US attempt to close the Mission

United Nations Headquaters

 

In late 1987, the United States was preparing to pass domestic legislation that would, among other things, call for the closing of the Permanent Observer Mission of the Palestine Liberation Organization to the United Nations in New York.  The international community, in particular UN Secretary-General, Mr. Javier Pérez de Cuéllar, stood firmly by the Mission and Ambassador Terzi, calling on the United States, as the Host Country, to uphold its treaty obligations under the 1947 Headquarters Agreement between the United States and the United Nations.  By virtue of resolution 3237 (XIXX) the PLO and its personnel were invitees of the United Nations and covered under the Agreement, therefore the United States was obligated to allow the entry and exit of PLO personnel in discharging their official duties at the United Nations in New York. The United States Congress did not head to the calls of the international community and eventually passed the domestic legislation and began proceedings in their federal courts against the Mission, attempting to close it down.  Thereafter, on 2 March 1988 the General Assembly requested an ICJ Advisory Opinion in resolution 42/229 B on the matter, which was rendered on 26 April 1988.  The Mission was never shut down due to the tremendous support of the international community and the reliance on international law, in particular the Headquarters Agreement.

Below you will find the relevant resolutions passed by the General Assembly, the related documents and Advisory Opinion of the International Court of Justice and Reports of the Secretary-General.

GA Resolutions and ICJ Advisory Opinion
Reports of the Secretary-General
Resolution 42/210 B of 17 December 1987

Called on Host Country to uphold Obligations under Headquarters Agreement
Report of the Secretary-General A/42/915
Resolutions 42/229 A+B of 2 March 1988

Request for the Advisory Opinion
Report of the Secretary-General A/42/915 add.1
Resolution 42/230 of 23 March 1988

Requested the Secretary-General to take preliminary measures to ensure the discharge of official functions of the PLO Mission, if neccessary.
Report of the Secretary-General A/42/915 add.2
Pleadings, Oral Arguments, Documents of the Request for an Advisory OpinonReport of the Secretary-General A/42/915 add.3
Unanimous ICJ Advisory Opinion rendered on 26 April 1988 Report of the Secretary-General A/42/915 add.4
Resolution 42/232 of 13 May 1988

Endorsement of the Advisory Opinion
Report of the Secretary-General A/42/915 add.5

Statement by Ambassador Dr. Riyad Mansour, before the United Nations Security Council, Open Debate on the Situation in the Middle East, including the Palestine Question on 24 April 2013

Security Council meeting on the situation in the Middle East.

Check against delivery

 

Mr. President,

I am honored to address the Security Council today, and I congratulate you and your friendly country Rwanda on your presidency and skilled leadership. We also express appreciation to the Russian Federation for its leadership of the Council in March.

I thank Mr. Jeffrey Feltman, Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs, for his briefing on developments in the Occupied Palestinian Territory as well as in the region.

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