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LE DIRECTEUR GENERAL: Ce n'est pas sans regret que je dois informer le Conseil du prochain départ de M. Fortunescu, notre Chef du protocole, que nous connaissons depuis tant d'annëes et dont nous avons tous eu l'occasion d'apprécier l'aimable efficacité, le dévouement et l'inaltérable bonne humeur dans l'accomplissement de ses très délicates fonctions.

M. Fortunescu est,à vrai dire, un cas unique. Il est peut-être le plus ancien fonctionnaire international encore en activité, puisqu'il a dédié quelque 46 ans de sa vie au service de la Communauté internationale. Forestier de formation, c'est en 1933 qu'il entra à l'Institut international d'agriculture, à Rome, pour se transférer ensuite au Centre international de sylviculture. Il rejoignit la FAO en 1947 comme fonctionnaire technique de la Division des forêts, où il occupa différents postes jusqu'en 1959. A cette date, il passa à la Division de l'information du Département des relations publiques et des affaires juridiques. De 1961 à 1964, il fut Assistant coordonnateur de la Campagne mondiale contre la faim. En 1964, il fut transféré au Bureau de liaison et protocole, dont il prit la direction en 1966, il y a treize ans.

Ayant atteint la limite d'âge en 1974, il devait prendre sa retraite à ce moment-là et le Conseil se souviendra de lui avoir rendu hommage en juillet 1974. Toutefois, les qualités et l'expérience exceptionnelles de M. Fortunescu ainsi que son dévouement, m'ont amené à le prier de conserver ses fonctions durant quelques années encore.

Je sais que tous ceux.qui ont eu comme moi, le privilège d'apprécier la courtoisie de M. Fortunescu, ainsi que ses remarquables aptitudes linguistiques et que sa vaste culture littéraire et artistique, comprendront la raison de cette décision.

Malheureusement, il a maintenant pris lui-même la décision de se retirer définitivement et je pense que le Conseil voudra se joindre à moi pour lui exprimer nos très vifs remerciements pour sa longue carrière, tout entière consacrée à l'entente internationale et au développement, et pour lui adresser, ainsi qu'à Mme Fortunescu, nos voeux les plus sincères de bonheur et de prospérité durant cette retraite si bien méritée. Mais je suis sûr qu'il continuera à demeurer très actif durant cette retraite.


CHAIRMAN: Thank you very much, distinguished delegates, ladies and gentlemen. I think this applause speaks more eloquently than hours of words. All the same I will give the floor to the delegate of Malta.

I. MOSKOVITS (Malta): Mr. Chairman, thank you very much for your kind words and for giving me the floor. In the name of the permanent representatives to FAO I wish to thank most kindly the Director-General for his extremely nice words with which he underlined Dr. Fortunescu's merits and also his personal regrets that one of the most faithful officers of the Organization is leaving.

Dr. Fortunescu was with FAO from its very beginnings, first in Washington and later in Rome, when the Organization's Headquarters transferred here. He is one of the most popular officers of the Organization. He knows everybody and he is known by everybody who has to deal with FAO or who has any relations with the Organization.

In his own career, during these last years he occupied the post particularly suited to him and to his excellent and exceptional qualities as Head of Liaison and Protocol of the Organization. In this position he was in charge of liaison with permanent representatives. During this period, in his function he succeeded in making the corps of permanent representatives a real and I daresay a strong unit. I am sure that I am speaking in the names of all the permanent representatives when I say that we like him and are very grateful to him for everything he did to facilitate our tasks, and in this way helped us to know FAO better and to become true friends of the Organization.

It has often been said that the permanent representatives have a dual function: they represent their governments to FAO but they have to also represent the Organization to the countries which they represent.

We like Dr. Fortunescu very much. His friendliness, his frank and open personality, his good humour and his kindness to everybody made him really one of everybody's friends. Like the Organization itself, we will miss him very much. We wish him a peaceful and happy retirement and hope that he will not forget the many years he spent with FAO and his numerous friends among the representatives.

As a token of the gratitude and affection we have for him, we wish to give him a small present to remind him of all of the friends he is leaving in Rome. We asked a noted personality to hand him this present, Miss Mireille Musso, who does not belong either to FAO nor the the permanent representatives but who is appreciated and liked by everybody, and I ask her to hand this small present to Dr. Fortunescu.


CHAIRMAN: Thank you very much, delegate of Malta. I would now like to give the floor to Dr. Fortunescu.

R.C. FORTUNESCU (FAO Staff): Mr. Chairman, thank you for first of all for giving me the opportunity of saying a few words of thanks, and let me start by quoting the young lady who said that she had long ago forgotten how to blush. I do not know what to say. The tributes were very wonderful, they were not all merited, but let me accept them not on my behalf but on behalf of a profession I represent, that of the international civil servant, as one of which, as you heard, I have had a long and if I may say chequered career, which started at the old International Institute of Agriculture to which I came through long family tradition in international institutions and which took me through pleasant, sometimes very exciting periods, such as my stay in Berlin during the "open season" from 1940 to 1945, then to Washington and back again to Rome, and may I say that I have loved not every minute but most of the time.

It was really a career where I felt that it was worthwhile staying and doing. I learned a number of things, among which I would like to say that there are certain requirements for an international civil servant. First of all, he must be very patient. If it does not happen this year, it will happen next year, in five years, in ten years, and in my forty-six years I have seen a great change, a great advance, in the position of the international institutions. Once they were tolerated. They are perhaps not tolerated now, but at least one listens to them, and that is already a very great advance.

Let me add that there is another requirement, and that is faith, faith in the ultimate justification of trying to establish international relationships, of getting to contribute even the smallest bricks to an edifice of international understanding. I hope it will be a great edifice. I was privileged to be there in one of the not earliest but early stages, and I only hope that it will become possible in future years to look back at our time and say this was a time in which the foundations, the basis was laid to something which I think is very worthwhile and in which I had profoundly to believe when sometimes things were getting a bit perhaps not only sticky but also boring and routine, because as someone has once said, all great things are not made only of great moments but also of routine tasks.

And now I realise that I forgotten one of the cardinal requirements of an international civil servant, who should be dedicated but never take himself too seriously.

May I say another word. I did not thank you for this, but I was told that vengeance is something, as the French say, "La vengeance est un plat qui se mange froid", so if you will allow me, I shall have the pleasure of savouring what is in this package, the pleasure of seeing it sometime later. Thank you, and, Mr. Chairman, may I apologise.



10. Preparations for the Twentieth Session of the FAO Conference: (continued)
10. Préparation de la 20ème session de la Conference de la FAO: (suite)
10. Preparativos del 20° período de sesiones de la Conferencia de la FAO: (continuación)

10.1 Arrangements for the Session, and Provisional Agenda for the Conference
10.1 Organisation de la session et ordre du jour provisoire de la Conference
10.1 Organización del período de sesiones y programa provisional de la Conferencia

CHAIRMAN: Now we will resume our agenda with Item 10, Arrangements for the Session and Provisional Agenda for the Conference. The document is CL 75/11. This does not required any intervention, and normally it is a very simple subject, because the Secretariat, the Director-General and his colleagues have followed all the routines which have been followed for many years, but I have a request from two delegations to spead already; first is the delegate of Saudi Arabia and the second is the delegate of Egypt.

Now, I am sure that the delegates must have guessed what these two Distinguished Delegates want the floor for, because it is an open secret that in one of our regions, which is the Middle East Region, there are some tensions and disagreements over certain things, which seem to have nothing to do with FAO but which seem to spill over into debates all over the place, and perhaps I would like to appeal to the delegations, the two Delegates particularly and to all members of Council, to refrain from bringing long debates into this matter, for the simple reason that Council duty is to make the necessary arrangements and provisional agenda for the Conference, not to discuss the agenda as such and not to take decisions on matters which do not relate to Council responsibilities.

It is therefore necessary for us to bear this in mind, and also to bear in mind that this matter seems to be primarily one for the Middle East region which they should ideally solve themselves within. the countries concerned. However, if it has to go up to the Conference, well then it will have to go to the Conference in whatever form the parties want.

A. Y. BUKHARI (Saudi Arabia) (interpretation from Arabic): I am grateful to you for having given me the floor as Chairman of the Near East group of countries and also as representative of my own country in this Organization. Allow me, Sir, to take the floor on behalf of the vast majority of members of this same group.

We always try to create an atmosphere of serious cooperation as regards the implementation of the objectives and principles on the basis of which the regional office of the Near East was set up, along with regional offices which depend on our Organization, the FAO. Those who are watching the work and activities of this group in all fields, and especially in technical cooperation projects between the countries of the region - and those who are taking note of this - I am sure, will fully understand the developments and progress achieved in the interests of the people of our region, and we are very proud of this.

We would like to assure this august council of the fact that we shall continue to do our utmost to create fruitful technical cooperation within this region, and we wish to maintain this efficiency which is characteristic of the work of our regional office in the international framework.

When you tackle this question of the preparation or arrangements for the Twentieth Session of the Conference, under this heading we should like to add a further item to the agenda, which is "Transfer of the Regional Office of FAO for the Near East from its present location". Furthermore, we are sure that the Director-General of our Organization will prepare a far-reaching and complete study of this matter. There is no denying that we can be sure he will pay close attention to this and he will then introduce this study during the Conference so that the Conference can adopt the various decisions as it deems fit.

M. SAMIR AHMED (Egypt): First of all, I would like very much to thank you, Mr. Chairman, for giving me the floor, and I would like at the very outset to assure you that out of deference to your prestigious chair and to your great country my delegation would have, at any cost and in any event, carried out its mission and its task with the due civility, collectiveness and in the civilized manner that behoves such an Organization, but I would like also to thank you because you gave me a very good starting point with which to begin my case.

When you were introducing the two speakers, my colleague for Saudi Arabia and myself, you said the subject to be discussed had nothing to do with FAO, and you rightly said so. This is my whole case, and I am quoting the Chairman, no less, in proof of what I am going to say. Therefore I would like very much for you, Mr. Chairman, and the delegates, to bear with me and give me a little time because what I am going to discuss is not only a very important matter to my Government but also for all of you. It is not a regional matter. It transcends regionism, and it concerns each and every one of you, because what is going to happen to the regional office in the Near East, in Cairo, might very well happen to the other regional offices in Latin America, Asia or Africa. So it is a matter of concern, and should be given due discussion and consultation. I would like to ask you to give me your ears with an open mind. Do not take it for granted that this item does necessarily belong to this Council group, and does necessarily have to be recommended by this Council, in order to go to the Conference. No. What I am going to say is to convince you first, that it is not necessary that it should be so, that there are other measures the delegate of Saudi Arabia could take - he could take his item directly to the Conference without having to come to you first.

My delegation would like to register its opposition and objection to the procedure suggested by the delegate of Saudi Arabia. This representative is requesting the Council to approve his delegation's desire to include an item on the next Conference's provisional agenda which in turn requests the Conference to study the advisability of the transfer of the Organization's Near East regional office from its present seat which is from Cairo, Egypt.

Now I suppose that this request is made on the strength of Rule II, paragraph 2 (b) of the General Rules which says: "The provisional agenda for a regular session shall include items approved by the Council after consultation with the Director-General•"

Let me ask the Council, then, how is this requirement that the Council approves after consultation with the Director-General being fulfilled? First, what is the Council to approve? What are you being asked to approve in the first place?

All that you are being asked by the delegate of Saudi Arabia is to put your stamp of approval - without study or appraisal - on transmitting to the Conference as an item on its agenda a request for the transfer of the Near East Regional Office from Cairo.

Rule XXIV of the General Rules specifies that the Council shall take decisions "on matters that need not be submitted to the Conference ..." Since the delegate himself specifically desires to include this item on the Conference' s agenda, he is in fact asking you just to transfer the item to the Conference as if the Council were just a mail box.

Never mind what you might think about the substance, the importance, the dangers or the pitfalls -never mind all that. You just approve the inclusion on the Conference's agenda, no matter what you may think of the substance of the issue. I submit that this is not just or fair to the Council or my delegation. You can all see distinctly through the apparently innocuous allusions constituting the requested item.

It is much too important to be rubber-stamped by the Council and yet purport to carry its official seal of approval, no study having been done and no appraisal having taken place.

This is a heavy responsibility. Let me ask the Council why it does not leave this responsibility to the Conference itself, in accordance with Rule II, paragraph 5, and Rule II paragraph 7 of the General Rules which would still make it possible for any delegate or country to include an item on the Conference's agenda without engaging the Council's responsibility or carrying its stamp of approval?

Rule II, paragraph 5 says "Any member.... may, not less than thirty days before the date fixed for the opening of a session, request the Director-General to include specific items on the agenda (of the Conference). These items shall be placed on a supplementary list which shall be despatched to member nations not less than twenty days before the date fixed for the opening of the session, and shall be presented to the General Committee for recommendation to the Conference."

Rule II paragraph 7 along the same lines makes it possible for any delegate to include any item on the agenda in the same way, but it asks the Director-General to present a detailed and studied comment to the Conference. So much the better.

I sitbmit there is no real purpose being served by bringing this item to the Council, at least no objective, technical or other purpose having to do with the functions and nature of this Organization. There is another more direct way for the sponsors of the item to take it to the Conference.

But on the other hand, there are pitfalls and dangers if this Council allows itself to be drawn into this obviously highly politicali zed item without an objective study, and without the required technical consultations called for and the required objective discussion this should lead to.

On this basis alone the Council is fully justified in asking the sponsor of the item to resort to Rule II paragraph 5 and Rule II paragraph 7.

I submit it is a much safer course and a more dignified and justified approach to leave this request entirely to the decision of the Conference, in accordance with Rule II paragraph 5 and Rule II paragraph 7, to include it or not, in its agenda on its merit. As you are well aware, Sir, the item under consideration deals with the Organization's relationship with a State based on an agreement signed by this Organization and a Member State.

This is another important thing to bear in mind. You are fully aware, Sir, that according to the Organization's Constitution and General Rules. the Council is not required, it is not obliged, to deal with this request, since it is the Conference and not the Council which is primarily responsible, and I underline 'primarily'. It is the Conference and not the Council which is primarily responsible for agreements, and especially agreements about regional offices. The item under discussion, without going into too much detail, deals with one of those agreements. It purports to cancel it or discontinue it because obviously you can not transfer the Regional Office from its present seat without such a step being taken* Let me give a few examples from the Constitution to clarify my point.

Articles 14 and 15 of the Constitution are devoted entirely to conventions and agreements between the Organization and Member States or international organizations. They make it very clear that it is the Conference of FAO which has the privilege and the authority of agreement and convention-making on behalf of this Organization. Where the Council is so empowered, it is specifically restricted by the provision that it is to be "under rules to be adopted by the Conference" and provided that the Council action should be taken by two-thirds of the membership of the Council concurring.

Now, Article X of our Constitution about regional liaison offices says: "There shall be such regional offices and sub-regional offices as the Director-General, with the approval of the Conference, may decide." Not a word about the Council, Sir.

It is therefore obvious that on matters pertaining to the Conference ' s jurisdiction, such as agreements on regional offices, where a Conference decision is needed. Rule 24 of the General Ruler assumes a special relevance in my appeal to the Council to let the Conference alone handle this matter. Rule 24, as I have said, enjoins the Council to "make decisions on matters that need to be submitted to the Conference." You are aware, of course, that the delegate of Saudi Arabia has reouested its inclusion on the provisional agenda of the Conference.

A study of the Constitution and General Rules about the role and function of the Conference and the Council, besides the importance of the item under review - an importance which transcends its apparent innocuousness - should convince the Council that its wisest course of action should be to ask the sponsors of the item in question to take their item directly to the Conference, in accordance with Rules 2.5 and 2.7.

Let me adduce further reasons and justifications for this suggested line of action. For the Council to approve this item according to Rule 2.2 (b), that is, endorse it and send it to the Conference carrying the Council' s seal of approval, the Council should have had before it, (a) proper consultation with the Director-General, as specified in the above Rule, and preferably a detailed technical study; (b) proper discussion of the merits of this case; and (c), a convincing case presented by the sponsors, based on objective and technical reasons which should be in line with the functions and objectives of our Organization and which should prove that the item, if carried to its logical conclusion, should enhance the efficiency of this Organization.

Nothing of that sort has happened. We all know the real reasons behind the sponsor's apparently innocent request. As you yourself, Sir, have said, they have nothing to do with food security or agricultural prosperity. My delegation is not going to refute or expose those real motivations at this stage, in deference to you, Sir, but reserves the right to do so at the proper time. Suffice it now to say that their reasons for raising this item are, to say the least, and to put it very mildly, of a one-sided political nature. They have nothing to do with the standards and criteria which guided and still guide the Director-General and this Organization in selecting seats for regional offices.

Why should the Council therefore silently put its seal of approval on such a request and send it on to the Conference? Why not leave it to the Conference to make its own political decision on an obviously political item?

For the Council to accept the sponsor's wishes, for the Council to impart its approval or endorsement to this item, will be tantamount to accepting to mix regional politics of a highly suspect and dubious nature with the serious business of food security and agricultural prosperity. I do not believe that the Council should want to do that, Sir. Better leave it to the political organ of this Organization to handle it in its own way.

Obviously, to accept the argument that each time there arises a quarrel or a dispute between certain states in a region, and the State which hosts the seat of the regional office, these States try to get the FAO to acceed to their request to transfer that seat, to accept this argument is to create a dangerous precedent in international organizations. Never before has a regional seat of any organization in the United Nations System been transferred, at least for political reasons, or for any other reasons as far as I know. To accept this trend is to open the flood gates to a new brand of intellectual imposition, of political dictate over the serious business of this Organization and similar ones.

Again, I say, this is not a regional matter that should interest Near East Member States alone; it is an issue which might create world-wide repercussions and precedents. It is therefore a matter of principle.

How many members of this Council in Africa, Asia or Latin America, may come to confront a similar future threat when they happen to have their political differences with some of their neighbours who may try to penalize them or intimidate them by seeking to transfer regional offices from their capitals? Where is this going to take us? Do we not all have our passing short-lived political misunderstandings in all areas of the world? Are we to transfer regional offices around according to passing whims and caprices and to shifting alliances or shifting sands? What happens when relations, after six months or a year, have reverted to normal? Do we put the regional offices back to the place that had originally been chosen according to criteria of efficiency and of objectivity?

The FAO Near East Regional Office in Cairo has been there for the past thirty years. Egypt has been a good host, a good member of FAO. It has offered and still does and will continue to offer, all its technical, administrative and political facilities to FAO, its Regional Office and to all Members of FAO at large.

CHAIRMAN: Delegate of Egypt, can you please restrict yourself to the question of the place in the agenda only, without now going into details on how long it is there and what it is doing, etc.?

M. SAMIR AHMED (Egypt) : With all due respect, I was trying to convince the delegates of the advisability of not placing this item on the agenda, for the reasons I was adducing. At any event, if you will bear with me for the next four or five minutes, I will be done. So please bear with me only four or five minutes more, because as I have said, this is a very important subject to my Government and I think even to everyone round this Council table. Thank you, Sir; I will carry on.

Above all, Mr. Chairman, and fellow members of the Council, I beseech the Council to be fair to itself by not rushing head-on to endorse or approve the inclusion of this item on the next Conference agenda because this may turn out to be not the intention of the Conference. Then, be fair to Egypt also, a founding member which has been a good host to the Regional Office for the last thirty years, which is ready and willing to put all its resources at the service of FAO and its Regional Office, as well as all the Member States which make up its membership, political differences notwithstanding. So, I do not penalize Egypt by putting the stamp of approval 'sans connaissance de cause' on this item. You can still be fair to the sponsors and you still would not deprive them of the chance to take their item to the Conference where they themselves want it to be discussed in the first place, by letting them make use of Articles 2.5 or 2.7 of the General Rules.

In the light of the foregoing, I formally present to the Council my delegation's formal proposal that the Council adopt the following decision, which I am going to read out, with your permission, Sir; and would you please instruct the Secretariat to come out and pick up copies of this same draft that I am going to read and which comes in English, French, Arabic and Spanish, for the purpose of facilitating the task of this Council. The draft resolution I have in mind reads as follows:

"The Council, having taken note of the request by certain delegations that the Council approve the inclusion on the Provisional Agenda of the Twentieth Session of the FAO Conference of an item relative to the transfer of the FAO Near East Regional Office to another capital, decides that no Council action is required at this juncture."

I want to avoid the Council losing further precious time; I want to avoid undue lengthy rebuttals and recriminations. You have listened to the delegate of Saudi Arabia's request to include the item on the Provisional Agenda of the Conference. You have heard my case, and you have been seized of my official proposal. To save the Council further loss of time and wrangling, I now also, with your permission, Sir, move officially the closure of the debate on the request of the Saudi Arabian delegate; under Article 23 of our General Rules, after the procedure has been carried through, I ask you, Mr. Chairman, respectfully and formally, to submit my proposal to the voting of the Council.

CHAIRMAN: I would like to correct what I think is a misunderstanding. You kept on saying that I said from the Chair the matter was not for the Council. What I said was that this matter has come on from something that took place outside FAO, not with our involvement but it is spilling over into all organizations and therefore I think this should be put right; I am not saying this matter has nothing to do with FAO. I hope that is clear.

M. SAMIR AHMED (Egypt): With all due respect, Mr. Chairman, I took down your words at the very beginning and they were "nothing to do with FAO". So, if I am mistaken - if it is not your intention to have said so - I am willing to let go and not insist on this point. But nevertheless, I am very thankful to you, Sir.

CHAIRMAN: I am sorry, I did say... I said what has happened is nothing to do with that but it is spilling over to everybody, but what we are concerned with now is the proposal by Saudi Arabia that we should include an item on the agenda for the Conference. Now the delegate of Egypt in his intervention did not contest the fact that the Conference can discuss this matter and so far as I can see, and in order to limit the discussions, we have two alternatives. Egypt is not in agreement with the proposals by Saudi Arabia. Now, Saudi Arabia is speaking on behalf of certain countries of the Region and they have the right to put their points to Council on the agenda. There are two ways or three ways of doing this and it would appear to me that Saudi Arabia have taken one way of doing it, which is in our rules, and Egypt now is saying that Saudi Arabia should do it in another way, that it should not bring this matter to Council but it should go straight to the Conference. Now, I from the Chair cannot tell Saudi Arabia what to do, or Egypt what to do, or any Member of the Council what to do. It is a matter on which those which propose and those who oppose will either come to an agreement or a consensus will be taken in Council on those proposals. There is no question of gagging a debate because every member has the right to make their proposals and for the other Members to make their counter proposals and therefore if Council would agree we will boil down the problem to either Saudi Arabia should put it now or they will agree to accept the Egyptian proposal that they should go straight to the Conference. Now if Saudi Arabia say they do not agree then of course there is going to be some discussion and therefore I would like to give the floor to Saudi Arabia.

A.Y. BUKHARI (Saudi Arabia) (interpretation from Arabic): When I took the floor at the beginning of my statement, I said that I was speaking on behalf of the large majority of the countries of the Near East Group. I am not speaking only on behalf of my country. I said that I was also speaking on behalf of my country which belongs to the Region and to this Group so after having listened to this political statement that has been made I think it is necessary for us to take account of the fact that there are several countries of the Near East Group represented in the Council and perhaps it would be wise to listen to the views of these countries in the Council so that the other Members of the Council can be clear about this.

Now with regard to our proposal concerning the transfer of the Regional Office, we have not asked for anything. we have only asked for this item to be placed on the agenda of the Conference. This is quite a normal request that we have a right to. We can ask for such a thing. We have not asked for this item to be discussed now. We know that the Council cannot take a decision on this matter, that is the transferror the non-transfer of the Regional Office.

We have asked in a very clear manner that the question concerning the transfer of the Regional Office should be placed on the agenda on the coming General Conference. The General Conference of course will take the decision. Therefore I would like to stress the view which we have already expressed. This item should be placed on the agenda and I think we should listen to the other Members of the Council belonging to the Near East Group so that everybody can be very clear about this matter.


M. SAMIR AHMED (Egypt): A point of order. Under the General Rules of our Organization I formally move under Article 23 of our rules the closure of our debate on this request and if I may read out to the Council for its opinion it reads like this: "A delegate or representative may, at any time, move the closure of the debate on the item under discussion, whether or not any other delegate or representative has signified his wish to speak. Permission to speak on the closure of the debate shall be accorded only to two speakers opposing the closure, after which the motion shall be immediately put to the vote. If the Conference or the Council is in favour of the closure, the Chairman shall declare the closure of the debate. The Chairman may limit the time allowed to speakers under this paragraph."

With all due respect I have made a formal motion under Article 23 and I think it should be taken into account.

CHAIRMAN: Thank you delegate of Egypt. You are being very formal. I was once a member of this Council and if I were a member still I would have said that for any delegate to stop discussion of an issue when other people may wish to take the floor is probably preventing them from exercising their human rights. Now if it is the feeling of Council that we should stop the debate in accordance with that protest that is made, then of course we are governed by our own rules and regulations. Is it the wish of Council that we should stop the debate on this matter?

L.C.J. MARTIN (United Kingdom): I am not quite sure how many other members of Council are in the same position as I am, but certainly at the moment I am more than a little confused because I think there is probably not a single regulation that has not been quoted on this. I do not wish to be formal, I do not wish to ask you to rule strictly by the Constitution. I do suggest it might be a good idea to break for lunch.

CHAIRMAN: Thank you very much. I think your suggestion is a much better suggestion than either that of Egyot or Saudi Arabja! Iraq has asked for the floor.

M. HAMDOON (Iraq) (Interpretation from Arabic): It was not my intention to take the floor on this item, despite its importance, had thero not been an intervention from the delegate of Egypt. I did not think that the delegate of Saudi Arabia in his request would have got such a reaction in the case of the representative of Epypt. This question is one which the Council has to decide on. It is a very regional matter, it is purely a regional matter, it affects the countries of the Region. That is why these countries are unanimous the Arab nations would boycot.


CHAIRMAN: Point of order and I now close the meeting for lunch.

The meeting rose at 12.25 hours
La séance est levée à 12 h 25
Se levanta la sesión a las 12.23 horas

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