Section 11 of the United Nations Headquarters Agreement
8. The United Nations has stated that the negotiations, which are a condition for a dispute under article 21 of the Headquarters Agreement to be submitted to compulsory arbitration, were originally conducted on 7 January 1988, the content of which remains unclear. It appears that a meeting of 12 January 1988 did not, in the opinion of the Secretary-General, provide the necessary guarantee to maintain the existing arrangements for the PLO observer mission. This could double the conclusion that there were no negotiations on the “interpretation or application” of Articles 11, 12 and 13, but only consultations in which the United Nations, it seems, repeatedly sought assurances from the United States that, given the similarity of the parties with respect to these articles, the PLO Office would not be closed despite the enactment of the Anti-terrorism Act. On the other hand, the position of the United States in those consultations was as follows: “. The staff of the PLO Observer Mission are present in the United States exclusively in their capacity as “guests” of the United Nations within the meaning of the Headquarters Agreement. We are therefore obliged to allow the personnel of the PLO observer mission to enter and remain in the United States to carry out their official duties at United Nations Headquarters. (Congressional Record, Vol. 133, No. 78, p.
S6449). A proposal that produces such strange results should not be unreasonably suspected of providing its own rebuttal. I suspect that the superstructure of the argument is initially based too narrowly on an interpretation that may be unrelated to the dispute settlement formula prescribed by Article 21 of the Agreement. Before developments reached that date, the Secretary-General wrote on 13 September. In October 1987, he addressed the Permanent Representative of the United States and expressed grave concern at the Senate`s adoption of an amendment to make it illegal to maintain a PLO office in the United States. Recalling the wording of the Secretary of State`s letter of 29 January 1987, he stated: “I agree with the views expressed by the Secretary of State on this matter … ». A third supporting consideration stems from the principle of interpretation prescribed in Article 27 of the Agreement, according to which `in the absence of any assurance as to the maintenance of the existing regime for the PLO observer mission, the incompatibility of this Law with the obligations of the host country under the Headquarters Agreement has led to a dispute within the meaning of Article 21 of the Agreement`. Section 28. The provisions of this Article may be applied to comparable officials of the specialized agencies where the relational arrangements concluded in accordance with Article 63 of the Charter so provide. On the second point, namely whether it was a dispute “concerning the interpretation or application” of the headquarters agreement within the meaning of Article 21, there seems to be an argument that, although a dispute is at issue, the dispute did not concern the “interpretation” of the headquarters agreement because the Secretary of State shared the Views of the Secretary-General on the status of the PLO observer mission.
in the context of the agreement and that, moreover, the dispute does not concern the “application” of the agreement because the PLO`s observation mission has not yet been concluded. When, in the case of U.S. diplomatic and consular personnel in Tehran, U.S. attempts to negotiate with Iran “resulted in an impasse due to the Iranian government`s refusal to enter into a discussion on the issue,” the Court concluded that “at present, not only a dispute, but also without a doubt, a “dispute”. not satisfactorily adapted by diplomacy` within the meaning of the relevant text of the case-law (I.C.J. Reports 1980, p. 27, paragraph 51). In the present case, the Court considers that the dispute between the United Nations and the United States is a `dispute not settled by negotiation` within the meaning of Article 21(a) of the Headquarters Agreement. 41. The Court should also emphasise that the dispute complained of relates exclusively to what the United Nations considers to be its rights under the Headquarters Agreement.
The purpose of arbitration under this Agreement is precisely to settle any dispute between the Organization and the host country without first bringing an action before the local courts, and it would be contrary to both the letter and the spirit of the Agreement if the implementation of this procedure were subject to such prior appeal. .