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Analysis: Protecting Palestinians after we join the UN
Published Monday 29/08/2011 (updated) 29/08/2011 20:44
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In the Nov. 15 1988 Palestinian Declaration of Independence that was approved by the Palestinian National Council, representing all Palestinians all over the world, the executive committee of the PLO was set up as the Provisional Government for the State of Palestine --pursuant to my advice.

In addition, the Declaration of Independence also provides that all Palestinians living around the world automatically become citizens of the State of Palestine -- pursuant to my advice. So the executive committee of the PLO in its capacity as the Provisional Government for the State of Palestine will continue to represent the interests of all Palestinians around the world when Palestine becomes a UN member state.

Hence all rights will be preserved: for all Palestinians and for the PLO. No one will be disenfranchised. The PLO will not lose its status. This legal arrangement does not violate the Palestinian Charter, but was approved already by the PNC.

Unfortunately, Oxford professor Guy Goodwill-Gill has circulated a memo full of distortions. It is based on many erroneous assumptions. This professor is not aware of all the legal and constitutional technicalities that were originally built into the Palestinian Declaration of Independence to make sure that his doomsday scenario does not materialize -- at my advice.

All rights have been protected and will be protected by Palestine becoming a member state of the United Nations, including the right of return. Indeed, in the memo I originally did for President Arafat and the PLO back in 1988, I explained how we could obtain UN membership.

All of the advice that I gave to President Arafat and the PLO in 1987 to 1989 was originally premised on the assumption that some day we would apply for UN membership. That day has come. Please move forward.

I have been working for this day since I first proposed UN membership for Palestine along the lines of Namibia at the United Nations headquarters in New York in June of 1987. Palestine’s application for UN membership was my idea.

When my client and dear friend, the late, great Dr Haidar Abdul Shaffi, chair of the Palestinian delegation to the Middle East negotiations, instructed me to draft the Palestinian counteroffer to the now defunct Oslo Agreement, he most solemnly told me: “Professor Boyle, we have decided to ask you to draft this Interim Peace Agreement for us. Do whatever you want! But do not sell out our right to our state.”

And I responded to Dr Haidar: “As you know, I was the one who first called for the creation of the Palestinian state back at United Nations Headquarters in June of 1987, and then served as the legal adviser to the PLO on its creation. I will do nothing to harm it.”

As I promised Dr Haidar, I would do nothing to harm Palestine and the Palestinians.


The author is a professor of international law at the University of Illinois College of Law. A previous version of this opinion appeared on the Counterpunch website and is republished here with permission.
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1 ) Khader / Palestine
29/08/2011 14:57
Great comment, we should not be stopped this time, AIPAC, the US, Netanyahu and some Palestinians collaborating with them will not be able to stop us from our inalienable right to statehood.

2 ) EE / UK
29/08/2011 16:41
Apparently, everything in the world going on in accordance with Francis Boyle’s ideas and proposals. I wonder, did he also discover electricity and invented Internet? Or Al Gore did it?

3 ) Yehuda Solomon / Israel
29/08/2011 17:24
Although I am an ultra-nationalist and deeply opposed to any Palestinian nation in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, I must say Professor Boyle has very clearly explained his position regarding the legal concerns of Palestinian independence (there) based on what he has done from his devotion to this cause in relation to the concerns of Professor Guy Goodwill-Gill and others of recent reporting. (Ma'an News Agency has done a great job of reporting on all this so far from all sides.) (continued ...)

4 ) Yehuda Solomon / Israel
29/08/2011 17:36
I highly commend Professor Boyle for being honest: He himself has clearly stated that, if an independent Palestinian nation is born of the U.N., all Palestinian rights will be preserved and protected by its U.N. membership such as the Right-of-Return, East Jerusalem as its capital, etc. It is precisely for these reasons that, in reciprocal honesty, I will say we will never recognize a (second) Palestinian nation in the Gaza Strip and West Bank. If we are expelled from the U.N., then so be it.

5 ) Tibi / Tubas
29/08/2011 18:22

UNLESS WE THREATEN AND ATTACK OUR NEIGHBOR - ISRAEL,
PALESTINIANS WILL NOT NEED PROTECTING.


6 ) Armed With Words / Global Media
30/08/2011 01:06
Yehuda Solomon ~ "a (second) Palestinian nation"? The problem with the "Jordan is Palestine" narrative is that it would expose the Zionist's attempt to claim the prime coastal territory and push the Arabs into the desert. Is that really the narrative you want to spread? I'll help.

7 ) EE / UK
30/08/2011 13:41
6 - help, help, help

8 ) @ #6 / In Our Culture
30/08/2011 16:50

After We "attempted to claim the prime coastal territory"
( in joint Arab army 1948, 1967, & 1973 invasions), and
After We attempted to push the Jews into the sea,
We gave the Zionists have every right to do the same to us
( in our culture, and we're "lucky they are so damn "western"),
"and push the Arabs back into the desert" !!!


9 ) Elizabeth / UK
31/08/2011 15:30
Finally a piece on the most recent controversy on Palestine - this time among the Palestinians themselves - that presents clarity and logic, not rhetoric and fear mongering. Go forward and do not be held back that senseless bickering that rather than advances your just cause, helps to keep the status quo, as Israel would wish.

10 ) Hazem / UK
01/09/2011 04:19
All rights have been protected and will be protected by Palestine becoming a member state of the United Nations, including the right of return.!!! HOW? there is nothing in this article why is it published ?

11 ) @ #9 / senseless bickering
02/09/2011 22:47

Senseless bickering, or NOT, the only way out is Negotiations,
- Negotiations that lead to accepting less than 1967 borders, &
- Negotiations that lead to accepting less refugee return,
which is something they may never be able to do,
so you can forget about Palestine becoming a REAL state,
though it may become UN member #194 !!!


12 ) johnny benson / usa
03/09/2011 05:38
hey.....the desert is the arabs land...thats where jordan is...thats where the arabs who call themselves palestinians belong

13 ) Tariq / Palestine
18/09/2011 15:58
“Professor Boyle, we have decided to ask you to draft this Interim Peace Agreement for us. Do whatever you want! But do not sell out our right to our state.” WHAT A DISASTER? Actually this agreement was the most harmful and disastrous on the Palestinian cause, and now we continue to pay heavy price.
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