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September 19th, 2011

PALESTINE – President Mahmoud Abbas is preparing to bid for full UN membership this Friday during the UN’s 66th General Assembly session in New York.

  • There are major debates in UN corridors and world capitals about Palestinian membership in the UN, whether as a full state or as a nonmember state with observer status
  • On Friday, President Mahmoud Abbas will formally submit an application for full membership in the United Nations to the UN Secretary General.
  • More than 120 countries globally recognize Palestine as an independent state.  However, to be approved as a full member, the Security Council must recommend membership to the General Assembly.
  • The PLO may ask for a resolution in the General Assembly for a membership upgrade to “non-member observer state,” which only requires a simple majority in the General Assembly.

Original sources: Reuters; AFP; CNN; BBC; Al Jazeera; CBS News; Mosaic News Link TV; Xinhua; The Guardian; Le Monde; Montreal Gazette; The New York Times; Seattle Post Intelligencer; People’s Daily; Tehran Times; Al-Arabiya; Jerusalem Post; Detroit Free Press; The National; Tico Times; Oman Tribune; Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty.

Analysts available for comment:

Dalia Mogahed is the Senior Analyst and Executive Director of the Gallup Center for Muslim Studies, and leads the analysis of Gallup’s unprecedented survey representing the views and opinions of more than 1 billion Muslims worldwide, including Muslims in the West. In addition to her work with Gallup, Ms. Mogahed directs the Muslim-West Facts Initiative.

CONTACT: dalia.mogahed@theglobalexperts.org

Location: North America

Languages: Arabic; English

Elazar Barkan is co-director of the Center for the Study of Human Rights, and professor of International and Public Affairs, at Columbia University. He is a frequent commentator on issues related to the Israel-Palestine conflict.

CONTACT: elazar.barkan@theglobalexperts.org

Location: North America

Languages: English

Meir Javedanfar is currently the director of the Middle East Economic and Political Analysis Company (MEEPAS), which carries out analysis of sixteen Middle Eastern countries from its offices in Tel Aviv, Israel.

CONTACT: m.javedanfar@theglobalexperts.org

Location: Middle East

Languages: English, Spanish

Marc Gopin is the James H. Laue Professor of Religion, Diplomacy and Conflict Resolution, and the Director of the Center for World Religions, Diplomacy and Conflict Resolution (CRDC) at George Mason University’s Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution.

CONTACT: marc.gopin@theglobalexperts.org

Location: North America

Language: English

John L. Esposito, Ph.D. is an expert in religion and international affairs, particularly within the context of the Middle East. A consultant to the Department of State as well as corporations, universities, and the media worldwide, Professor Esposito specializes in Islam, political Islam, and the impact of Islamic movements from North Africa to Southeast Asia.

CONTACT: john.esposito@theglobalexperts.org

Location: North America

Languages: English

Abdallah Schleifer is a veteran journalist who has covered the Middle East for American and Arab media for more than thirty years. He is Professor Emeritus at the American University in Cairo.

CONTACT: abdallah.schleifer@theglobalexperts.org

Location: Middle East

Language: English

Robert Bowker, Ph.D. became Adjunct Professor in the Centre for Arab and Islamic Studies at Australian National University (ANU) in 2008, following his retirement from the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) at the conclusion of his posting as Australian ambassador to Egypt. A specialist on Middle East and Islamic issues, Dr. Bowker joined the then-Australian Department of External Affairs in 1971.

CONTACT: bob.bowker@theglobalexperts.org

Reza Aslan is a Middle East analyst for CBS News, and a fellow at the University of Southern California’s Center on Public Diplomacy. He is an internationally acclaimed writer and scholar of religions, and holds degrees in religion from Santa Clara University, Harvard University, and the University of California, Santa Barbara, as well as a Master of Fine Arts from the University of Iowa.

CONTACT: reza.aslan@theglobalexperts.org

Location: North America

Languages: Arabic; English

Rashid Khalidi, Ph.D. has been the Edward Said Professor of Arab Studies at Columbia University since 2003. Khalidi is editor of the Journal of Palestine Studies, and he is former President of the Middle East Studies Association, and an advisor to the Palestinian delegation to the Madrid and Washington Arab-Israeli peace negotiations from October 1991 until June 1993.

CONTACT: rashid.khalidi@theglobalexperts.org

LocationL North America

Languages: Arabic; English

Ramzi Khoury is a special advisor to Mahmoud Abbas, president of the Palestinian Authority. He is based in Ramallah, West Bank. Previously, he has worked as a strategic communications consultant, journalist and columnist. He is also the CEO of Strategy Falcons LLC, an Arab strategic communications company based in Dubai, with offices throughout the region.

CONTACT: ramzi.khoury@theglobalexperts.org

Location: Middle East

Languages: Arabic; English

Mikaïl Barah, Ph.D. is a Senior Fellow on Middle Eastern issues at IRIS, a Paris-based Institute for International and Strategic Relations. He holds a Ph.D. in Political Science. Dr. Barah is also a lecturer at the Institute for European Studies of the Université Paris-VIII. He is a member of the Editorial boards of French academic journals Revue internationale et stratégique (RIS) and Confluences Méditerranée.

CONTACT: mikail.barah@theglobalexperts.org

Location: West Europe

Languages: Arabic; English; French

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