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United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)
18 May 1989


Executive Board

Hundred and thirty-first Session
1. In a letter dated 27 April 1989 addressed to the Director-General (Annex I), Mr Yasser Arafat applied for the admission of the 'State of Palestine as a member of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization'.1

2. In a letter dated 11 May 1989 (Annex II), the Director-General transmitted this application to the Chairman of the Executive Board so that he might submit it for consideration by the Executive Board in order that the latter might follow it up in the most appropriate manner.

3. The Director-General considers that the Executive Board, in examining this request, should take into consideration Article II, paragraph 2, of the Constitution (see Annex III), Articles 92 and 93 of the Rules of Procedure of the General Conference (see Annex IV) and resolution 43/177 adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 15 December 1988 (see Annex V).

1. The Director-General received this letter on 9 May 1989.


The President
Mr Federico Mayor
Director-General of UNESCO

Sir,

Expressing the wish of the Palestinian people to play an active part, alongside other peace-loving peoples, in forging closer co-operative links between nations in the fields of education, science and culture, I have the honour, in my capacity as President of the State of Palestine, to submit an application for the admission of the State of Palestine to membership of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

I wish to affirm that the State of Palestine is willing to abide by UNESCO's Constitution, to accept the obligations contained therein and to contribute to the expenses of the Organization.

I am confident of a favourable response on your part to this desire of the Palestinian people to make a constructive contribution to intercultural dialogue and to the preservation of the cultural identity of peoples with a view to ensuring universal respect for justice, human rights and fundamental freedoms for all, without distinction as to race, sex, language or religion, in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations.

I am further confident that you will spare no effort to comply with the regulations in force in submitting this application for membership of UNESCO to the Executive Board and the General Conference at its twenty-fifth session.

On behalf of the Palestinian people, I take this opportunity to express our deep appreciation of the sincere initiatives and efforts that UNESCO has undertaken and continues to undertake on behalf of the Palestinian people and for the common benefit of the whole human race.

Accept, Sir, the assurances of my highest consideration.


Tunis, 27 April 1989.
State of Palestine
Palestine Liberation Organization



The Director-General Reference: DG/89/205

11 May 1989

Dear Mr Chairman,

I am forwarding to you herewith the letter dated 27 April which Mr Yasser Arafat sent to me requesting the admission of Palestine as a Member State of Unesco.

You may deem it opportune to submit this question for consideration by the Executive Board in order that the latter may follow it up in the most appropriate manner.

Mr Jose Israel Vargas
Chairman of the Executive Board
UNESCO House

131 EX/45
ANNEX III

CONSTITUTION

Article II - Membership


2. Subject to the conditions of the Agreement between this Organization and the United Nations Organization, approved pursuant to Article X of this Constitution, States not members of the United Nations Organization may be admitted to membership of the Organization, upon recommendation of the Executive Board, by a two-thirds majority vote of the General Conference.

GENERAL CONFERENCE: RULES OF PROCEDURE

Rule 92

States not members of the United Nations and territories or groups of territories

[Const.II.2]

1. Any State not a member of the United Nations which desires to become a member of UNESCO shall submit an application to the Director-General. This application shall be accompanied by a statement that the particular State is willing to abide by the Constitution, to accept the obligations contained therein and to contribute to the expenses of the Organization.

[Const.II.3]

2. Application for Associate Membership by territories or groups of territories not responsible for their international relations may be made on their behalf by the Member State or other authority having responsibility for their international relations. The application shall be accompanied by a statement from the Member State or other authority concerned that it accepts responsibility on behalf of the territory or territories concerned for the discharge of the obligations contained in the Constitution and of the financial contributions assessed by the General Conference as payable by the territory or territories concerned.

Rule 93 Consideration of applications

[Const.II.2 and V.B.6]

1. Applications by States not members of the United Nations for membership of UNESCO shall, upon recommendation of the Executive Board', be dealt with by the General Conference in accordance with the provisions of Article II, paragraph 2, of the Constitution.

2. Applications for Associate Membership of UNESCO by territories or groups of territories shall be considered by the General Conference in accordance with the provisions of Article II, paragraph 3, of the Constitution.


General Assembly
            Distr. GENERAL

            A/RES/43/177

            20 December 1988

Forty-third session
Agenda item 37


RESOLUTION ADOPTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY
[without reference to a Main Committee (A/43/L.54 and Add.l)]
43/177.
Question of Palestine


The General Assembly,

Having considered the item entitled "Question of Palestine",

Recalling its resolution 181 (II) of 29 November 1947, in which, inter alia,, it called for the establishment of an Arab State and a Jewish State in Palestine,

Mindful of the special responsibility of the United Nations to achieve a just solution to the question of Palestine,

Aware of the proclamation of the State of Palestine by the Palestine National Council in line with General Assembly resolution 181 (II) and in exercise of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people,

Affirming the urgent need to achieve a just and comprehensive settlement in the Middle East which, inter alia, provides for peaceful coexistence for all States in the region,

Recalling its resolution 3237 (XXIX) of 22 November 1974 on the observer status for the Palestine Liberation Organization and subsequent relevant resolutions,

1. Acknowledges the proclamation of the State of Palestine by the Palestine National Council on 15 November 1988;

2. Affirms the need to enable the Palestinian people to exercise their sovereignty over their territory(occupied since 1967;

3. Decides that, effective as of 15 December 1988, the designation "Palestine" should be used in place of the designation "Palestine Liberation Organization" in the United Nations system, without prejudice to the observer status and functions of the Palestine Liberation Organization within the United Nations system, in conformity with relevant United Nations resolutions and practice;

4. Requests the Secretary-General to take the necessary action to implement the present resolution.

82nd plenary meeting
15 December 1988