GENERAL R EVIEW OF THE LEGAL ACTIVITIES OF THE
UNITEDNATIONS AND RELATED
INTERGOVE RNMEN TAL ORGA NIZATIONS
1. Membership of the UnitedNations
As of 31 December 2012, the number of Member States of the United Nations
remained at 193.
On 23 September 2011, acting in accordance with r ule 135 of the rules of procedure
of the General Assembly and r ule 59 of the provisional rules of procedure of the Secu-
rity Council, t he Secretary-General circ ulated an application of Palestine for admis sion to
membership in the UnitedNations, contained in a letter received on 23 September 2011
from its President, Mahmoud Abbas.1 By resolution 67/19 of 29 November 2012, the Gen-
eral Assembly took note of the report of t he Security Council Committee on t he Admis-
sion of New Members of 11 November 20112 in which the Chair of the Comm ittee stated,
inter alia, that the Comm ittee was unable to make a u nanimous recommendation to the
Security Council concerning the application of Palestine for admission to membership
in the UnitedNations. In the same resolution, the General Assembly decided to accord
to Palestine non-member observer State status in the UnitedNations, w ithout prejudice
to the acquired rights , privileges and role of the Pa lestine Liberation Organization in t he
UnitedNations as the representative of the Palestinia n people, in accordance with the
relevant resolutions and practice. e Gener al Assembly further requested the Se cretary-
General to take t he necessary measures to implement resolution 67/19 and to report to the
General Assembly wit hin three months of its adoption on progress made in this rega rd.
1 Applicat ion of Palestine for admi ssion to membership in the UnitedNations: Note by t he Secre-
tary-Gener al of 23 September 2011 (A/66/371—S/2011/592).
2 Report of the Committee on the Ad mission of New Members concer ning the applicat ion of
Palestine for ad mission to membership in the UnitedNat ions (S/2011/705).
2. Peace and Security
(a) Peacekeeping missions and operations3
(i) Peacekeeping missions and operations established in 2012
Syrian Arab Republic
In accordance with Gener al Assembly resolution 66/253 of 16 February 2012, the for-
mer Secretary-Genera l of the UnitedNations, Mr. Ko Annan, was appointed Joint Special
Envoy of the UnitedNations and the Leag ue of Arab States in relation to the situation in
the Syrian Ar ab Republic.4 On 21 March 2012, the President of the Secur ity Council wel-
comed the appointment of Mr. Annan as Joint Specia l Envoy and expressed the Council’s
support for an initia l six-point proposal outlined by the Joint Special Envoy and submit ted
to the Syrian authorit ies.5 In resolution 2042 (2012) of 14 April 2012, the Council reaf-
rmed its support for the six-point proposal, a nnexed to the resolution, and called for the
urgent, comprehensive and immediate implementation of al l its elements.
On 21 April 2012, the Security Council adopted resolution 2043 (2012) in which it
decided to establish for an initial period of 90 days the UnitedNations Supervision Mis-
sion in Syria (UNSMIS),6 under the comma nd of a Chief Militar y Observer, comprising
an initial deployment of up to 300 unarmed military observers as well as an appropriate
civilian c omponent as required to full its mandate. It f urther decided that the mand ate of
UNSMIS should be to monitor a cessation of arme d violence in all its forms by all part ies
and to monitor and support the fu ll implementation of the six-point proposal of the Joint
In resolution 2059 (2012) of 20 July 2012, the Council dec ided to renew the mandate
of UNSMIS for a nal period of 30 days , taking into consideration the recommendations
of the Secretar y-General to recongure the mis sion and the operational implications of the
increasingly da ngerous security situation in Syria .7 e Council further ex pressed its will-
ingness to renew the mandate of U NSMIS thereaer only in the event that the Secret ary-
General reported and t he Security Council conrmed the cessation of the use of heavy
weapons and a reduction in the level of violence by al l sides sucient to allow UNSMIS to
implement its mandate.
In a letter dated 10 August 2012 from the Secret ary-General addressed to the Pre sident
of the Security C ouncil,8 the Secretary-General i nformed the Council that the cessation of
the use of heavy weapons and a reduct ion in violence by all sides sucient to allow UNSMI S
to implement its mandate, as set out in resolution 2059 (2012), had not been achieved and,
therefore, UNSMIS mandate ca me to an end at midnight on 19 August 2012. e Secretary-
3 e missions a nd operations are listed i n chronological order as per t heir date of establishm ent.
4 SG/S M/14 124 .
5 Statement by the Pre sident of the Security Cou ncil of 21 March 2012 (S/PRST/2012/6).
6 For more infor mation about UNSMIS, s ee http://www.un.org/en/pea cekeeping/mission s/
unsmis/ and repor t of the Secretary-General on t he implementation of Secu rity Council re solution
204 3 (2012) (S/2 012/523).
7 See report of t he Secretary-Gener al on the implementation of Secur ity Council resolution 20 43
(2012) (S/ 2012/523).
8 S/201 2/618.
General further informed the Council that he intended to work in the immediate future
towards establishing a n eective and exible United Nations presence in Syria that would
support the Organization’s eorts with the parties to end hosti lities and, where possible
and agreed, to support t he Syrians in ta king the steps they identify towards a negotiated
and inclusive political se ttlement. e Council reiterated its support for the mission of good
oces of the Secretar y-General and for the work of the Joint Special Representative th rough
a letter dated 17 August 2012 from the President of the Securit y Council addressed to t he
In light of Mr. Annan’s decision to step down as Joint Special Envoy at the end of
August 2012, Mr. Lakhdar Brahimi was appointed Joint Special Representative of the
UnitedNations and the League of A rab States for Syria on 17 August 2012.10
(ii) Changes in the mandate and/or extensions of time limits of ongoing
peacekeeping operations or missions in 2012
a. Cypr us
e UnitedNations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP) was established by
Security Council resolution 186 (1964) of 4 March 1964.11 e Securit y Council decided
by resolution 2058 (2012) of 19 July 2012 to extend the mandate of UNFICYP for a f urther
period ending 31 January 2013.
b. Syrian Arab Republic a nd Israel
e UnitedNations Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF) was established by
Security Cou ncil resolution 350 (1974) of 31 March 1974.12 e Security Cou ncil renewed
the mandate of UNDOF by resolutions 2052 (2012) of 27 June 2012 and 2084 (2012) of
19 December 2012, until 31 December 2012 and 30 June 2013, respectively. e Security
Council fur ther expressed grave concern at all violations of the 1974 Disengagement of
Forces Agreement,13 including the presence of the Syr ian Arab Armed Forces and unau-
thorized mi litary equipment inside the Area of Separation, and st ressed the obligation of
both parties to s crupulously and fully respect t he terms of the Agreement.
9 S/2012 /654 .
10 SG/S M/14 471.
11 For more information about UNFICY P, see http://www.uncy p.org and http://www.un.org/
en/peacekeeping /missions/uncyp/. See al so the report of the Secre tary-General on t he UnitedNations
operation in Cy prus covering developments from 21 November 2011 to 20 June 2012 (S/2012/507).
12 For more infor mation about UNDOF, see http://ww w.un.org/en/peacekeeping /missions/undof
and the report s of the Secretary-Gene ral on the UnitedNations Disengage ment Observer Force for the
period from 1 Janua ry to 30 June 2012 and for the period from 1 Ju ly to 31 December 2012 (S/2012/403
and S/2012/897, respectively).