UNITED NATIONS RESOLUTIONS ON ISRAEL
General Assembly Resolution 194
The third session of the General Assembly refused to accept any decision altering the Partition Resolution of the preceding year, nor did it decide on ways of its implementation. Instead, it decided to set up a United Nations Conciliation Commission, reiterated the decision on internationalization of Jerusalem, and laid down several principles on the refugee question. Text of Resolution 194 (III) follows:
Nov. 12, 1948. The General Assembly, having considered further the situation in Palestine,
1.Expresses its deep appreciation of the progress achieved through the good offices of the late United Nations Mediator in promoting a peaceful adjustment of the future situation of Palestine, for which cause he sacrificed his life; and
Extends its thanks to the Acting Mediator and his staff for their continued efforts and devotion to duty in Palestine;
2. Establishes a Conciliation Commission consisting of three States Members of the United Nations which shall have the following functions:
(a) To assume, in so far as it considers necessary in existing circumstances, the functions given to the United Nations Mediator on Palestine by the resolution of the General Assembly of 14 May 1948;
(b) To carry out the specific functions and directives given to it by the present resolution and such additional functions and directives as may be given to it by the General Assembly or by the Security Council;
(c) To undertake, upon the request of the Security Council, any of the functions now assigned to the United Nations Mediator on Palestine or to the United Nations Truce Commission by resolutions of the Security Council; upon such request to the Conciliation Commission by the Security Council with respect to all the remaining functions of the United Nations Mediator on Palestine under Security Council resolutions, the office of the Mediator shall be terminated;
3. Decides that a Committee of the Assembly, consisting of China, France, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, the United Kingdom and the United States of America, shall present, before the end of the first part of the present session of the General Assembly, for the approval of the Assembly, a proposal concerning the names of the three States which will constitute the Conciliation Commission;
4. Requests the Commission to begin its functions at once, with a view to the establishment of contact between the parties themselves and the Commission at the earliest possible date;
5. Calls upon >the Governments and authorities concerned to extend the scope of the negotiations provided for in the Security Council's resolution of 16 November 1948 and to seek agreement by negotiations conducted either with the Conciliation Commission or directly with a view to the final settlement of all questions outstanding between them;
6. Instructs the Conciliation Commission to take steps to assist the Government and authorities concerned to achieve a final settlement of all questions outstanding between them;
7. Resolves that the Holy Places - including Nazareth - religious buildings and sites in Palestine should be protected and free access to them assured, in accordance with existing rights and historical practice that arrangements to this end should be under effective United Nations supervision; that the United Nations Conciliation Commission, in presenting to the fourth regular session of the General Assembly its detailed proposal for a permanent international regime for the territory of Jerusalem, should include recommendations concerning the Holy Places in that territory; that with regard to the Holy Places in the rest of Palestine the Commission should call upon the political authorities of the areas concerned to give appropriate formal guarantees as to the protection of the Holy Places and access to them; and that these undertakings should be presented to the General Assembly for approval;
8. Resolves that, in view of its association with three world religions, the Jerusalem area, including the present municipality of Jerusalem plus the surrounding villages and towns, the most Eastern of which shall be Abu Dis; the most Southern, Bethlehem; the most Western, Ein Karim (including also the built-up area of Motsa); and the most Northern, Shu'fat, should be accorded special and separate treatment from the rest of Palestine and should be placed under effective United Nations control;
Requests the Security Council to take further steps to ensure the demilitarization of Jerusalem at the earliest possible date;
Instructs the Conciliation Commission to present to the fourth regular session of the General Assembly detailed proposals for a permanent international regime for the Jerusalem area which will provide for the maximum local autonomy for distinctive groups consistent with the special international status of the Jerusalem area;
The Conciliation Commission is authorized to appoint a United Nations representative who shall cooperate with the local authorities with respect to the interim administration of the Jerusalem area;
9. Resolves that, pending agreement on more detailed arrangements among the Governments and authorities concerned, the freest possible access to Jerusalem by road, rail or air should be accorded to all inhabitants of Palestine;
Instructs the Conciliation Commission to report immediately to the Security Council, for appropriate action by that organ, any attempt by any party to impede such access;
10. Instructs the Conciliation Commission to seek arrangements among the Governments and authorities concerned which will facilitate the economic development of the area, including arrangements for access to ports and airfields and the use of transportation and communication facilities;
11. Resolves that the 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, and that compensation should be paid for the property of those choosing not to return and for loss of or damage to property which, under principles of international law or in equity, should be made good by the Governments or authorities responsible;
Instructs the Conciliation Commission to facilitate the repatriation, resettlement and economic and social rehabilitation of the refugees and the payment of compensation, and to maintain close relations with the Director of the United Nations Relief for Palestine Refugees and, through him, with the appropriate organs and agencies of the United Nations;
12. Authorizes the Conciliation Commission to appoint such subsidiary bodies and to employ such technical experts, acting under its authority, as it may find necessary for the effective discharge of its functions and responsibilities under the present resolution;
The Conciliation Commission will have its official headquarters at Jerusalem. The authorities responsible for maintaining order in Jerusalem will be responsible for taking all measures necessary to ensure the security of the Commission. The Secretary-General will provide a limited number of guards for the protection of the staff and premises of the Commission;
13. Instructs the Conciliation Commission to render progress reports periodically to the Secretary-General for transmission to the Security Council and to the Members of the United Nations;
14. Calls upon all Governments and authorities concerned to cooperate with the Conciliation Commission and to take all possible steps to assist in the implementation of the present resolution;
15. Requests the Secretary-General to provide the necessary staff and facilities and to make appropriate arrangements to provide the necessary funds required in carrying out the terms of the present resolution.
UNITED NATIONS RESOLUTION 242, 1967.
Stating the principles of a just and lasting peace in the Middle East
The Security Council,
Expressing its continuing concern with th grave situation in the Middle East,
Emphasizing the inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by war and the need to work for a just and lasting peace in which every state in the area can live in security ,
Emphasizing further that all Member States in their acceptance of the Charter of the United Nations have undertaken a commitment to act in accordance with Article 2 of the Charter.
Affirms that the fulfillment of Charter principles requires the establishment of a just and lasting peace in the Middle East which should include the application of both the following principles:
(I) Withdrawal of Israel armed forces from territories occupied in the recent conflict (according to the French version, des territories occupes)
(II) Termination of all claims or states of belligerency and respect for and acknowledgment of the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of every state in the area and their right to live in peace within secure and recognized boudaries free from threats of acts of force;
2. Affirms further the necessity
(a) For guaranteeing freedom of navigation through international waterways in the area;
(b) For achieving a just settlement of the refugee problem;
(c) For guaranteeing the territorial inviolability and political independence of every State in the area, through measure including the establishment of demilatarized zones;
3. Requests the Secretary-General to designate a Special Representative to proceed to the Middle East to establish and maintain contacts with the States concerned in order to promote agreement and assist efforts to achieve a peaceful and accepted settlement in accordance with the provisions and principles in this resolution;
4. Requests the Secretary-General to report to the Security Council on the progress of the efforts of the Special Representative as soon as possible.
Adopted unanimously at the 1382nd meeting
EYE ON THE MEDIA: Stumbling on Resolution 242
By Andrea Levin
(August 3) The July Camp David summit aimed at reaching epic decisions about the future of Israel and the Palestinians drew intense media review of the remaining issues under negotiation: borders, Jerusalem, refugees. Although the Oslo Process has been under way for seven years, blunders about the basics, including United Nations Resolution 242, were commonplace.
That Resolution, the bedrock legal reference contained in the 1993 Declaration of Principles, is said by the Palestinians to require Israel to leave the entire West Bank. Palestinian commentator Gassan Khatib, for example, said in a July 11 segment of ABC's Nightline "for the Palestinians, we're talking about implementing Security Council Resolution 242, which calls for ending the illegal occupation of Israel over the Palestinian occupied territories."
Is Israel legally compelled to exit from all the land it has controlled since the conclusion of a war that was launched to destroy it? The language of 242 was hammered out with great precision to take account of Israel's vulnerable pre-1967 borders and to avert future aggression. Britain's UN ambassador in 1967, Lord Caradon, an author of the Resolution, argued that: "It would have been wrong to demand that Israel return to its positions of June 4, 1967, because those positions were undesirable and artificial."
The American UN ambassador at the time, former Supreme Court Justice Arthur Goldberg, said 242 omitted reference to Israel's withdrawing from "the" or "all" territories in order to enable "less than a complete withdrawal of Israeli forces from occupied territory, inasmuch as Israel's prior frontiers had proved to be notably insecure."
Nevertheless, The New York Times reported on July 11: "The Palestinians want a settlement based on United Nations Resolution 242, which calls for an end to Israeli occupation of the entire West Bank and Gaza, seized in the 1967 war."
Three days later the paper issued a correction stating that 242 "calls for the withdrawal of Israeli armed forces "from territories occupied in the recent conflict; it is the Palestinians who associate that language with the West Bank and the Gaza Strip."
The Boston Globe also referred erroneously to 242 , reporting (July 13) that the resolution "calls for Israeli withdrawal from the West Bank." To the newspaper's credit, an admirably straightforward clarification was issued one day later. It said: "A story in yesterday's edition on the Mideast summit at Camp David should have made it clear that UN Resolution 242 does not refer to the West Bank by name but calls for Israel to withdraw from territories occupied in the 1967 war. The resolution, which formalizes the principles of land-for-peace in the Israeli-Arab conflict, is ambiguous on the amount of occupied territory from which Israel should withdraw."
CNN's Jerrold Kessel got it nearly right. He reported on July 15 that "Israel accepts that 242 means it must withdraw from those areas, but not necessarily all that territory. The Palestinians say it means all the West Bank and East Jerusalem, right up to what's called the 1967 lines."
It's true the Palestinians "say" they want all the territory, but Kessel fails to make clear that's not what 242 says.
Among the most egregious characterizations was that by veteran Israel-antagonist Holger Jensen, International Editor at Denver's Rocky Mountain News. He wrote on July 11: "The Palestinians want Israel to honor UN Security Council Resolution 242 calling for a return to the 1967 borders. But Israel wants to annex parts of the West Bank and Gaza, offering Arafat only 80% of the occupied lands for an independent state."
The UPI's Mark Kukis and Paul Singer were little better, declaring (July 13): "With a mandate from UN Resolution 242, the Palestinians are pushing for a state in the West Bank, a swath of land bordering Jordan, and Gaza Strip, a sliver of territory on the Mediterranean, with borders drawn along lines before the 1967 war, when Israel seized and later settled land in Palestinian areas."
The drafters of Resolution 242 -- the British Ambassador to the UN in 1967, Lord Caradon, and the American Ambassador, Arthur Goldberg -- specifically did not call for Israel's return to the pre-1967 borders. In an interview in the Beirut Daily Star on June 12, 1974, Caradon stated:
"It would have been wrong to demand that Israel return to its positions of June 4, 1967 because these positions were undesirable and artificial. After all, they were just the places where the soldiers on each side happened to be on the day the fighting stopped in 1948. They were just armistice lines. That's why we didn't demand that the Israelis return to them, and I think we were right not to."
The persistent distortions are not innocuous. That such leading outlets as The New York Times and UPI are unable after 33 years to get UN Resolution 242 right represents - like the consistent mangling of the Oslo Accords - a dangerous dereliction of professional responsibility.
The writer is Executive Director of CAMERA, the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America.
U.N. Security Council Resolution 338, October 22, 1973
In the later stages of the Yom Kippur War -- after Israel repulsed the Syrian attack on the Golan Heights and established a bridgehead on the Egyptian side of the Suez Canal -- international efforts to stop the fighting were intensified. US Secretary of State Kissinger flew to Moscow on October 20, and, together with the Soviet Government, the US proposed a cease-fire resolution in the UN Security Council. The Council met on 21 October at the urgent request of both the US and the USSR, and by 14 votes to none, adopted the following resolution:
The Security Council,
1. Calls upon all parties to present fighting to cease all firing and terminate all military activity immediately, no later than 12 hours after the moment of the adoption of this decision, in the positions after the moment of the adoption of this decision, in the positions they now occupy;
2. Calls upon all parties concerned to start immediately after the cease-fire the implementation of Security Council Resolution 242 (1967) in all of its parts;
3. Decides that, immediately and concurrently with the cease-fire, negotiations start between the parties concerned under appropriate auspices aimed at establishing a just and durable peace in the Middle East.
United Nations resolutions on Israel
Statement by US Ambassador
An open letter to the Palestinians
Mourning the dove of peace
Israel’s peculiar position
It’s those Jews again!