The Second Committee (Economic and Financial) today approved eight draft resolutions, including one calling on Israel to cease exploitation of the occupied Palestinian territory and Syrian Golan.
Also by that text, “permanent sovereignty of the Palestinian people in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem, and of the Arab population in the occupied Syrian Golan over their natural resources”, the General Assembly would call upon Israel to comply with its obligations under international law and to cease all policies and measures aimed at the alteration of the character and status of the occupied Palestinian territory.
The Committee approved the text (document A/C.2/72/L.40) in a recorded vote of 157 in favour, to 6 against (Canada, Israel, Marshall Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Nauru, United States), with 11 abstentions.
By other terms, the Assembly would call upon Israel to halt all actions harming the environment, cease destruction of vital infrastructure, remove obstacles to the implementation of critical environmental projects, cease efforts which impeded Palestinian development and export of discovered oil and natural gas reserves, as well as support the immediate and safe removal of all unexploded ordnance.
Next, the Committee took up the draft resolution “permanent sovereignty of the Palestinian people in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem, and of the Arab population in the occupied Syrian Golan over their natural resources” (document A/C.2/72/L.40).
Ecuador’s representative, speaking on behalf of the “Group of 77” developing countries and China, made a technical correction.
The representative of Israel said the resolution was a shameful and “one-sided attempt” by Palestinians to exploit the Committee. The draft text diminished the quality of the Committee. The report and resolution were one-sided and selective in information. She said Gaza was controlled by a terrorist organization, Hamas, which misused the financial and economic resources at its disposal. Palestinians failed to take responsibility for their own actions and sought to distract from fundamental issues by “pointing the finger” at Israel. Her country would vote against the resolution and she urged other States to do the same.
The representative of Saudi Arabia stressed the need for an agenda to end Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories. A comprehensive solution must be found to ensure the growth of the Palestinian economy. He called on all to uphold humanitarian principles and vote for the resolution in restoring Palestinian land to its people. Adding that tyranny had reached an unprecedented limit, he said it was time to respect human rights and establish an independent Palestinian State with Jerusalem as its capital.
The Committee then approved the draft, as orally revised, in a recorded vote of 157 in favour to 6 against, with 11 abstentions.
Bulgaria’s delegate, speaking on behalf of the European Union, put on record that the use of the term “Palestine” could not be construed as recognition of the State of Palestine.
The representative of the State of Palestine said the resolution confirmed the inalienable rights of his people over their natural resources. Israel’s occupation of territories and exploitation of resources were in violation of international law. He called on Israel to cease exploitation of Palestinian natural resources, and end destruction of Palestinian properties and practices that damaged the natural environment. Noting previous General Assembly and Security Council decisions, he called for an end of attempts to alter Jerusalem, the end of Israeli settlement activities, the cessation of the destruction of Palestinian properties and the displacement of his people. He called on all States to review their relationships with Israeli settlements on occupied territories and oppose such activities by refraining from investments which supported those settlements.
Document Sources: Department of Public Information (DPI), General Assembly, General Assembly Second Committee (Economic and Financial)
Country: Israel, Syria
Subject: Economic issues, Environmental issues, Human rights and international humanitarian law, Inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, Living conditions, Natural resources, Occupation
Publication Date: 17/11/2017
URL source: http://www.un.org/press/en/2017/gaef3489.doc.htm