Occupied Palestine Territories
The Seventh Special Session of the Governing Coun- cil of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)/Global Ministerial Environment Forum held in February 2002, adopted unanimously a decision concerning the environmental situation in the Occupied Palestin- ian Territories (GCSS. VII/7). The Governing Council requested UNEP to carry out a desk study as a first step in the implementation of this decision, outlining the state of the environment and identifying the major areas of environmental damage requiring attention. One month later, during the preparatory ministerial segment of the Arab League’s 14th session at the summit level in Beirut in March 2002, Klaus Töpfer, UNEP’s Executive Director, presented the decision in his address to the ministers of finance and economy. He invited all the member States of the Arab League to cooperate with UNEP in working towards achieving a scientifically solid desk study with a forward-looking approach. In July 2002, during his visit to the area, the UNEP Executive Director agreed with both Israel and the Pales- tinian Authority on the framework for the desk study. Both sides indicated their willingness to cooperate with UNEP, and emphasised that urgent attention and action were required to address environmental needs in the region.