Main Library Designated as UN Depository Library

Yusuf Ahmed Alghanim Main Library at Birzeit University was designated on June 16, 2016 a United Nations depository library, making it part of an international network of more than 360 depository libraries in over 136 countries.

Birzeit’s main library now has free, full and open access to the digital deposits of UN publications. The Dag Hammarskjöld Library of the United Nations Secretariat and the Publication Board agreed to partner with the library in May 2016.

Vice President for Academic Affairs Henry Giacaman expressed the university’s pleasure that is was chosen to serve as one of the depository libraries in the system of the UN. “Academic libraries have traditionally been seen as the heart of the university’s mission of education. Therefore, not only we are committed to promoting and preserving the UN’s valuable materials, but we also strive to advance scholarship and teaching by committing ourselves to the creation, application, preservation and dissemination of knowledge.”

Outreach Division director at the United Nations’ Department of Public information Maher Nasser, presented a brief sketch of the UN depository library system, including the criteria for designating depository libraries. Nasser explained that the concept of the depository libraries seeks to make the United Nation’s documents and publications available throughout the world.

Acting head of the main library’s User Services Section Mahmoud Murrar explained the strategic importance of this designation, saying that Birzeit’s main library is open to the public and provides remote service to users. “UN publications are a rich source of information for scholars, students and those who have general interest in international relations, human rights, international law and economics and other branches.”

The Dag Hammarskjöld Library at United Nations Headquarters in New York, which is part of the Department of Public Information, has arranged since 1946 for the distribution of United Nations documents and publications to users around the world through its depository library system.