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Resolution 242

RESOLUTION 242

Passed unanimously by the UN Security Council on 22 November 1967, following the 1967 War, this resolution was drafted by the British ambassador, Lord Caradon, after exhaustive negotiation and discussion and was accepted by all belligerent states. It reads: "The Security Council, Expressing its continuing concern with the 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, 1. 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 Israeli armed forces from territories occupied in the recent conflict; (ii) Termination of all claims or states of belligerency and respect for and acknowledgement 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 boundaries free from threats or 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 measures including the establishment of demilitarized 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." Resolution 242 states the basic premise, land for peace, of all subsequent diplomatic proposals for settlement of the Arab-Israeli issue. In order to gain unanimous approval, however, it was artfully ambiguous regarding the extent of the land in question, leading to greatly differing interpretations later. It did not refer to the issue of Palestinian rights, mentioning the Palestinians only in the context of the "refugee problem." Although it was accepted by the belligerent states, it was rejected by the Palestine Liberation Organization, which had not been a party to the discussion and which continued to reject it until 1988.

SEE ALSO Arab-Israel War (1967); Palestine Liberation Organization.

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