East as evolved in Security Council resolutions 242 (1967) and 338 (1973), either on a bilateral basis or within the framework of the Peace Conference on the Middle East. We will not agree to any move made to destroy the process of negotiation and hence the Government of Israel will not cooperate with or indeed recognize this Committee.
9. The Government of Israel's policy on the Palestinian Arab problem was clearly enunciated by my Foreign Minister before the General Assembly [2368th meeting].
10. May I repeat again, as a final observation to the Assembly, that the Government of Israel is prepared at all times to negotiate towards a just and lasting peace within the framework of the Peace Conference on the Middle East or on a bilateral basis with all States parties to the Middle East conflict, without any preconditions whatsoever, either as to the substance of the discussions or the participants in the negotiations.
11. The greatest tragedy of this infamous Assembly has been the fact that it has taken such giant steps in contravention of the Charter of the United Nations towards eliminating the process of negotiation towards peace in the Middle East.
12. Mr. President, may I in conclusion take this opportunity to express to you, as President of the Assembly, my highest regard for the exemplary manner in which you have conducted its proceedings, for your wise leadership and guidance and for the fairness and impartiality which. have guided you.
13. The PRESIDENT (interpretation from French):
I believe that, while the Assembly will have noted the statement of the representative of Israel on behalf of his delegation, it may be considered that the Assembly wishes to appoint as members of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People the following 20 countries: Afghanistan, Cuba, Cyprus, German Democratic Republic, Guinea, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Laos, Madagascar, Malaysia, Malta, Pakistan, Romania, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Tunisia, Turkey, Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic, Yugoslavia. If I hear no objection, I shall take it that the Assembly agrees to the proposal of the representative of Senegal.
It was so decided.
14. The PRESIDENT (interpretation from French): The second appointment concerns agenda item 122 and relates to the Special Committee on the Complete and General Prohibition of Nuclear Weapon Tests. Operative paragraph 2 of General Assembly resolution 3478 (XXX) of 11 December 1975, calls upon all nuclear weapon States to enter into negotiations not later than 31 March 1976, and invites 25 to 30 nonnuclear weapon States, to be appointed by the President of the General Assembly after consultations with all regional groups, to participate in those negotiations.
15. As may be imagined, I had hoped to be able to announce the composition of the Special Committee before the closing of the session, but it has not been possible. Of course, it was not just a matter of my own good will. I am therefore obliged to follow the precedents established at earlier sessions and to defer the announcements of the composition of that body until such time as the negotiations have been completed.
16. Does any delegation wish to speak on this point? May I count on the understanding of the General Assembly? It appears so.
It was so decided.
17. The PRESIDENT (interpretation from French): May I now refer to a vacancy on the Board of Governors of the United Nations Special Fund. Members will recall that at the 2432nd plenary meeting, on 9 December 1975, the General Assembly elected 12 members of the Board of Governors with the understanding that the third candidacy from the Group of Western European and other States would be communicated subsequently.
18. I have been informed by the Chairman of the Group that it is not yet in a position to nominate the last candidate. Therefore I should like to suggest that, in accordance with the procedure followed at the twenty-ninth session, the General Assembly authorize the Economic and Social Council at its organizational session in 1976 to elect the additional member from among the States constituting the Group of Western European and other States. If there is no objection to this procedure, it will be so decided.
It was so decided.
The meeting rose at noon.