A/42/915/Add.1 (25 February 1988)

Forty-second session - Agenda item 136


Report of the Secretary-General


1. Since the previous report of the Secretary-General (A/42/915) of 10 February 1988, there have been no substantive developments which could be reported under General Assembly resolution 42/210 B of 17 December 1987. After the Secretary-General learned on 10 February 1988 that the United States Administration had not made its decision with respect to the application of the legislation in question to the Permanent Observer Mission of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) to the United Nations in New York, the Legal Counsel of the United Nations was advised unofficially that there would be a high-level meeting in Washington on 18 February 1988 to consider the question. On 18 February 1988, however, the Legal Counsel was informed orally by the State Department Legal Adviser that a decision had still not been taken by the United States Government concerning the application or enforcement of the legislation with regard to the PLO Observer Mission to the United Nations in New York. Further inquiries established that no new date for a decision had been set. There have been no further communications between the United Nations and the United States on the substance of the matter since that date.

2. On 11 February 1988, the Legal Counsel of the United Nations, referring to the letter of 14 January 1988 addressed to Ambassador Walters by the Secretary-General, in which the United Nations formally invoked the dispute settlement procedure set out in section 21 of the Headquarters Agreement, informed the Legal Adviser of the State Department of the United Nations choice of Mr. Eduardo Jimenez de Arechaga, former President and Judge of the International Court of Justice, as arbitrator, in the event of an arbitration under section 21 of that Agreement. In view of the time constraints under which both parties find themselves, the Legal Counsel urged the Legal Adviser of the State Department to inform the United Nations as soon as possible of the choice made by the United States of America. No communication has thus far been received in this regard from the United States.

3. As delegations are aware, by a letter dated 18 February 1988 (A/42/919) addressed to the President of the General Assembly, the Permanent Representative of Bahrain, acting in his capacity as Chairman of the Arab Group, requested the reconvening of the forty-second session of the General Assembly. A similar request was made in a letter dated 22 February 1988 (A/42/921) from the Permanent Representative of Zimbabwe, on behalf of the Coordinating Bureau of the Movement of Non-Aligned Countries. By their letters dated 22 February 1988 (A/42/922) and 24 February 1988 (A/42/924), respectively, the Permanent Representative of Kuwait, on behalf of the members of the organization of the Islamic Conference in New York, and the Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, on behalf of the Committee, supported the request to reconvene the General Assembly. After consultations with the Regional Groups, the General assembly has been reconvened for 29 February 1988.