INTERNATIONAL TERRORISM IN THE UNITED NATIONS DEBATES

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INTERNATIONAL TERRORISM IN THE UNITED NATIONS DEBATES

in The Italian Yearbook of International Law Online

References

1 U.N. Doc. A/8791 (September 8, 1972). With regard to the debate on international terrorism at the United Nations see: V. ABEr.�nN HONRUBIAL, " El terrorismo internacional ", R. Esp. D.I., 28 (1975), pp. 33-56; W. DE PAW and E. Suy, " La question du terrorisme devant la XXVII Asscmblée des Nations Unies ", Reflexions sur la definition et la repression du terrorisme, Bruxelles, Editions de l'Universit6 de Bruxelles, 1974, pp. 175-196; H. A. JACK, "Terrorism: Another UN Failure', America, October 20, 1973, vol. i2q, No. 12, pp. 282-285; O. LEICHTER, " Die Vereinten Nationen und der Internationale Terrorismus ", Vereinte Nationen, Februar 1973, pp. 8-13; SEYMOUR M. FINGER, " International Terrorism and the United Nations ", International Terrorism, National, Regional, and Global Perspectives, Edited by Y. Alexander, New York, Praeger, 1976, pp. 323-348.

2 The General Committee of the General Assembly is composed of 25 members states and consists of the president of the General Assembly, the 17 vice-presidents and the chair- men of its seven principal committees. At the time the following states were members: Poland (president), Belgium, Canada, Colombia, Cyprus, France, Iceland, Haiti, Japan, New Zealand, Paraguay, Peru, Rwanda, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, United States of America, Uruguay. China, Ethiopia, Guinea, Libya, Mauritania, Mauritius and Syria, Czechoslovakia and U.R.S.S. 3 U.N. Doc. 3/879'/Add. i (September 20, 1972) at p. 2. 4 Those voting for inclusion were: Belgium, Canada, Colombia, Cyprus, France, Ice- land, Haiti, Japan, New Zealand, Paraguay, Peru, Rwanda, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, United States of America, Uruguay. Against inclusion were: China, Ethiopia, Guinea, Libya, Mauritania, Mauritius and Syria, with Czechoslovakia and U.S.S.R. abstaining. 5 U.N. Doc. A/88oo/Rev. i (September 22, 1972). 6 U.N. Doc. Air. 672 (September 23, 1972). 7 U.N. Doc. A/L.673 (September 23, 1972). We can see tha the expression " acts of violence " which the Jamaican amendment had removed from the Secretary-General's original title appears again in the second part of the 5na1 title, as it was included in Saudi Arabia's amendment. The contradiction can probably be explained because the second amendment, as Saudi Arabia's representative said, " applies whether or not the Jamaican amendment is adopted " (U.N. Doc. A/PV. zo37

September 23, 1972, p. 61). In other words, it was referring to the title's original words, and not to the Jamaican amendment. 8 U.N. Doc. A/C. 6/413 (September 23, 1972). 9 U.N. Doc. Aloe. 6/414 (September 28, 1972). 10 U.N. Doc. Aloe. 6/418 (November 2, 1972). 11 U.N. Doc. A/C. 6/SR. 1355-1390 (November 9 - December 11, 1972). 12 There were actually for draft resolutions: in fact, the representative of Lesotho presented a text (U.N. Doc. A/C.6/L.896, December 9, 1972) in the form of amendments to the draft resolution of the nonaligned states which, however, amended it so much that it could be considered a new draft. It tried to combine the nonaligned states' draft with the United States one. 13 U.N. Doc. A/C. 6/L 851 (September 25, 1972). 14 urn. Doc. A/C. 6/L. 879/Rev. i (December 8, 1972). Austria, Australia, Belgium, Canada, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras, Iran, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, New Zealand, Nicaragua and United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland: revised draft resolution. ls U.N. Doc. A/C. 6/L. 88o/Rev. i (December 8, 1972). Afghanistan, Algeria, Cameroon, Chad, Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Guinea, Guyana, India, Kenya, Madagascar, Mauritania, Mali, Sudan, Yugoslavia and Zambia: revised draft resolution.

16U.N. Doc. A/C. 6/L. 879/Rev. i, cit., paragraphs 4 and 7. U.N. Doc. A/C. 6/L.88o/ Rev. i, cit., paragraphs 5 and 10. 17 U.N. Doc. A/C. 6/L. 879/Rev. i, cit. 18 The proposal to request the International Law Commission to draft a convention on measures to prevent international terrorism was based on the fact that the ILC, during its XXIV session (May 2 - July 7, 1972) had prepared the " Draft articles on the prevention and punishment of crimes against diplomatic agents and other internationally protected per- sons " (U.N. Doc. Suppl. No. 10, A/87ro/R�v. 1, 1973). 19 U.N. Doc. A/C. 6/L. 88o/Rev. i, cit.

20 U.N. Doc. A/C.6/SR. 1390 (December m, 1972). 21 The two amendments reduced the members of the Ad Hoc Committee, from 40 to 35 and changed the dead line for presenting the written observations of the States to April 10, instead of June 1, 1973 (U.N. Doc. A/L.696, December 18, 1972). 22 Afghanistan, Algeria, Cameroon, Cha,], Guinea, Guyana, India, Kenya, Madagascar, Mauritania, Mali Sudan Yugoslavia and Zambia. z3 U.N. Doc. A/RES/3034 (XXVII), January m, 1973. 24 U.N. Doc. A/AC.161/1 (May 16, 1973). 25 U.N. Doc. A/AC.160/1, cit. and A/AC.i6o/i/Add.i (June 12, 1973). 26 U.N. Doc. A/AC.160/2 (June 22, 1973). 27 U.N. Doc. A/AC.16o/i/Add.2-5 (July 9-31, 1973). 28 U.N. Doc. A/8993 (April 24, 1973). 29 U.N. Doc. A/RES/3034 (XXVII), cit., paragraph 10.

3° U.N. Doc. Suppl. No. 28, A/9028 (1973). 31 U.N. Doc. Suppl. No. 28, A/9028, cit., at p. 21-34. 3z U.N. Doc. A/9410 (December 10, 1973). 33 Decision of the General Assembly held at its z3i9th plenary meeting on December 14, 1974 on the recommendation of the Sixth Committee. 3a Decision of the General Assembly held at its z44ist plenary meeting on December 15, 1975 on the recommendation of the Sixth Committee. 35 U.N. Doc. A/AC.160/1 and A/AC.i6o/r/Add.1-3, cit.

36 U.N. Doc. A/BUR/SR.202 (September 22, 1972). 3� U.N. Doc. A/BUR/SR.202, cit., at p. 27, 30, 33. 38 U.N. Doc. A/BUR/SR.202, cit., at p. 29. 39 U.N. Doc. A/BUR/SR.202, cit., at p. 30. 40 U.N. Doc. A/BUR/SR.202, cit., at p. 27. 41 U.N. Doc. A/BUR/SR.202, cit., at p. 30-31. 42 U.N. Doc. A/BUR/SR.202, cit" at 31 ff. The representative of Soviet Union in his statement complained of the Zionist terrorist acts against Soviet citizens: " It could not be overlooked that Zionist extremist organizations hostile to the Soviet Union and containing Fascist elements had repeatedly had recourse to acts of terror against Soviet citizens and citizens of other countries in the United States and were at present threatening to broaden such activities ". 43 U.N. Doc. A/BUR/SR.202, cit., at p. 32. 44 U.N. Doc. A/PV.2037, cit., at p. 106-110.

45 Other than Canada, Haiti, Uruguay, United States, URSS, Sudan, Saudi Arabia that had already addressed the General Committee, Afghanistan, Liberia, Jamaica, Sweden, Yugoslavia, Israel, Guyana, Jordan, Brazil, India, South Africa (that had voted in favour of the Secretary General's request), Yemen, Cuba, Kuwait, Egypt (that had voted against) and Pakistan (that had abstained) also spoke. 46 U.N. Doc. A/PV.2037, cit., at p. 121. 47 U.N. Doc. A/PV.2037, cit., at p. 138-141.

� The adjournement to the following session evidently seemed necessary to have as much time as possible for a close examination of the causes of terrorism and to avoid taking hasty measures for the repression and prevention of it. 99 U.N. Doc. A/C.6/L.88o/Rev.i, cit. 50 U.N. Doc. A/RES/3034, cit.: " 3. (The General Assembly) reaffirms the inalienable right to self- determination and independence of all peoples under colonial and racist regimes and other forms of alien domination and upholds the legitimacy of their struggle, in particular the struggle of national liberation movements, in accordance with the purposes and principles of the Charter and the relevant resolutions of the organs of the United Nations; 4. Condemns the continuation of repressive and terrorist acts by colonial racist and alien regimes in denying peoples their legitimate right to self-determination and independence and other human rights and fundamental freedoms " 51 U.N. Doc. A/C.6/L.879/Rev.i, cit. 52 U.N. Doc. A/C.6/SR.I390, cit., at p. 507. s3 U.N. Doc. A/C.6/L.88o/Rev.i, cit.

54 U.N. Doc. A;C.G/SR.r39o, cit., at p. 505. 55 U.N. Doc. A/PV.zm4, (December 18, 1972). %6 U.N. Doc. A/AC.;6o/2, cit.

57 The following states signed the Convention: Albania, Argentina, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cuba, Egypt, Ecuador, Spain, Estonia, France, Greece, Haiti, India, Monaco, Norway, Holland, Peru, Dominican Rep., Romania, Czechoslovakia, Turkey, URSS, Venezuela and Yugoslavia. India ratified it on January 1, 1941. Apart from the outbreak of World War II, the reluctance of states to ratify the convention was perhaps due to the extent of the definition of terrorism, which resulted from the combination of Articles i and 2. 58 U.N. Doc. A/C.6/SR.1355, cit.: " (The Swedish delegation) felt that the time had not yet to come to take a decision on the timeliness and usefulness of a convention governing all aspects of international terrorism. In its view, it would be best to adopt the first of the above-mentioned solutions, namely, to develop existing international co-operation with regard to terrorism and to extend it to other specific aspects of the problem. Thus, one might en- visage the establishment of international rules for certain categories of particularly serious offences, such as the taking of hostages in order to obtain concessions from a Government or other national or international institution and the mailing of letters or parcels contain- ing explosive ". 59 In this sense see, for instance: J. F. PREVOST, " Les aspects nouveaux du terrorisme international ", Annuaire Prançais (1973), 19, p. 599; T. M. FRANCK and B. B. LOCKWOOD, Jr., " Preliminary thought towards an international convention on terrorism ", A.J.I.L. ( i974), p. 89; A. F. PANZERA " La Convenzione sulla prevenzione e la repressione di reati contro persone che godono di protezione internazionale ", Rivista (1975), 58, p. 94.

601. Convention on Offenses and Certain Other Acts Committed on Board Aircraft, Sept. 14, 1963, ICAO Doc. No. 8364 (1963). See 2 I.L.M. (1963), p. 1042; 58 A.J.I.L. (1964), pp. 566-573> U.N.T.S. (1969), p. 10106. 2. Convention for the Suppression of Unlawful Seizure of Aircraft, Dec. 16, 1970, ICAO Doc. No. 8920 (1970). See 10 I.L.M. (1971), pp. 133-136. 3. Convention for the Suppression of Unlawful Acts Against the Safety of Civil Avia- tion, Sept. 23, 1971, ICAO Doc. No. 8966 (1971). See 10 I.L.M. (1971), pp. 1151-1156. See the list of ratifications in: RDIPP 1975, pp. 194-200. bt U.N. Doc. A/RES/3166 (XXVIII), December 14, 1973. 62 For the text of the Council Resolution of June 19, 1972, see ICAO Doc. No. 9028- C/ioo8, Action of the Council, 76th Sess., at 40-41; see 11 I.L.M. (1972), pp. 897-98. sa Report of the Special Subcommittee on the Council Resolution of June 19, 1972, ICAO Doc. No. 905o-LC/i6g-2 (1973). 64 The other six members were Australia, Italy, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua and the United Kingdom. See LC/Working Draft No. 820. ICAO Doc. 9o5o-LC/r69-z, at p. 265 (1973). 65 LC/Working Draft No. 825, ICAO Doc. 905o-LC/i6g-2, at p. 289 (1973). 66 LC/Working Draft No. 831, ICAO Doc. 905o-LC/i6g-2, at p. 313 (1973).

67 Convention on International Civil Aviation, 1948, 61 Stat. 1180, TIAS No. 1591, r5 UNTS 29G. 68 LC/Working Draft No. 821, ICAO Doc. 9030-�/169-2, at p. 274 (1973). 69 LC/Working Draft No. 829, ICAO Doc. 9ogo-LC/r69-z, at p. 311 (1973). 70 CL/Working Draft No. 826, ICAO Doc. 9050-LC/169-2, at p. 300 (1973). 71 Actually the ICAO Twentieth (Extraordinary) Assembly considered not only the original Swiss-U.K. and French drafts, but also a combined French-Swiss-U.K. text. 72 Just before the opening of the Conference, Belgium proposed a draft Convention on the security of international civil aviation (CAS Doc. No. 12), and during the Con- ference the delegation of Greece presented a Draft Supplementary Protocol to the Montreal Convention ((CAS Doc. No. 16). 73 The Assembly was attended by delegates from 101 ICAO Contracting states, as well as observers from two non-Contracting states and eight international organizations, including the United Nations. The International Conference on Air Law, held on the premises of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) was attended as well by delegates from 101 states (5 of which were non-Contracting) and observers from eight international organizations, among them the United Nations. The most important documents are published by the Revue français de droit aerien (1974), pp. 79-91. 74 Final Act of the International Conference on Air Law, 28 ICAO Bull. 36-38 (1973). 75 Art. 94 (a) of the Chicago Convention. 76 The imposition of sanctions was requested particularly by the Swiss-United Kingdom

proposal which provided, through an amendment to Article 87 of the Chicago Convention, that states which did not extradite or prosecute the alleged offender or facilitate the journey of passengers, crew, cargo and aircraft would, under appropriate circumstances, be subject to the penalty of suspension of air services to and from them. See Z. J. GERTLER, " Amendments to the Chicago Convention: Jessons from proposals that failed", Journal of Air Law and Commerce, v. 40 (1974), pp. 225-258; G. F. FITZGERALD, "Recent proposals for concerted action against states in respect of unlawful interference with international civil aviation ", Journal of Air Law and Commerce, v. 40 (1974), pp. 161-224; A. A. ABRAMOVSKY, " Multilateral Conventions for the Suppression of Unlawful Seizure and Interference with Aircraft. Part III: The Legality and Political Feasibility of a Multilateral Air Security Enforcement Convention ", Col. J. Trans. Law, v. 14 (1975), pp. 451-484; M. TRAJKOVIC, " Echec de la Conference de Rome sur la piraterie aerienne ", Revue de politique inter- nationale, November 11, 1974, No. 567, pp. 25-28. 77 The first one, following two previous resolutions of a condemnatory nature, adopted by the Security Council of the United Nations on August 15, 1973 (12 I.L.M. (1973), pp. 1280-1281) and by the ICAO Council on August 20, 1973 (12 LL.M. (1973), pp. 1181- 1182), strongly condemned Israel for violating Lebanon's sovereignty and for the forcible diversion and seizure of a Lebanese civil aircraft, and for violating the Chicago Convention ,Resolution A20-I, in ICAO New Release, August 30, 1973; 28 ICAO Bull. 36-38 (1973). The second, in referring to acts of unlawful interference with civil aviation, condemned all such acts and any failure by a Contracting state to fulfil its obligation to return an aircraft which is being illegally detained or to extradite or to submit to the prosecuting authorities the case of any person accused of an act or unlawful interference with civil aviation (Resolution A20-2).

�$ However, initially the discussion also touched on other aspects of the problem which were not necessarily of secondary importance, like the meaning of the term " international " See for instance the statements of the representatives of Sweden (U.N. Doc. A/C.6/SR.1355, cit.), Canada (U.N. Doc. A/C.6/SR.I362, cit.) and Belgium (U.N. Doc. A/C.6/SR.1365, cit.). 79 U.N. Doc. A/8791, cit., at p. 2. 80 U.N. Doc. A/879i/Add.i, cit., at p. 2: " In proposing this item I had in mind the increasing incidence of acts of violence directed at national leaders, diplomatic envoys, international passengers and other innocent civilians ".

81 U.N. Doc. A/C.6/SR.1367, cit. 82 One should not, however forget that also in the context of the Tokyo, The Hague and Montreal Conventions and in that of the " Convention on the prevention and punish- ment of crimes against diplomatic agents and other internationally protected persons " the issue of self-determination has been raised, " but the economics of air travel and the special importance of diplomacy have apparently sufficient cause to place that issue in its proper perspective " (A. W. RomNE, " The contemporary international legal attack on terrorism ", Israel Yearbook on humain rights, v. 3 (1973), p. 27). 83 U.N. Doc. /C.6/L.851, cit. 84 U.N. Doc. A/C.6/L.879/Rev.i, cit. 85 U.N. Doc. A/C.6/L.88o/Rev.i, cit. 86 U.N. Doc. Suppl. No. 28 (A/9028), cit., at pp. 21, 22, 28. 87 U.N. Doc. Suppl. No. 28 (A/9028), cit., at pp. 28-33. For an analysis of the U.S. draft convention see B. B.: " Terrorism: the proposed United States draft convention, Georgia journal of International and Comparative Law, 3 (1973), pp. 430-447. 88 In the beginning, when the item on international terrorism was included in the provisional agenda of the twenty-seventh session of the General Assembly, the United States

seemed full of initiative and rather secure. It is sufficient to consider that already on September 25, 1972 they had presented, perhaps hurriedly, two draft proposals (U.N. Doc. A/C.6/L.850, and U.N. Doc. A/C.6/L.85I, cit.). Some factors, lastly certainly not the terrorist bombing in Vietnam, which to many states seemed a kind of international terrorism equally to be condemned, weakened their stands later on. 89 See art. i of the United States draft convention. 90 Algeria, Congo, Democratic Yemen, Guinea, India, Mauritania, Nigeria, Syrian Arab Republic, Tunisia, United Republic of Tanzania, Yemen, Yugoslavia, Zaire and Zambia. 91 U.N. Doc. Suppl. No. 28 (A/9028), cit., at p. 21. 92 U.N. Doc. Suppl. No. 28 (A/9028), :it. at pp. 22-23, 33-34.

93 This account is based on the newspaper coverages of The New York Times and Le Monde, keeping in mind that are still quite controversial. 94 U.N. Doc. S/Agenda/I939: Complaint by the Prime Minister of Mauritius, Current Chairman of the Organization of African Unity, of the " act of aggression " by Israel against the republic of Uganda. The Security Council meeting was requested by the Prime Minister of Mauritius, Chair- man of the Organization of African Unity, with a telegram dated July 6, 1976 (U.N. Doc. S/12126, July 6, 1976) and by the Permanent representative of Mauritania on behalf of the Group of African states with a letter dated July 6, 1976 (U.N. Doc. S/12I28). 95 U.N. Doc. S / I2I 38. U.N. Doc. S / I2I j9. 97 U.N. Doc. S/PV.I9q.3, July 14, 1976, at p. 76. 98 The result of the vote was as follows: 6 in favour (France, Italy, Japan, Sweden, United Kingdom, United States), none against, 2 abstentions (Panama, Romania). Seven delegations (Benin, China, Guyana, Libya, Pakistan, URSS, Tanzania) did not participate in the vote. See S/PV.I�q.3, July 14, 1976, at p. 81. � On the night of December 28, 1968, eight Israeli helicopters took part in an attack on the Beirut International Airport. There was no loss of life but all commercial aircraft belonging to Arab airlines were destroyed. The Beirut raid, defended by

the Israeli Government as a retaliation for an attack by two Arabs on December 26, upon an El Al passenger plane at the Athens Airport, was considered by the Security Council on December 29 in an emergency session requested by Lebanon. On December 31, the Security Council, by a vote of 15-o adopted a resolution condemning Israel for its " premeditated military action in violation of its obligations under the Charter ": U.N. Doc. S/RES/262 (1968). The resolution is also reprinted in A.J.I.L. 1969, vol. 63, p. 681. For a legal approach of the Beirut raid, see R. A. FALK, " The Beirut raid and the international law of retalaition ", A.J.LL. 63 (1969), pp. 415-443. 100 The Israeli raid was considered an aggression in their statements by many repre- sentatives at the Security Council debate. They spoke, in particular, of a transgression of the Resolution 3314 of the General Assembly [U.N. Doc. A/RES/3314 (XXIX, December 14, 1974] defining as aggression " the use of armed force by a state against the sove- reignty, territorial integrity or political indipendence of another state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Charter of the United Nations, as set out in this Definition " See, for instance, the statements of Mauritania (U.N. Doc. S/PV.1939), Panama (U.N. Doc. S/PV.1942), USSR (U.N. Doc. S/PV.194I). Contra see the statements of Israel (U.N. Doc. S/PV.1942) and France (U.N. Doc. S/PV.1943). 101 See the statements of the representatives of the United States of America (U.N. Doc. S/PV.1941, at p. 31) and Israel (U.N. Doc. S/PV.1939 at p. 52 ff.). With regard to the principle of the " protection of mankind " and the Israeli raid, see the different opinions of C. ZORGBIBE, " La protection d'humanite, Le Monde, July 7, 1976, p. 2 and of J. SCHWOEBEL, " Le raid et la charte de 1'ONU ", Le Monde, July 9, 1976, p. 2.

102 U.N. Doc. S/PV.1943, at p. 38. Io3 See the statements of the representatives of Mauritania, " .., we are convinced that in future it (the Entebbe raid) will make even more difficult any peaceful solution to similar tragedies. It is clear, indeed, that those who, regrettably, go in for hijacking of aircraft and the taking of hostages will draw a conclusion which can in no way to be the advantage of innocent people. Henceforth, there is nothing to prevent the hijackers of aircraft from carrying out their threats, knowing the risk and the danger of death which will be involved, in any case, in negotiations undertaken with them. The result of the Israel adventure cannot, therefore, be to the benefit of innocent people who may, infor- tunately, one day find themselves taken hostages by individuals who are often irresponsible, having everything to gain and nothing to lose " (U.N. Doc. S/PV.1939, at p. 28). See also the intervention of Lybia (U.N. Doc. S/PV.i943, at p. 16).

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