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Report of the Secretary-General**
5. A summary of the reports of the organizations and agencies of the United Nations system on their cooperation with the League of Arab States during the period under review follows. It represents the follow-up action on proposals adopted at the meeting between the United Nations and the League of Arab States in Vienna in 2001 (see A/56/474, sect. IV).
D. United Nations Development Programme
16. Collaboration between the League of Arab States and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is grounded in a substantive partnership to serve Arab people. Priorities of the League in the developmental field and the UNDP regional cooperation framework for Arab States provide the context for joint activities and programmes. Collaboration took place in the areas of human development, information communications technology for development, as well as trade and support to the Palestinian people.
I. United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East
27. The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) continued to cooperate with the League of Arab States over the course of the past year, primarily on matters pertaining to education services. UNRWA provided services for some 483,000 Palestinian refugee students in elementary and preparatory schools located in Jordan, Lebanon, the Syrian Arab Republic, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.
28. Cooperation with the League of Arab States was maintained through the League’s Council of Educational Affairs for Palestinians. The Council’s eleventh joint meeting was held at the League’s secretariat headquarters in Cairo in December 2001 and was attended by the most senior UNRWA education officials from each of its five fields of operation, as well as the Chief of the Education Planning and Management. The Agency’s educational activities and achievements were assessed at the meeting, as were the main obstacles hindering implementation of education services. In addition, problems faced by UNRWA regarding its education staff, students, school buildings, school curriculum and education accessories were also discussed. Views were exchanged regarding the best means to remove obstacles. A report produced following the meeting provided a comprehensive review of the development and status of cooperation in the field between UNRWA and member States of the League of Arab States.
29. UNRWA also maintained high-level contacts with the League of Arab States. The Commissioner-General of UNRWA attended the League of Arab States summit held in Beirut in March 2002.
** The present report is being submitted on 6 September 2002 in order to include all contributions from the United Nations system.