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Source: Division for Palestinian Rights (DPR)
11 June 1997

REPORT OF THE UNITED NATIONS NORTH AMERICAN NGO SYMPOSIUM ON THE QUESTION OF PALESTINE

Theme: “Thirty years of occupation - Looking ahead towards
self-determination and statehood”
United Nations, New York
9 - 11 June 1997



CONTENTS



I. INTRODUCTION

II. KEYNOTE ADDRESS

III. PANEL DISCUSSION

Panel I

Panel II

Panel III

IV. CLOSING STATEMENTS


Annexes

I. Recommendations of the workshops

II. North American Coordinating Committee for NGOs on the Question of Palestine, 1997-1998

III. List of participants and observers




I. INTRODUCTION


1. The United Nations North American NGO Symposium on the Question of Palestine was held under the auspices of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, at United Nations Headquarters, New York, from 9 to 11 June 1997, pursuant to General Assembly resolutions 51/23 and 51/24 of 4 December 1996. The theme of the Symposium was "Thirty years of occupation - Looking ahead towards self-determination and statehood".

2. A total of 74 non-governmental organizations (NGOs) from Canada and the United States (14 of them as observers) participated in the work of the Symposium, as well as 10 panelists, who also participated in workshops as resource persons. Representatives of 10 Governments, one intergovernmental organization and three United Nations agencies participated as observers. A delegation of Palestine also attended.

3. The Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People was represented by Mr. Ibra Deguène Ka (Senegal), Chairman; Mr. Ravan A. G. Farhadi (Afghanistan), Vice-Chairman; Mr. Bruno Eduardo Rodríguez Parrilla (Cuba), Vice-Chairman; and Mr. Victor Pace (Malta).

4. The North American NGO Symposium was preceded by a special high-level meeting of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People to commemorate the thirtieth anniversary of the occupation by Israel of the Palestinian territory, including Jerusalem. All NGOs were invited to attend the special meeting in lieu of a formal opening session for the Symposium. The opening and closing meetings of the Symposium were chaired by Mr. Ka. The plenaries were chaired by designated NGO representatives.

5. The NGO Symposium began with a keynote address entitled "Thirty years of occupation: Looking ahead towards self-determination and statehood" by Dr. Haidar Abdel Shafi, member of the Palestinian Council.

6. In the first panel, entitled "Key issues of a just and comprehensive settlement of the question of Palestine", three topics were considered: "Israeli settlements", "Jerusalem" and "Palestine refugees and displaced persons". Presentations were made by Mr. Geoffrey Aronson, editor of the Report on Israeli settlements in the Occupied Territories, Middle East Peace Foundation, in Washington D.C.; Rev. Naim Ateek, Director of Sabeel Liberation Theology Center in Jerusalem; Mr. Eitan Felner, Executive Director of B'Tselem, the Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in Jerusalem; and Mr. Elia Zureik, Professor of Sociology at Queens University, in Kingston, Canada.

7. In the second panel, entitled "Transition towards permanent status - The role of the international community", two topics were considered: "The role of North America" and "The role of the neighbouring countries". Presentations were made by Mr. Gabriel Habib, Consultant to the National Council of Churches in the United States; and Mr. Gershon Baskin, Co-Director of the Israel/Palestine Center for Research and Information in Jerusalem.

8. In the third panel, entitled "Promoting joint action of Palestinian and North American NGOs in support of the transition to self-determination and statehood", three topics were considered: "Palestinian NGOs", "Women's Movement" and “United States NGOs". Presentations were made by Mr. Samir Barghouti, General Director of the Arab Center for Agricultural Development in Jerusalem; Ms. Suha Hindiyeh-Mani, Director and one of the founders of the Women's Studies Centre in Jerusalem; and Ms. Barbara Lubin, Executive Director of the Children's Middle East Network in Berkeley, California.

9. Five workshops were held on the following topics: (a) "Mobilizing action to oppose the Israeli policy of fait accompli"- "Settlements and Jerusalem"; (b) "Palestine refugees"; (c) "30 years of occupation, 50 years of partition: Joint campaigns with International, North American, Israeli and Palestinian NGOs towards ending the occupation"; (d) "Promoting sustainable development in the Palestinian territories"; (e) "North American public education on the question of Palestine". Annex I contains the recommendations of the workshops.

10. Six members of the North American Coordinating Committee for NGOs were elected for the period 1997-1998 at the final session of the Symposium (see annex II).

II. KEYNOTE ADDRESS

"Thirty years of occupation: "Looking ahead towards self-determination and statehood"

11. Dr. Haider Abdel-Shafi, Member of the Palestinian Council, said that on 15 November 1988, when the Palestine National Council adopted the Declaration of Independence, thus accepting the two-
State principle as a basis for reaching a peaceful settlement, Israel rejected the offer, thus reconfirming the old Zionist claim to all of Palestine. Israel adopted a trilateral strategy to implement its objectives: acquire territory legally or illegally, immediately start construction of physical structures in order to present the world with a fait accompli, and engage in distortion and falsification of facts to mislead world opinion.

12. He emphasized that one of the basic rules of the peace process was to refrain from any action on the ground during the interim period. What had taken place, so far, since the start of the peace process, was an Israeli redeployment from the main cities and some refugee camps. Aside from this, Israel still controlled 90% of the West Bank and 30% of the Gaza Strip. It had confiscated over three million dunams of Arab territory, and uprooted over 150,000 fruit-bearing trees. The settler population had increased by 20% since the signing of the Oslo agreement and twentyPalestinian villages were absorbed in the illegal annexation of expanded East Jerusalem. On the
pretext of security, Israel was maintaining a blockade which had already crippled the economy of the occupied territories, where half of the population were on the verge of hunger. Israel could not claim both security and Arab territory at the same time.

13. Dr. Abdel Shafi concluded by saying that the Palestinians were in a real predicament. He was critical of the general attitude of apathy and inaction of the international community as well as of Palestinian failures and repeated mistakes. In his view, until the Palestinian house was put in order, Palestinians would not be a match for what was required. In order to face Israeli aggression, the first requirement was to achieve better steadfastness and find the means to exploit whatever potential Palestinians possessed. This meant better organization and concerted action, which was only possible through democratic change.

III. PANEL DISCUSSION

Panel I. Key issues of a just and comprehensive settlement of the question of Palestine
Israeli settlements

14. Mr. Geoffrey Aronson, Editor of the Report on Israeli Settlements in the Occupied Territories, Middle East Peace Foundation, Washington, D.C., expressed the view that the Oslo accords were based on the presumption that one could have peace and settlement expansion at the same time. Citing United States statistics, he showed the extent of the ongoing settlement expansion: nine thousand housing units in the West Bank, in various stages of planning, the new housing at Jabal Abu Ghneim which had a capacity of 6,500 units, plus the tens and hundreds of other units being built in the eastern sector of the city on a daily basis.


15. That settlement expansion, however was constrained by some objective factors: the condition of Israel's national economy, and the absence of the kind of demand push that dominated Israel's housing market in the 1992-1996 period and which had led to an additional 50,000 settlers, as a result of the arrival of almost half a million new Israeli citizens, mostly from the former Soviet Union. In addition, the Labour Government had bequeathed to its successor some 50,000 units of settlement housing in various stages of construction. All of these components together created very real constraints upon the ability of the current Government to match in fact the records that its predecessors since 1992 had achieved at least in terms of the population expansion of settlements in the West Bank and Gaza.

16. Mr. Aronson pointed out that Prime Minister Netanyahu was now implementing his long-held intention to refashion the Oslo process by introducing new interpretations and shift away from the whole issue of redeployment. The issue of Jabal Abu Ghneim meant the battle for Jerusalem. Recently published maps showing the Government’s proposed annexation of more than 50% of the West Bank for security reasons, marked the beginning of the battle over the borders of "Greater Israel".

Jerusalem

17. Rev. Naim Ateek, Canon of Saint George's Cathedral and Director of Sabeel Liberation Theology Center, Jerusalem, recalled that for Christians, the most important events of human history had taken place in Jerusalem, especially with the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. At the same time, Jerusalem was holy for Muslims and Jews as well. He said that despite Israel's claim to unite the city, it was becoming a city for only one people, and one faith, its mosaic character being shattered. The Jerusalem of today was shaped along lines of discrimination, racism and exclusiveness. The Government of Israel had lost its moral fiber. It wanted to impose its will on the Palestinians and achieve its expansionist policies by devouring the Palestinian land and preventing the establishment of a Palestinian State and the sharing of Jerusalem.

18. In his view, the resolution of the conflict should be brought back to the United Nations. Without the establishment of a Palestinian State in the whole West Bank and Gaza with East Jerusalem as its capital, alongside the State of Israel, there would never be a secure peace for Israel. History taught that no one group could exclusively possess Jerusalem. Justice alone could produce a durable peace. Peace based on justice would yield security and open the way to reconciliation and healing.

19. Mr. Eitan Felner, Executive Director of B'Tselem, the Israeli Information Center for Human Rights, Jerusalem, said that since the annexation of East Jerusalem in 1967, under both Likud and Labor governments, one central goal had dictated Israel's policies in the city: to create a demographic and geographic reality that would pre-empt any future effort to challenge Israeli sovereignty in East Jerusalem. Since 1967, Israel had expropriated more than a third of the land in East Jerusalem. Although Palestinians were the owners of most of those lands, more than 39,000 units had been built for Jews on them, but not one housing unit for the Palestinians. The massive construction of Jewish neighbourhoods was intended to entrench Jewish control on East Jerusalem and blur the "green line" that divided East from West Jerusalem. Neighbourhoods such as French Hill, Gilo or East Talpiyot were already considered by most people as an integral part of West Jerusalem.

20. Moreover, a policy to revoke the residency of Palestinian Jerusalemites was being implemented retroactively against a considerable number of persons who, over the years, had left Jerusalem, because of the numerous restrictions on building in East Jerusalem and the refusal to approve family reunification. In contrast, Israelis could leave the country for as long as they liked and always had the right to return. The deportation policy was based on the premise that East Jerusalem Palestinians were immigrants who lived in their homes by virtue of a permanent residency permit which Israel granted them.

Palestine refugees and displaced persons

21. Mr. Elia Zureik, Professor of Sociology at Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario, Canada, and Member of the Palestinian delegation to the Refugee Working Group, described the size and composition of the Palestinian population and the various categories that comprised refugees and displaced persons. The figures were based on a variety of sources, including data collected by the United States International Bureau Division. He said that less than 50% of the Palestinian population remained in what used to be historical Palestine. The number of registered Palestine refugees with the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) in 1995 was around 3.4 million people. There were 200,000 Palestinian refugees from 1948 not registered with the Agency who had left for countries other than Jordan, Syria and Lebanon. Around 20% of the Palestinian population who lived in Israel as Israeli citizens were internally displaced persons: 30,000 and 40,000 in 1948, the current estimate being 150,000 to 180,000 persons. The 1967 war had displaced around 200,000 persons; their number was currently estimated at 400,000 to 500,000 persons. There was also a category called "latecomers", those individuals who had gone abroad and were not allowed to go back; their
estimated figure was between 80,000 and 100,000 individuals. Finally, there were those who had been deported by Israel. Overall, the estimated number of refugees and displaced persons was 4 million individuals out of a total of 8 million Palestinians.

Panel II. Transition towards permanent status - The role of the international community
The role of North America

22. Mr. Gabriel Habib, Consultant to the National Council of Churches in the United States, said that the Palestinians, the Arab countries in the Middle East and the international community were deeply worried about the future because of the events imposed by Israel on the ground. There was scepticism regarding the two-State solution and the Oslo agreement and its implementation; nevertheless Palestinians considered them a significant beginning for their process of liberation and attainment of their national rights. The international community, the sponsors of the peace process, the United Nations, and the NGOs had a role to fulfil. They should intervene before it was too late, devise plans to protect and develop the Palestinian economy, exert pressure on the Palestinian Authority to demonstrate its democratic ability and pressure Israel to comply with international law. The United Nations should coordinate Member States' activities for peace and development, to intensify its work in the Palestinian territory in general, in the Palestinian refugee camps in particular and to resist any attempt to change General Assembly and Security Council resolutions related to Palestinian rights, the Jewish settlements and East Jerusalem.

The role of the neighbouring countries

23. Mr. Gershon Baskin, Co-Director of the Israel-Palestine Center for Research and Information, Jerusalem, said that Prime Minister Netanyahu had succeeded in changing the rules of the Oslo accords. The United States seemed unable to use its influence with the sides to get the peace process back on course. Palestinian efforts to rally the support of the Arab world with Egypt taking the lead were constrained by that country's deep dependence on United States aid. The Arab world had frozen contacts with Israel, yet this had little influence in changing the course of events. In light of the stalemate, Palestinians were trying to get the international community to impose sanctions against Israel.

24. Mr. Baskin said that it was quite clear that Palestinians were holding significantly fewer cards than the Israelis; moreover, cards such as violence and fundamentalism were more damaging to Palestinians than to Israel. They would enable Israel to capture and hold on to the higher moral ground and exploit it in the international arena, whereas it was the Palestinians who should capture the higher moral ground. He was convinced, more than ever, that a possible breakthrough could be found in a trilateral solution involving Jordan, Israel and the Palestinians. This was not aimed at neglecting Palestinian sovereignty but at strengthening that option by linking it to a regional framework that could provide better solutions for issues of security and economic development. In his view, in the next three and half years, the Israeli Government would continue to build settlements and would not honour its commitments. Israelis would, in a very sophisticated way, accentuate Palestinian violations and breaches of the agreements. The only way to prevent that was to fully carry out Palestinian obligations. He suggested that Palestinians should concentrate on creating a real democracy.



Panel III.
Promoting joint action of Palestinian and North American NGOs in support of the transition to self-determination and statehood
Palestinian NGOs

25. Mr. Samir Barghouti, General Director, Arab Center for Agricultural Development, Jerusalem, said that there was hardly any change if one compared the situation today with that prior to the Oslo agreements. Israel was still confiscating Palestinian land, continued to hold 6,000 Palestinian detainees, continued to violate the clauses allowing for the free movement of labour, goods and services, and prevented Palestinian goods from entering Israel or other countries. The Palestinian GNP had declined by 18%, and the per capita GNP by 35%, since the signing of the Oslo agreement.

26. He went on to say that Palestinians throughout their history had never enjoyed the right to self-determination. This historical reality had created a very strong NGO movement with decades of experience and expertise. In the West Bank and Gaza, there were over 1,200 NGOs, charitable societies and professional unions. In the health sector, NGOs were in charge of no less than 60% of primary care services and about 49% of secondary care. In the education sector, NGOs managed 100% of the pre-school programmes, and a significant proportion of schools and universities. In the economic sector, the majority of the micro-credit was extended by NGOs along with more than 90% of the business support services. This was in addition to the services provided by NGOs in the fields of human rights, gender issues and other social services.


27. Mr. Barghouti concluded expressing the view that the Palestinian Authority should create a complementary relationship with the NGOs, which should be defined in legislation and approved by the Palestinian Council; the NGO sector had prepared a draft law in that regard. He noted that the new reality had caused a shift in governmental donor funding towards the programmes of the Palestinian Authority; and that NGO activities had decreased by 50% in 1994 and again by one third in 1995, causing real hardship among the poor and disadvantaged in the sectors where NGOs were most active.

Women's movement

28. Ms. Suha Indiyeh-Mani, Director, Women's Studies Center, Jerusalem, said that until very recently, the Palestinian women's movement had been grouped around the national question, facing the occupation as a unifying force. Currently, in the territories under Palestinian autonomy, there were initiatives to build a women's movement. The Women's Technical Committee (WTC) was formed and its major goal was advocacy and lobbying for the promotion of gender concerns.

29. Ms. Mani described the challenges facing Palestinian women and their movement. One was that voluntary organizations indirectly reinforced women's traditional roles. The fundamentalist movement was a major challenge, campaigning in a very organized way among women and starting to oppose women's organizations as well as individual women. In addition, the Palestinian Authority was not taking any action or measures to protect women. In some ministries there were gender units but they had a long way to go. In the elections for the Palestinian Council, 28 women had stood as candidates, i.e., 4.15% of the total number of candidates. Five women had been elected. However, women's organizations and committees had learned from that experience and were now working in advocacy and lobbying for the coming municipality elections. Significant coalitions and networking among women's organizations were emerging at the national and regional levels. An example of a regional network was AISHA, the Arab Women's Forum, of which three Palestinian organizations were members: Women's Studies Center, Women's Legal and Counselling Center and Women's Affairs Center/Gaza.

United States NGOs

30. Ms. Barbara Lubin, Founder and Executive Director, Children's Middle East Network, Berkeley, California, said that since 1988 her organization had delivered more than 5 million dollars for humanitarian aid to children in the West Bank, Gaza, Lebanon and Iraq. In her view, in order for NGOs to work together, the first task was to define a common goal and to identify common strategies towards achieving that goal. The division which had characterized the NGO movement should end. There was too often internal factionalism, political considerations and personal desires among North American NGOs, which prevented the achievement of a common purpose. She went on to say that NGOs should decide, if they supported the Oslo accords, what should be done to ensure that the Palestinians achieved the desired results. Those who opposed the accords should examine what the NGOs would replace them with. The common agenda should be chosen by all the NGOs involved and as long as NGOs were working towards the same end, the different practices could become a strength and not a weakness, in supporting each other's work. NGOs had the potential to be the backbone of an international movement that successfully campaigned for peace and justice. The movement was still small, both in numbers and resources, and should grow to realize its potential. Accordingly, it was necessary to examine the causes which had kept the movement smaller than it should be.

IV. CLOSING STATEMENTS

31. Mr. Larry Ekin, Chairman of the North American Coordinating Committee for NGOs on the Question of Palestine, briefly reviewed his tenure for the past five years, and said that it had been his privilege and honour to chair that Committee. He wished his successor, David Graybeal, who had been elected Chairman of the NACC, every success in his new function.

32. Dr. Nasser Al-Kidwa, Permanent Observer of Palestine to the United Nations, said that Israel had continued to create new facts on the ground in an effort to reach unilateral results. As a consequence, in 1997, the General Assembly had held a resumed session. The Security Council had met twice, where, however, the adoption of a resolution had been blocked by two United States vetoes. Most importantly, the Tenth Emergency Special Session of the General Assembly had been convened in April 1997. For the first time in fifteen years, the General Assembly had taken that step to recommend collective actions and measures to be taken by the whole membership to preserve peace and security. The Session had adopted a very important resolution related to the question of Palestine and the role of the United Nations. It was imperative to follow it up and create a whole mechanism for the implementation of the recommendations. He stressed the importance of the report to be submitted by the Secretary-General on the implementation of the resolution. A resumed Emergency Special Session should be used as an additional tool to pressure Israel to abide by the will of the international community.

33. Mr. Ibra Deguène Ka, Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, said that the United Nations had remained greatly preoccupied with the situation on the ground as a result of the illegal Israeli settlement activities. Referring to the recent meetings of the General Assembly and the Security Council, including the Tenth Emergency Special Session, he stated that a follow-up mechanism would provide a focus for action within the United Nations in the next months. In this overall international effort to put an end to 30 years of occupation, the NGO community had an important role to play. The Committee attached great value to their continued contribution to the Palestinian cause.



ANNEX I


Recommendations of the workshops


The workshops provided an opportunity for NGO participants to discuss among themselves in greater depth and in an informal setting proposals for action in view of the current political situation as discussed in the plenary sessions. The workshops were moderated by members of the NACC; several panelists served as resource persons. Summarized below are recommendations for action supported by the participating NGOs:

- Within a month of the date of the Symposium, each US NGO representative should call five Congressmen to get a reaction to the two videos “Jerusalem-an occupation set in stone?” and “Seeds of War in Jerusalem” each Congressman had been provided with earlier. The NACC would prepare an argumentation in question/answer format to facilitate the talk.

- A divestment campaign was suggested against the Days Inn chain that had opened a hotel in the Gush Katif settlement in Gaza. Other American companies with business activities in Israeli settlements should be identified and targeted for campaigns. These campaigns should aim at alerting public opinion regarding the consequences of the Israeli settlement policy.

- The NGOs should prepare a dollar-for-dollar campaign by which the United States Administration would be asked to withhold one dollar from its aid to Israel for every dollar spent for the continuation of the occupation of Palestinian territory.

- NGOs should work to improve their credibility by using only accurate information, indicating the sources, by finding partners in the Jewish community and by following a non-biased discussion of human rights issues.

- NGOs working to support Palestine refugees should recruit students to work in Palestinian refugee camps during summer vacations.

- Tours being organized by NGOs to visit Palestinian refugee camps should levy a fee for the benefit of the camp; literature should be distributed to tourists.

- A film should be made on the conditions of the camps in Lebanon and shown in universities.

- NGO representatives should undertake to introduce in the United States a nationwide Middle East curriculum. They should seek dialogue with teachers, principals and school boards to bring forward their concerns and requests.

ANNEX II

North American Coordinating Committee for NGOs on the Question of Palestine
1997-1998


Arab Women's Council (AWA) - United States *
Canadian Council of Churches (CCC) - Canada *
Center for Middle East Studies - United States **
Episcopal Church of the U.S.A. - United States **
Friends of Sabeel - North America - United States **
Grassroots International - United States **
Methodist Federation for Social Action - United States **
Palestine Aid Society - United States *
Palestinian Women's Association of Ottawa (PWA) - Canada *
Pax World Service - United States *
Presbyterian Church USA - United States *
United Nations Association in Canada - Canada **


___________
* Reconfirmed, term expiring in 1998.
** Newly elected, term expiring in 1999.


ANNEX III
List of participants and observers


Participant NGOs

AMERAB Professional Business Network, Rutherford, New Jersey
American Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee,Washington, D.C.
American Association for the International Commission of Jurists, New York
American Educational Trust, Washington, D.C.
American Friends Service Committee, Philadelphia, PA
Americans for a Middle East Understanding, New York
Arab American Family Support Center, Brooklyn, NY
Arab Palestine Fund, Fremont, CA
Association of Arab-American University Graduates, Washington, D.C.
Canada - Palestine Association, Ontario, Canada
Canadian Council of Churches, Ontario, Canada
Catholic Relief Services, Baltimore, MD
Christian Peace Conference, New York
Church of Humanism, New York
Commission of Churches on International Affairs of World Council of Churches, New York
Council of Arab American Organizations, New York
Episcopal Church, USA, New York
Federation of American Arab Organizations, Long Island City, NY
Friends of Jerusalem (American Neturei Karta), New York
General Board of Church and Society (United Methodist Church), New York
General Board of Global Ministries (United Methodist Church), New York
General Union of Palestinian Students, Brooklyn, New York
Grassroots International, Jamaica Plains, MA
Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development, Richardson, TX
International Association of Democratic Lawyers (IADL), New York
International Association of Educators for World Peace, Huntsville, AL
International Committee for Arab-Israeli Reconciliation, Piscataway, NJ
International Jewish Peace Union, Brooklyn, New York
International Movement for Unity among Races and Peoples, Madison, NJ
Louisville Committee for Israeli/Palestinian States, Louisville, KY
Methodist Federation for Social Action, Staten Island, NY
Middle East Children's Alliance, Berkeley, CA
Middle East Fellowship of Southern California, Burbank, CA
Middle East Preservation of Secure Travel Sites, Columbus, OH
Moral Rearmament, New York
Muslim World League, New York
National Council of Churches of Christ in the USA, New York
National Training Center for Resource Center Directors, Richmond, VA
Near East Cultural and Educational Foundation of Canada (NECEF), Toronto, Canada
Palestine Aid Society (NY National Office), Ann Arbor, MI
Palestine Human Rights Campaign of Georgia, Stone Mountain, GA
Palestine Red Crescent Society, New York
Palestine Women's Association of Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Palestinian American Chamber of Commerce Ltd., Huntington Station, NY
Palestinian American Congress, Kew Gardens, NY
Palestinian American Society of Engineers, Brooklyn, NY
Pax World Service, Washington, D.C.
Presbyterian Church (USA), New York
Princeton Middle East Society, Princeton, NJ
Quaker United Nations Office (Friends World Committee for Consultation), New York
Resources for Change, Inc.(Middle East International), Washington, D.C.
Solidarity International, Washington, D.C.
Union of Palestinian American Women, Bridgeview, IL
United Church Board for World Ministries, New York
United Holy Land Fund, Chicago, IL
United Nations Association in Canada, Ottawa, Canada
War Resisters International, New York
Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, New York
World Conference on Religion and Peace, New York
World Organization of Jews from Islamic Countries, Whitestone, NY

Observer NGOs

Amnesty International, New York
Antiochian Virgin Mary Church, Yonkers, NY
Arab American Sunrise Group “The Sun Rise”, Paterson, NJ
Association for World Education, New York
Center for Middle Eastern Studies, Chicago, IL
Dayemi Complex Bangladesh, Dhaka, Bangladesh
Financial Services Volunteer Corps, New York
Ford Foundation, New York
Friends of Sabeel, New York
Inter Action, Washington, D.C.
Jewish Council for Public Affairs, Washington, D.C.
Palestine Children's Relief Fund, Kent, OH
Palestinian Mother and Child’s Care Society, Astoria, NY
United Nations Committee on Mental Health, New York


Coordinating committees for NGOs on the question of Palestine

European Coordinating Committee for NGOs on the Question of Palestine (ECCP)
North American Coordinating Committee for NGOs on the Question of Palestine (NACC)

Panelists

Dr. Haidar Abdel-Shafi
Geoffrey Aronson
Naim Ateek
Samir Barghouti
Gershon Baskin
Eitan Felner
Gabriel Habib
Suha Hindiyyeh-Mani
Barbara Lubin
Elia Zureik

Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People

Mr. Ibra Deguène Ka, Chairman
Permanent Representative of Senegal to the United Nations

Mr. Ravan A. G. Farhadi, Vice-Chairman
Permanent Representative of Afghanistan to the United Nations

Mr. Bruno Eduardo Rodríguez Parrilla, Vice-Chairman
Permanent Representative of Cuba to the United Nations

Mr. Victor Pace, Chargé d’affaires
Permanent Mission of Malta to the United Nations

Mr. Nasser Al-Kidwa
Permanent Observer of Palestine to the United Nations

Governments

Argentina
Eritrea
Guyana
Ireland
Mexico
Namibia


Organizations having received a standing invitation to participate as observers in the sessions and the work of the General Assembly and maintaining permanent observer missions at Headquarters

Palestine

United Nations bodies and agencies

International Monetary Fund (IMF)
Office of the United Nations Special Coordinator in the Occupied Territories (UNSCO)
United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)
United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA)

_____

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