04/06/2003
Press Release
GA/AB/3570



Fifty-seventh General Assembly

Fifth Committee (Resumed)

56th  Meeting (PM)


BUDGET COMMITTEE APPROVES $2.17 BILLION FOR 2003/2004 PEACEKEEPING,

AS IT CONCLUDES RESUMED SESSION


The Fifth Committee (Administrative and Budgetary) this afternoon approved some $2.17 billion gross to finance 11 active peacekeeping missions for 2003/2004, as it concluded its second resumed session.  That amount includes some

$70.29 million for the maintenance of peacekeeping support account (plus

$33.2 million to be applied from the Reserve Fund), and some $21.51 million for the United Nations Logistics Base (UNLB) in Brindisi, Italy.


Compared with the appropriation of some $2.6 billion for the current (2002/2003) period, the new peacekeeping budget represents a reduction of some $430 million, mostly due to the closing of the United Nations Mission in Bosnia and Herzegovina (UNMIBH) and downsizing of the Organization’s operations in Kosovo, East Timor, Sierra Leone and Lebanon.


As the financial year of peacekeeping operations runs from 1 July to

30 June, the Committee customarily devotes its late spring session to assessing their budgetary and administrative needs.  Thus, most of the 33 draft resolutions and decisions approved today address various aspects of peacekeeping, including budgets of individual missions, disposition of the assets of missions in liquidation, and strategic deployment stocks.


The Committee had two votes on the draft resolution on the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL), which was introduced by the “Group of 77” developing countries and China last week.  The text itself was adopted by a vote of 129 in favour to 2 against (Israel, United States), with no abstentions (see Annex II).


Prior to the vote on the draft as a whole, the Committee decided to retain in the text the fourth preambular paragraph and operative paragraphs 3, 4 and 14 by 80 in favour to 2 against (Israel, United States), with 47 abstentions (see Annex I). Those paragraphs refer to several previous General Assembly resolutions, which call for Israel to pay some $1.12 million for the damage resulting from a 1996 incident at Qana, Lebanon.


All other drafts were approved without a vote.  For the 2003/2004 budget cycle, the Committee approved the following amounts for 10 individual missions:


Mission     Amount              Support Account      UNLB          Total

                              (in million dollars)


UNOMIG      30.71                    1.06           0.32            32.1

UNMIK       315.52                  10.89            3.33          329.74

UNFICYP     43.80                    1.51            0.46           45.77

UNDOF       40.01                    1.38            0.42           41.81

UNIFIL      90.00                    3.11            0.95           94.06

UNMISET     185.00                    6.38            1.95          193.34

MINURSO     41.53                    1.43            0.44           43.40

UNAMSIL     520.05                  17.95            5.49          543.49

MONUC       582.00                  20.08            6.14          608.23

UNMEE       188.40                   6.50            1.99          196.89


TOTAL    2,037.02                  70.29           21.51        2,128.82


In addition, the Secretary-General would be authorized to enter into commitments of up to $12 million for the financing of the United Nations Iraq-Kuwait Observation Mission (UNIKOM) until the end of October.


The 11 active missions are:  United Nations Observer Mission in Georgia (UNOMIG); United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK); United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP); United Nations Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF); United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL); United Nations Mission of Support in East Timor (UNMISET); United Nations Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO); United Nations Mission in Sierra Leone (UNAMSIL); United Nations Organization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUC); United Nations Mission in Ethiopia and Eritrea (UNMEE); and UNIKOM.


The Committee also made recommendations on the disposal of the assets of several closed missions, including those in Angola, Tajikistan, Liberia, Rwanda and the Central African Republic.


One of the most important aspects of the United Nations peacekeeping budget is the financing of the support account, which has been established in order to allow the Secretariat to plan and deploy peacekeeping operations in a coordinated manner.  The account is financed through assessments on all active missions, according to their size, as is Logistics Base.


By the draft resolution approved today, the Assembly, recognizing the importance of the Organization’s ability to respond quickly to conflict situations and deploy peacekeeping operations within 30 to 90 days upon their authorization by the Security Council, would approve the support account requirements for 2003/2004 in the amount of some $70.29 million, including 702 continuing posts. 


The Secretary-General would be requested to review the level of the support account, on a regular basis, taking into consideration the number, size and complexity of peacekeeping operations.  At the same time, the Board of Auditors would be invited to review the implementation of the recommendations of the Special Committee for Peacekeeping Operations and the Panel on United Nations Peace Operations, to gauge the effects of management reform measures. 


Taking into account the ongoing evaluation of recent restructuring of the Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO), the Assembly would decide to review the posts approved in its several recent resolutions.  In that context, it would also decide to review the establishment and the level of the gender adviser post within the DPKO.


To achieve effective oversight over peacekeeping operations, the Assembly would approve the establishment of eight posts for the Investigations Division of the Office of Internal Oversight Services (OIOS), to be divided evenly between regional hubs in Vienna and Nairobi.  In order to undertake oversight over military aspects of peacekeeping, a P-4 post in the Monitoring, Evaluation and Consulting Division would be established on a trial basis.  Also approved would be the transfer to the support account of 27 resident auditors, who are currently funded under individual operations’ budgets.


Acting on the new concept of strategic deployment stocks, which was adopted last year in order to enhance the Organization’s rapid deployment capacity, the Committee recommended that the Assembly extend to 30 June 2004 the validity period of the resources in the amount of $141.55 million, which it approved in resolution 56/292.  Creation of such stocks would allow the Organization to deploy one complex mission per year.  It also involves expansion of the role of the UNLB as an operational arm for those stocks, a training and conference centre, and a support base for air operations.


By another draft, the Assembly would request the Secretary-General, upon full establishment of the strategic deployment stocks and the pre-mandated commitment authority, to review the level of the Peacekeeping Reserve Fund.  It would also decide to apply some $33.25 million, representing the amount in excess of the authorized level of $150 million for the Reserve Fund, to the support account for 2003/2004. 


In a related text, approving the cost estimate of some $22.21 million for the United Nations Logistics Base for 2003/2004, the Assembly would request the Secretary-General to consider the merits of relocating all Logistics Division resources to Brindisi, as well as those related to communications and information technology services for peacekeeping.


Acting on the processing of reimbursements to troop- and equipment-contributing countries, the Committee recommended minimizing delays in that respect, recognizing that uncertainty in reimbursements adversely affected their ability to participate in peacekeeping operations.  To streamline processing of claims, the Secretary-General would be requested to make suggestions for modifications to the current reporting cycle to the Working Group on Reimbursement of Contingent-owned Equipment at its meeting in February 2004.  On the basis of the Working Group’s recommendations, he would be requested to submit a comprehensive report on issues requiring legislative action by the Assembly.


By a six-part draft resolution on the administrative and budgetary aspects of peacekeeping financing, the Committee also made recommendations to the Assembly on such issues as results-based budgeting; communication and information technology; training; recruitment; travel; and procurement. 


In other action today, the Committee recommended that the Assembly:


-- Request a report on the proposed methodology for determining reimbursement to troop-contributing States, to be presented during its fifty-ninth session;


-- Accept the audited financial statements on the United Nations peacekeeping operations for 2001/2002;


-- Request a follow-up audit to the Oversight Office report related to the DPKO policies and procedures for recruiting international civilian staff for field missions;


-- Request that reports on the standards of accommodation for air travel be now presented on a biennial, instead of annual, basis, as well as information on the use of gratis personnel;


-- Decide that, in the future, information on death and disability benefits would be included in the overview of the general report on peacekeeping operations;


-- Request the Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions (ACABQ) to submit proposals to formalize procedures related to the salary and retirement allowance/pensionable remuneration of the Secretary-General and the Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP);


-- Approve the release of $250,000 set aside in the contingency fund for the International Research and Training Institute for the Advancement of Women (INSTRAW) to continue its core activities in 2003. 


-- Concur with the proposed reimbursable amounts for write-off of contingent-owned equipment at liquidated missions in order to certify claims by  30 June 2003;


-- Take note of the OIOS report on the management review of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and decide to revert to the administration and management of the Office in the context of its consideration of the proposed programme budget for 2004/2005; and


-- Take note of the reports on budget outline for 2004/2005 for the International Trade Centre (ITC) United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD)/World Trade Organization (WTO).


Finally, the Committee decided to defer its consideration of several agenda items to the fifty-eighth session, including reports on the implementation of the field assets control system; the audit of the establishment and management of mission subsistence rates; reform of the field service category of personnel; and status of recommendations on mission liquidation activities. 


Also deferred to the second part of resumed fifty-eighth session was the proposal related to consolidation of peacekeeping financing. The Secretary-General would be requested to provide a comprehensive report on the matter, taking into account the views expressed and questions raised by Member States, including a simulation of the proposed options.


Action on Drafts


The Committee first approved, without a vote, a draft resolution on financial reports and audited financial statements and reports of the Board of Auditors (document A/C.5/57/L.84).  The draft was introduced by the Vice-Chairman of the Committee, BOGDAN DRAGULESCU (Romania), who had conducted informal consultations on the matter.  By the text, the Assembly would accept the audited financial statements on the United Nations peacekeeping operations for the period from 1 July 2001 to 30 June 2002.  Commending the Board of Auditors for the quality of its report, it would take note of and endorse the Board of Auditor’s recommendations, as well as those of the Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions (ACABQ).


The Committee then took up a draft resolution on gratis personnel provided by governments and other entities (document A/C.5/57/L.65).  Mr. Dragulescu introduced the text, by the terms of which the Assembly would take note of the Secretary-General’s annual report on such personnel, covering the period from

1 January to 31 December 2002, as well as the related ACABQ report.  It would request the Secretary-General to provide, in subsequent reports and on a biennial basis, information on the use of gratis personnel, including their nationality, duration of service, department where employed and functions performed.


The Committee approved the draft resolution without a vote.


Programme Budget for Biennium 2002-2003


Under this agenda item, the Committee had before it a draft decision on the standards of accommodation for air travel (document A/C.5/57/L.64).  Following informal consultations, OLEKSII IVASCHENKO (Ukraine) introduced the text, by the terms of which the Assembly would decide to take note of the related reports of the Secretary-General and the ACABQ and request the Secretary-General to report on the matter on a biennial basis.


Acting without a vote, the Committee approved the draft decision.


Next before the Committee was a draft resolution on the salary and retirement allowance of the Secretary-General and the salary and pensionable remuneration of the Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) (document A/C.5/57/L.74).  The Committee approved the draft, which was introduced by Vice-Chairman of the Committee, GUILLERMO KENDALL (Argentina), following informal consultations, without a vote.


According to the text, the Assembly would concur with the ACABQ’s recommendations concerning the salary and retirement allowance of the Secretary-General, as well as with the recommendation of the Advisory Committee on the salary and pensionable remuneration of the UNDP Administrator.  It would also approve the amendment to paragraph 1 of annex I of the United Nations Staff Regulations, with effect from 1 January 2003.  The ACABQ would be requested to submit proposals to the Assembly at its fifty-eighth session, with a view to formalizing conditions and procedures related to the salary and retirement allowance of the Secretary-General and the salary and pensionable remuneration of the UNDP Administrator.

Vice-Chairman of the Committee MICHEL TILEMANS (Belgium) then introduced a draft resolution on the financial situation of the International Research and Training Institute for the Advancement of Women (INSTRAW) (document A/C.5/57/L.88), by the terms of which the Assembly would approve the release of the amount of $250,000 that was set aside in the contingency fund for the current biennium as the additional provision to the Institute to continue its core activities in 2003.  At the same time, the Assembly would stress that the contingency fund is not intended to be used as a recurring source of programme funding.  The Secretary-General would be requested to report to the fifty-eighth session on the financial situation of the Institute.


Expressing regret that the nomination of the Director for INSTRAW had not yet taken place, impairing the capacity of the Institute to function properly, the Assembly would further urge the Secretary-General to appoint immediately a Director at the D-2 level and inform the Working Group on the Future Operations of INSTRAW of the designation of the nominee.  One year after the appointment of the Director, the Institute would be requested to report on its work programme and the implementation of the recommendations of the Office of Internal Oversight Services contained in its report on the audit of the Institute.


Commenting on the draft, the representative of the United States said that his delegation had acted in the spirit of compromise and good will during negotiations on the text and would not stand in the way of its adoption, although the United States decided to dissociate from the consensus.  He wanted to remind the Committee, however, that in 2001 the Committee had agreed to provide a $600,000 subvention to INSTRAW.  In 2002, an amount of $250,000 had been given to the Institute.  Now, another $250,000 would be released from the contingency fund to allow the Institute to be effective.  Time had come for results.  He hoped that the Director of the Institute would be appointed in the near future and would be able to draw resources for the Institute.  He hoped no further funds would be requested from the contingency fund.


The text was then adopted without a vote.


Speaking after the approval of the draft, the representative of Morocco, on behalf of the “Group of 77” developing countries and China, welcomed the achieved consensus on the draft and urged the Secretary-General to appoint immediately a Director at the D-2 level for INSTRAW headquarters in the Dominican Republic.  She said the Group attached great importance to the proper functioning of INSTRAW and believed that a permanent solution should be found to the financial problem of the institution.  She thanked those Member States that had made pledges or contributed financially to the Institute and appealed to other Member States to do likewise.


The representative of Peru, on behalf of the Rio Group, agreed with the position of the Group of 77 and China and said that due importance should be attached to the gender issues.  The Rio Group wanted to reiterate the urgent need for an appointment of a Director for the Institute.  She hoped that such an appointment would allow INSTRAW to proceed with the revitalization of the Institute and continuation of its important work for the advancement of women.


The representative of the Dominican Republic, associating himself with statements made on behalf of the Group of 77 and the Rio Group, said he was pleased at the consensus in approving the draft resolution.  With the release of the second $250,000 pursuant to recommendations of the Working Group and the imminent appointment of the Director, he hoped that INSTRAW would develop its activities with a view to revitalization.  One more step had been taken in the right direction to make resources available to institutions that carried out commendable work for the developing world.  He urged voluntary contributions for revitalization of the Institute.


The Committee then turned to another draft resolution (document A/C.5/57/L.90), which was also approved without a vote.  By the text, the Assembly would take note of the proposed budget outline for 2004/2005 for the International Trade Centre (ITC) United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD)/World Trade Organization (WTO) and request the Secretary-General to provide for documentary language service to the Joint Advisory Group (JAG) of the Centre in Arabic and Chinese within the proposed programme budget to be submitted for the biennium.  Also by the text, the Assembly would request the Secretary-General to initiate consultations with the ITC and WTO for a joint review of the administrative arrangements for the ITC and reaffirm paragraph 30 of its resolution 56/253, which, in turn, reaffirms the Regulations and Rules Governing Programme Planning, the Programme Aspects of the Budget, the Monitoring of Implementation and the Methods of Evaluation.  It also reaffirms that the application of rule 105.6(a) should continue to reflect the understanding that approval of the medium-term plan and the programme budget constitute the reaffirmation of the mandate reflected therein.


The draft was introduced by Mr. DRAGULESCU (Romania).


Speaking after approval of the text, the representative of Cuba said that her delegation’s acceptance of the reference to regulation 105.6(a) did not prejudice any position taken in reference to other matters.  The reference to that rule affected only 50 per cent of the ITC budget. That reference did not prejudice any subsequent decision on the 50 per cent financed by the WTO.  It was important to realize that the text was dealing with an independent organization with an independent set of rules.  It was not in the Organization’s power to impose its rules on it.


Office of Internal Oversight Services


      By the terms of a draft resolution contained in document A/C.5/57/L.94, which was introduced by COLLEN V. KELAPILE (Botswana), the Assembly would take note of the report of the Office of Internal Oversight Services (OIOS) on the management review of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and request the Secretary-General to report on the matter at its fifty-eighth session.


It would also decide to revert to the issue of administration and management of the Office of the High Commissioner in the context of its consideration of the proposed programme budget for 2004/2005, as well as the issues relevant to the functioning of the Office addressed in its resolution 57/300, in the context of the procedures its establishes for consideration of the progress report on the implementation of the reform measures considered in that resolution.


The text was approved without a vote.

The representative of Cuba, explaining her position on the text, said that under paragraphs 2 and 3 it was fundamental that there be an intergovernmental debate on the report of the Secretary-General as requested, including the recommendations of the OIOS.  She expressed reservations on those recommendations, which went beyond the OIOS mandate.  She reserved specific views on the recommendations until the intergovernmental review, as scheduled in paragraph 3.


Financing of United Nations Peacekeeping Operations


Mr. TILEMANS (Belgium) then introduced the draft resolution on the administrative and budgetary aspects of the financing of United Nations peacekeeping operations (document A/C.5/57/L.79), which addresses such issues as results-based budgeting; communication and information technology; training; recruitment; travel; and procurement.


By the terms of the text, the Assembly would welcome the Secretary-General’s efforts to implement the results-based budgeting format and the timely presentation of the proposed peacekeeping budgets for 2003/2004.  When applying the results-based budgeting to peacekeeping financing, it would request the Secretary-General to take into account the specific characteristics and mandates of each mission.  It would also reiterate that the format of budget presentation should be in accordance with the mandates of the General Assembly and reaffirm that the budget documentation should contain all information needed for Member States to reach well-informed decisions, including full justification of required resources.


The Secretary-General would also be requested to develop further the link between mission objectives and resources required for 2004/2005.  At the sixtieth resumed session, the Joint Inspection Unit (JIU) would be requested to present an evaluation of the implementation of results-based budgeting in peacekeeping operations.


The Assembly would note with concern the observations of the ACABQ on the expansion of communication and information technology programmes in some peacekeeping missions undergoing downsizing and its caution against an apparent tendency to acquire the most up-to-date communications and data processing equipment, which might not be appropriate to the practical needs of the missions.  It would request the Secretary-General to submit a comprehensive report on the functional requirements of field missions in that respect and to ensure that such a report is consistent with the direction of the Organization’s broader information and communications technology strategy.


On training, the Secretary-General would be requested to ensure that investments in training are need-based, aimed at improving efficiency and performance and congruent with the career development of staff.  Another request would be to refine the management policy of training and related Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO) and missions’ travel costs.


Noting with concern the continuing delays in the recruitment of personnel in the DPKO, the Assembly would request the Secretary-General to encourage greater use of national staff, whenever possible and cost-effective, and urge him to expedite recruitment for field missions.  It would also stress that any reclassification of posts should be consistent with relevant resolutions and United Nations rules and regulations.  Regarding travel, the Assembly would reiterate that future resource requests should be adequately justified, including how such travel will help achieve a measurable result in fulfilling stated objectives.


On procurement and contract management, the Secretary-General would be requested to submit a comprehensive report to the fifty-eighth resumed session, containing specific proposals addressing any possible conflict of interest that might arise in that area concerning United Nations staff members associated with the procurement cycle.  According to the text, such proposals should address the feasibility of establishing a code of ethics, a declaration of independence and provisions to ensure confidentiality of information associated with staff members’ functions.


      Speaking before action on the text, the representative of the United Statesannounced that of 1 May his country had paid $134 million towards assessments totalling $139 million, 96.6 per cent of his country’s peacekeeping assessments. The United States had also paid an additional $227 million towards outstanding assessments totalling $361 million from prior years.


The text was approved without a vote.


Speaking in explanation, the representative of Cuba reiterated her understanding about operative paragraph 5 that the Secretariat would continue its current format for budget reports, providing all information.  The Member States must know what the resources were being used for, she said.


The representative of Nigeria said it was her understanding that the resolution would cover broad policy issues and not specific financial issues for individual missions.  Regarding the section on recruitment, she expressed appreciation to the Vice-Chairman and delegates for support regarding dealing with issues of high vacancy rates.  Paragraph 16 noted the continuing delays in recruitment in the DPKO and its impact on peacekeeping operations, particularly in Africa.  She hoped that, through adoption of the draft, vacancy rates would be brought down substantially.


Also before the Committee was a draft resolution on the management of contingent-owned equipment arrangements (document A/C.5/57/L.71).  HAILE SELASSIE GETACHEW (Ethiopia) introduced the text, by the terms of which the Assembly would take note of the Secretary-General’s report, and the ACABQ’s recommendations in its related report.  It would affirm the importance of conducting peacekeeping operations with maximum efficiency and the need to minimize delays in processing reimbursements to troop- and equipment-contributing countries.


Recognizing that delay and uncertainty in reimbursements to troop-contributing countries of troop and contingent-owned-equipment costs adversely affected the ability of troop-contributing countries to participate in United Nations peacekeeping operations, the Assembly would request the Secretary-General to submit a comprehensive report taking into account the ACABQ’s observations, and make suggestions for any modification to the current reporting cycle to the Working Group on Reimbursement of Contingent-owned Equipment at its forthcoming meeting in February 2004.


It would also request the Secretary-General to submit a comprehensive report on the basis of the Working Group’s recommendations on issues requiring legislative action by the Assembly.


The Committee approved the draft without a vote.


A draft resolution on the status of implementation of the strategic deployment stocks (document A/C.5/57/L.72), introduced by Mr. KENDALL (Argentina), would have the Assembly take note of the Secretary-General’s report and endorse the ACABQ’s recommendations, requesting the Secretary-General to ensure their full implementation.


[In its report (document A/57/772/Add.9), the ACABQ notes as of February 2003, obligations, disbursements and “pre-encumbrances” -- requisitions that are being processed prior to raising obligations -- related to strategic deployment stocks amounted to some $115.8 million.  Of that amount, only relatively small amounts reflect actual disbursements and obligations.  In that regard, it expresses concern that the low level of disbursements and obligations is indicative of slow progress in the implementation of the strategic deployment stocks.]


Also by the draft, the Assembly would decide to extend the validity period in respect of the resources approved in its resolution 56/292 to 30 June 2004.  The Secretary-General would also be requested to submit separate reports on the implementation of strategic deployment stocks and on the budget and performance of the United Nations Logistics Base (UNLB).


Acting without a vote, the Committee approved the draft resolution.


      The Committee then turned to a draft resolution on death and disability benefits (document A/C.5/57/L.73).  Mr. GETACHEW (Ethiopia) introduced the text, by the terms of which the Assembly would take note of the Secretary-General’s report and decide that, in future, information on death and disability benefits be included in the overview of the general report on peacekeeping operations.


The draft was approved without a vote.


The Committee then turned to a draft resolution on the Peacekeeping Reserve Fund (document A/C.5/57/L.76), which was introduced by Mr. TILEMANS (Belgium).  By the terms of the draft, the Assembly would take note of the status of contributions to the Fund as of 31 December 2002.  It would endorse the ACABQ’s recommendation thereon, and request the Secretary-General to ensure its full implementation.  It would decide to apply some $33.25 million, representing the amount in excess of the authorized level of $150 million for the Peacekeeping Reserve Fund, to the requirements of the support account for peacekeeping operations for the period from 1 July 2003 to 30 June 2004.  The Assembly would also request the Secretary-General, consequent upon the full establishment of the strategic deployment stocks and the pre-mandate commitment authority, to review the level of the Fund and to report thereon at the second part of its fifty-eighth session.


It approved the text without a vote.


The Committee next took up a draft decision on the write-off of contingent-owned equipment at liquidated missions (document A/C.5/57/L.77).  Mr. GETACHEW (Ethiopia) introduced the text, by the terms of which the Assembly, having considered the note by the Secretary-General and the related report of the ACABQ, would concur with the Secretariat’s request.  [In the Secretary-General’s note, the Secretariat requested Member States to concur with proposed reimbursable amounts in order to certify claims by 30 June 2003.]


Acting without a vote, the Committee approved the draft decision.


As the Committee turned to the peacekeeping support account, Mr. TILEMANS (Belgium) then introduced a draft resolution contained in document A/C.5/57/L.85.  By the text, the Assembly would approve the support account requirements for 2003/2004 in the amount of $70.29 million, including 702 continuing posts, deciding to maintain for another budget period the current funding mechanism for the account.  It would also take note of the Secretary-General’s report on the financial performance of the support account for 2001/2002.


Recognizing the importance of the United Nations being able to respond to conflict situations and rapidly deploy peacekeeping operations within 30 to

90 days upon adoption of relevant Security Council resolutions, the Assembly would also recognize that adequate support should be provided for all phases of peacekeeping, including liquidation and termination of missions.


The Secretary-General would be requested to review the level of the support account, on a regular basis, taking into consideration the number, size and complexity of peacekeeping operations.  The Board of Auditors would be requested to review the implementation of the recommendations of the Special Committee for Peacekeeping Operations and the Panel on United Nations Peace Operations, to gauge the effects of management reform measures. The Assembly would also urge the Secretary-General to continue to identify measures to increase the productivity and efficiency of the support account and affirm the need for both adequate funding for backstopping of peacekeeping operations and full justification for such funding in budget submissions.


Further, the Assembly would reaffirm the need to ensure delegation of authority to the Department of Peacekeeping Operations and field missions in strict compliance with relevant decisions, resolutions, rules and procedures and reaffirm that any delegation of authority requires full accountability of programme managers.  It would request the Secretary-General to submit a comprehensive report on measures in this regard and the criteria used for the recruitment of support accounts posts, bearing in mind that the system of desirable ranges does not currently apply to support account posts.


Turning to staff requirements, the Assembly would regret that the D-2 post for Change Management is still vacant and urge the Secretary-General to fill it as soon as possible.  It would also decide to review at its resumed fifty-eighth session the existing posts approved in several resolutions, including 55/238, 56/231 and 56/293, in order to consider their justification, taking into account the ongoing evaluation by the OIOS of the recent restructuring of the Peacekeeping Department.


Among the OIOS posts to be funded through the support account, the Assembly would approve the establishment of eight posts for the Investigations Division, to be divided evenly between the regional hubs in Vienna and Nairobi, and decide to review them in the next support account budget.  Instead of approving the amount covering six months of consultancy services for three experts, the Assembly would establish, on a trial basis, a P-4 post in the Monitoring, Evaluation and Consulting Division to undertake oversight functions with regard to military aspects of peacekeeping.  It would also approve the transfer of 27 resident auditors to the support account from peacekeeping operations budgets, to be deployed as necessary, bearing in mind that whenever a mission’s mandate is adjusted or terminated, the number of audit posts should be adjusted or terminated accordingly.


Another human resources decision would involve the need to rejustify in subsequent budget submissions any support account posts that remain vacant and new posts that are not filled for 12 months from the date of their establishment.  The Assembly would also request the Secretary-General to include in the next support account report details on both upward and downward reclassification of posts, as well as the breakdown of appointments to reclassified posts in the previous two years and annual data thereafter.


On gender mainstreaming, the Assembly would decide that the gender adviser would be responsible for all relevant operational and related activities within individual mandates of various peacekeeping missions, as well as each mission’s operations in the field.  It would affirm that the Office of the Special Adviser on Gender Issues and Advancement of Women is the competent capacity for gender mainstreaming of the United Nations as a whole.  In this regard, the DPKO would be requested to establish an effective coordinating mechanism with the Special Adviser ensuring that all plans of action on gender mainstreaming in peacekeeping operations are consistent with existing mandates.


Stressing that creation of a gender adviser in the Best Practices Unit should not in itself lead to the establishment of a gender unit in the DPKO, the Assembly would also emphasize the importance of not duplicating functions and capacities that already exist elsewhere in the Secretariat.  It would decide to review the establishment and the level of the gender adviser post in the context of the above-mentioned review of recently authorized posts within the DPKO.


The Committee approved the text without a vote.


In explanation, the representative of Canada, also speaking on behalf of Australia and New Zealand, said he was pleased that the post of gender adviser had been established in the DPKO.  It was an important step forward.  However, the post merited a higher classification and he looked forward to further discussions in that regard.  The Office of the Special Adviser to the Secretary-General had the responsibility for gender mainstreaming throughout the Organization, however, as gender mainstreaming was the responsibility of the Secretary-General.  Nothing in the resolution should prevent the Secretary-General from proposing strengthening gender mainstreaming in other departments.


The representative of Algeria said that he appreciated the fact that consensus had been reached on the text.  Of particular interest was the decision related to the review of the support account posts approved in the last four resolutions on the matter, including today’s.  He hoped the Secretariat would include in its next report on the support account all the necessary information and justification to facilitate the review of all those posts.


The representative of South Africa said that, according to paragraph 18 of the draft, the Assembly would decide that support account posts that remained vacant for 12 months would require rejustification in future budget submissions. She agreed to that provision with the understanding that the arrangement would not be applied to regular budget, tribunal or individual missions.  In addition, the decision should not have a negative impact on the role of the United Nations in ensuring and maintaining peace and security around the world.  While the arrangement might ensure greater accountability by the Secretariat in filling the posts, it could also further exacerbate the high vacancy rate.


The representative of Egypt, referring to paragraphs 20 to 23, said that divided accountability should not be the policy in the Secretariat.  Capacities and functions should be streamlined and duplications avoided.  He, therefore, valued paragraph 22 regarding functions and capacities in the Secretariat.  Streamlining of management was very important to the work of the Organization.


The representative of Cuba associated herself with statements from the representatives of Algeria, South Africa and Egypt.


The representative of Trinidad and Tobago associated himself with those delegations that had said, regarding paragraphs 20 to 24, that the post deserved a higher classification.  He stressed the need for a single gender adviser in DPKO.


Mr. TILEMANS (Belgium) introduced the draft resolution on feasibility of consolidating the accounts of the various peacekeeping operations (document A/C.5/57/L.86), by which the Assembly would decide to defer consideration of that question to the second part of its resumed fifty-eighth session, and request the Secretary-General to provide a comprehensive report, taking into account the views expressed, questions raised and information requested by Member States, including a simulation of the options proposed.


The text was approved without a vote.


Speaking after approval of the text, the representative of Egypt said that his delegation wanted to reconfirm that the decision was one way of resolving the problems facing countries providing contingents for peacekeeping and were owed money by the United Nations.  The proposal would also help to resolve the budgetary problems, which led to delays in payment of assessed contributions.


The report to be provided by the Secretary-General should be clear and neutral, he said.  All the questions should be answered.  The purpose of the report, in fact, was to help Member States obtain the information needed to make important decisions.  It was necessary to explain the impact that the decision could make on the situation.  The ACABQ also should offer its observations on the impact of the proposal, so that a proper decision could be taken on the matter.


Approving, without a vote a draft resolution on the financing of the United Nations Logistics Base (UNLB) at Brindisi, Italy (document A/C.5/57/L.91), the Committee recommended that the Assembly take note of its financial performance for 2001/2002 and approve the cost estimate of some $22.21 million for 2003/2004.  By the terms of the text, the Assembly would decide to apply $702,800 in unencumbered balance and other income to the resources required for the upcoming financial period.


The Assembly would decide to continue its consideration of the UNLB financing during its fifty-eighth session.  When conducting a comprehensive examination of the merits of establishing in Brindisi a global procurement hub for all peacekeeping missions, the Secretary-General would be requested to address the merits of relocating all support account posts and non-post resources pertaining to the Logistics Division at Headquarters to Brindisi, as well as those related to communications and information technology services for peacekeeping.


The text was introduced by Mr. KENDALL (Argentina).


In connection with the review of the rates of reimbursement to the governments of troop-contributing States, the Committee had before it a draft resolution contained in document A/C.5/57/L.92.  By the text, the Assembly would request the Working Group on reform procedures for determining such reimbursement to consider the proposed methodology contained in the report of the Secretary-General on the matter and to report on the results of its review during the fifty-ninth session.


The text was adopted without a vote following an introduction by

Mr. GETACHEW (Ethiopia).


Also adopted without a vote was a draft resolution on the OIOS report on the audit of the policies and procedures of the DPKO for recruiting international civilian staff for field missions (document A/C.5/57/L.93), which was introduced by Mr. KELAPILE (Botswana).  By the terms of this text, the Assembly would take note of the report and request the Secretary-General to conduct, through the OIOS, a follow-up audit on such policies and procedures.  A report on the matter would be submitted to the Assembly at its resumed fifty-eighth session.


On the financing of the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF), the Committee had before it a draft resolution contained in document A/C.5/57/L.70, by the terms of which the Assembly would take note of the Secretary-General’s report on the financial performance of the Force in 2001/2002 and decide to appropriate some $41.81 million for the 2003/2004 financial period, inclusive of some $40.01 million for the maintenance of the Force, $1.38 million for the support account and $422,400 for the Logistics Base.


By the text, the Assembly would also take note of the status of contributions to the Force as at 31 March, including the outstanding amount of $25.7 million (some 2 per cent of the total assessed contributions).  It would note with concern that only 33 Member States have paid their assessed contributions in full and urge all others to ensure their payment.


The Assembly would further endorse the recommendations of the Advisory Committee and request the Secretary-General to ensure full compliance with them, without prejudice to a future discussion and decision on the proposal to create the post of Deputy Force Commander.  In connection with the request for three General Service staff posts, the Assembly would authorize the Secretary-General to fill them for a period not to exceed one year and invite him to resubmit it, with full justification, in connection with the budget proposal for 2004/2005.  Full justification would also be requested in connection with the proposed upgrade of the Chief Administration Officer for the mission.  The Assembly would decide to eliminate the vacant Field Service driver position in the Office of the Force Commander.


The draft also addresses the difficulties resulting from the relocation of the Force’s headquarters from Damascus to Camp Faouar, welcoming the fact that all outstanding issues have been satisfactorily resolved.  In this regard, the Assembly would emphasize the need for continuing the dialogue between staff and management, consistent with the existent mechanisms in all peacekeeping missions.


Introducing the text, Mr. KENDALL (Argentina) said that in operative paragraph 19, the correct number was $40.09 million, and in paragraph 21, $982,100.


The Director of the Peacekeeping Financing Division, CATHERINE POLLARD, explained that the use of the term “take note” in paragraph 9 of the draft, in the Secretariat’s interpretation, meant neither approval nor disapproval of the contents.  In its resolution 55/488, the General Assembly had reiterated that the terms “take note” and “notes” were neutral terms that constituted neither approval, nor disapproval.


The representative of Syria thanked the Secretariat for that clarification and asked that UNDOF be informed of the meaning of that term.


The text was then approved without a vote.


The Committee then took up the draft resolution on financing of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) (document A/C.5/57/L.78), which had been introduced by Morocco on behalf of the Group of 77 and China (see Press Release GA/AB/3569 of 29 May).  By the terms of the draft, the Assembly would take note of the financial performance report for the Force for the 2001-2003 period and would decide to appropriate to the special account for UNIFIL the amount of

$94.06 million for the period from 1 July 2003 to 30 June 2004, inclusive of

$90 million for the maintenance of the Force, $3.11 million for the support account for peacekeeping operations, and $950,200 for the Logistics Base.


As for the unencumbered balance and other income of some $20.86 million for the period ended on 30 June 2002, the respective shares of Member States that had fulfilled their financial obligations to the Force would be set off against their apportionment for 2003/2004.  The shares of those States that had not fulfilled their financial obligations to the Force would be set off against their outstanding obligations. T he increase of $398,800 in estimated staff assessment income in respect of the financial period ended 30 June 2002 shall be added to the credit from the unencumbered balance and other income.


Emphasizing that no peacekeeping mission shall be financed by borrowing funds from other active missions, the Assembly would also encourage the Secretary-General to continue to take additional measures to ensure the safety and security of all personnel participating in the Force under the auspices of the United Nations.


Further, the Assembly, expressing deep concern that Israel did not comply with several previous resolutions on the matter, the latest of which was resolution 56/214 of 21 December 2001, would stress that that country should strictly abide by them and would stress once again that Israel shall pay

$1.12 million from the incident at Qana on 18 April 1996.


The representative of the United States said that the fourth preambular paragraph and operative paragraphs 3, 4 and 14 of the text were not procedurally appropriate.  They violated the spirit of Article 17 of the Charter, which held that “expenses shall be a collective responsibility” of the Organization.


On the request of the United States, the Committee decided to hold a separate vote on those paragraphs.


The representative of Lebanon, on the point of order, asked the Secretariat to confirm that the amount in operative paragraph 14 was the total actual expenses resulting from the incident at Qana.


Ms. POLLARD confirmed that the amount, indeed, was the amount receivable from the Government of Israel.


The Committee then decided to retain the paragraphs in question by a vote of 80 in favour to 2 against (Israel, United States), with 47 abstentions (see

Annex I).


Speaking in explanation of vote after the vote, the representative of Israel said that his delegation had voted against the paragraphs.  Its position was well known and had been articulated in previous sessions.  He would refrain from repeating it.  However, he wanted to make clear that his delegation objected to introduction of political language in technical resolutions and singling out one country in a discriminatory manner.  Such resolutions harmed the credibility and reputation of the Committee.


The representative of Lebanon said that his country complied with the principle of collective responsibility, in particular, in accordance with the General Assembly resolution, which set the principles for the scale of assessments on peacekeeping.  But that did not contradict the responsibility of a State for its acts and their consequences, including compensation for damage.  According to Assembly resolution 55/235, where circumstances warranted, special consideration should be given to the situation of the States that were victims of events or actions that led to peacekeeping operations.  For that reason, compensation should be paid to the United Nations for the damage as a result of the attack in Qana.

The representative of Peru, also in explanation of the vote, said she had voted in favour of the paragraphs, but there were political elements in them that should be dealt with in a different context.


The representative of the United States requested a recorded vote on the draft resolution as a whole.


Voting on the draft as a whole, the Committee then approved the text by a vote of 129 in favour to 2 against (Israel, United States) with no abstentions (Annex II).


Speaking in explanation of vote after the vote, the representative of Australia (also on behalf of Canada and New Zealand) said that she was pleased with the fact that the adoption of the resolution had provided for the necessary mission financing.  She regretted, however, that once again the consensus had not been possible.  The text contained political elements inappropriate in a technical resolution.  For that reason, her delegation had abstained in the vote on the inclusion of the paragraphs.  She also noted that as of 31 March, only 23 Member States had fulfilled their financial obligations to UNIFIL and urged all States to pay their dues without delay.


The representative of Greece (speaking on behalf of the European Union) said that his delegation had abstained in the first vote, but voted positively on the draft on the whole.  The position of the European Union was well known and had been expressed on previous occasions.


The draft resolution on the financing of the United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (document A/C.5/57/L.67) would have the Assembly take note of the status of contributions to the Mission as of 31 March 2003, including contributions outstanding in the amount of some $105.2 million, representing about 7 per cent of total assessed contributions.  Noting with concern that only 33 Member States have paid their contributions in full, it would urge all Member States, in particular those in arrears, to ensure payment of their outstanding assessed contributions.


By further terms of the draft, the Assembly would take note of the Secretary-General’s financial performance report for the period from 1 July 2001 to 30 June 2002.  It would decide to appropriate to the special account for the Mission the amount of $329.74 million for the period from 1 July 2003 to 30 June 2004, inclusive of $315.52 million for the maintenance of the Mission,

$10.89 million for the peacekeeping support account and $3.33 million for the United Nations Logistics Base. 


DEWI SAVITRI WAHAB (Indonesia), who had conducted informal consultations on the text, introduced the draft resolution, which was approved by the Committee without a vote.


The representative of Egypt, speaking in explanation of the vote after the vote, drew attention to comments and reservations expressed by the ACABQ concerning the budget proposed regarding information and communications technology.  Replies from the Secretariat to the Advisory Committee and replies to Members States’ questions had not clarified the situation.  He, therefore, did not understand how additional resources proposed by the Secretariat could be justified.  The comments made must be taken into account for future budgets.


Also in explanation of position, Greece (on behalf of the European Union) drew attention to the ACABQ observations with regard to the expenditures on information and communications technology and said that he hoped they would be applied to UNMIK.


The draft resolution on financing of the United Nations Transitional Administration in East Timor (UNTAET) and the United Nations Mission of Support in East Timor (UNMISET) (document A/C.5/57/L.80) was introduced by KARLA SAMAYOA-RECARI (Guatemala), and approved without a vote.  By the text, the Assembly would appropriate to the special account for UNMISET $193.34 million for the period 2003-2004, inclusive of $185 million for the maintenance of the Mission,

$6.38 million for the support account for peacekeeping operations, and

$1.95 million for the Logistics Base.


As for the unencumbered balance of $21.62 million at 30 June 2002, for those Member States that had fulfilled their financial obligations to the Mission, their respective shares of those amounts would be set off against the apportionment for 2003/2004.  Outstanding obligations of Member States that had not fulfilled their financial obligations to UNTAET, and the Support Mission would be set off against their respective share of the unencumbered balance and other income.


The Assembly would request that additional resources referred to in the report of the Advisory Committee (document A/57/772/Add.11) would be used to strengthen national judicial capacity consistent with the needs of the Timorese people and the mandate of the Support Mission.


The Committee approved without a vote the draft resolution on financing of the United Nations Mission in Ethiopia and Eritrea (UNMEE) (document A/C.5/57/L.66), which was introduced by RONALD ELKHUIZEN (Netherlands), who had conducted informal consultations on the item.  According to the draft, the Assembly would appropriate to the special account of UNMEE $196.89 million for the 2003/2004 period, inclusive of $188.4 million for the maintenance of the Mission, $6.5 million for the support account and $1.99 million for the Logistics Base.


The respective shares of the unencumbered balance of $23.94 million at

30 June 2002 of Member States that had fulfilled their financial obligations to the Mission would be set off against their apportionment.  Outstanding obligations of Member States that had not fulfilled their financial obligations to the Mission would be set off against their respective share of the unencumbered balance and other income.


The draft resolution on the financing of the United Nations Angola Verification Mission and the United Nations Observer Mission in Angola (document A/C.5/57/L.87) was introduced by Mr. DRAGULESCU (Romania) and approved without a vote.  By the terms of the draft, the Assembly would authorize the Secretary-General to retain amount of $12.46 million from the balance of appropriation of $72.83 million to meet the cost of outstanding government claims.


The Committee had before it a draft resolution on financing of the activities arising from Security Council resolution 687 (1991):  United Nations Iraq-Kuwait Observation Mission (UNIKOM) (document A/C.5/57/L.81), by the terms of which the Assembly would take note of the status of contributions to the Mission as of 31 March 2003, including outstanding contributions amounting to some

$10.2 million, or about 3 per cent of the total assessed contributions, and note with concern that only 36 Member States have paid their assessed contributions in full.  It would express its continued appreciation to the Government of Kuwait to defray two thirds of the cost of the Observation Mission, effective 1 November 1993.


By further terms of the draft, the Assembly would decide to continue its consideration -– at the main part of the fifty-eighth session -- of the Secretary-General’s report on the financial performance of the Mission for the period from

1 July 2001 to 30 June 2002, and of the treatment of the unspent balance of some $6.44 million in respect of the financial period ending 30 June 2002.


On budget estimates for the period from 1 July 2003 to 30 June 2004, the Assembly would take note of the Secretary-General’s report on the Mission’s budget and his note on the financing of the Observation Mission from 1 July 2003 to

30 June 2004.  It would authorize the Secretary-General to enter into commitments in an amount not exceeding $12 million for the period from 1 July to 31 October 2003, to be financed from the accumulated fund balance in the Special Account for UNIKOM.


The text was introduced by FELICITY BUCHANAN (New Zealand), who had conducted informal consultations on the item.  It was approved without a vote.


By the terms of a draft resolution on financing of the United Nations Mission in Sierra Leone (UNAMSIL) (document A/C.5/57/L.82), the Assembly would decide to appropriate to the Special Account of UNAMSIL $543.49 million for the 2003/2004 period, inclusive of $520.05 million for the maintenance of the Mission, $17.95 million for the support account and $5.49 million of Logistics Base.


The respective shares of the unencumbered balance and other income of

$56.56 million at 30 June 2002 of Member States that had fulfilled their financial obligations to the Mission would be set off against their apportionment. Outstanding obligations of Member States that had not fulfilled their financial obligations to the Mission would be set off against their respective share of the unencumbered balance and other income.


The Assembly would further decide to reduce the appropriation authorized for the Mission for the 2001/2002 period from $717.6 million to $676.6 million, the amount apportioned among Member States in respect of the same period. The Assembly would also approve the decrease in the estimated staff assessment income for the 2001/2002 period from $8.32 million to $7.99 million.


The text, introduced by ASDRUBAL PULIDO DE LEON (Venezuela), was approved without a vote.


MARIA ROSARIO AGUINALDO (Philippines), who had conducted informal consultations on the item, introduced a draft resolution on financing of the United Nations Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO) (document A/C.5/57/L.83).  By the text, the Assembly would appropriate to the Mission’s Special Account for 2003/2004 the amount of $43.4 million, inclusive of

$41.53 million for the maintenance of the Mission, $1.43 million for the support account, and $438,400 for the Logistics Base.


The respective shares of the unencumbered balance and other income of  $12.29 million at 30 June 2002 of Member States that had fulfilled their financial obligations to the Mission would be set off against their apportionment.  Outstanding obligations of Member States that had not fulfilled their financial obligations to the Mission would be set off against their respective share of the unencumbered balance and other income.


The draft was approved without a vote.


Also before the Committee was a draft resolution on the financing of the United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP) (document A/C.5/57/L.69), by which the Assembly would decide to take note of the status of contributions to the Mission as of 31 March 2003, including outstanding contributions of some

$20.2 million, representing about 9 per cent of the total assessed contributions.  Only 31 Member States have paid their assessed contributions in full.  It would also take note of the Secretary-General’s financial performance report for the period from 1 July 2001 to 30 June 2002.


Regarding budget estimates for 1 July 2003 to 30 June 2004, the Assembly would, by further terms of the text, decide to appropriate to the Special Account for UNFICYP some $45.77 million, including $43.8 million for the maintenance of the Force, $1.51 million for the support account, and $462,400 for the Logistics Base.


On the financing of the appropriation, the Assembly would note with appreciation that a one-third share of the net appropriation will be funded through voluntary contributions from the Government of Cyprus and some

$6.5 million from the Government of Greece.


Also according to the draft, the Assembly would decide that, taking into account the unspent balance and other income totalling some $5.38 million for the financial period ending 30 June 2002, for Member States that have fulfilled their financial obligations to the Force, there shall be set off against their apportionment their respective share of the unspent balance in the amount of  $2.74 million.  For Member States that have not fulfilled their obligations, there shall be set off against their outstanding obligations their respective share of the unspent balance.  The decrease of $38,000 in estimated staff assessment income for the period ending 30 June 2002 will be set off against the credits from the amount of some $2.74 million. 


The Assembly would further decide that, taking into account its voluntary contribution for the financial period ending 30 June 2002, that one third of the net unspent balance in the amount of $1.78 million shall be returned to the Government of Cyprus.  It would also decide, taking into account its voluntary contribution for the financial period ended 30 June 2002, that the prorated share of the net unspent balance and other income in the amount of $853,400 be returned to the Government of Greece.


The draft resolution was introduced by Mr. KENDALL (Argentina) who had conducted informal consultations on the matter.  It was approved without a vote.


On the financing of the United Nations Observer Mission in Georgia (UNOMIG), the Committee had before it draft resolution A/C.5/57/L.68, which was introduced by Mr. GETACHEW (Ethiopia).


According to the text, which was approved without a vote, the Assembly would take note of the status of contributions to UNOMIG as of 31 March 2003, including outstanding contributions of some $16.4 million, representing about 9 per cent of total assessed contributions.  Noting with concern that only 22 Member States had paid their assessed contributions in full, it would urge all others, in particular those in arrears, to ensure payment of their outstanding assessed contributions. 


By further terms of the draft, the Assembly would take note of the Secretary-General’s report on the financial performance of the Observer Mission for the period from 1 July 2001 to 30 June 2002.  It would decide to appropriate to the Special Account for UNOMIG the amount of some $32.09 for the period from

1 July 2003 to 30 June 2004, including $30.71 million for the Mission’s maintenance, $10.89 for the support account, and $324,200 for the Logistics Base. 


The respective shares of the unencumbered balance and other income of

$2.69 million at 30 June 2002 of Member States that had fulfilled their financial obligations to the Mission would be set off against their apportionment.  Outstanding obligations of Member States that had not fulfilled their financial obligations to the Mission would be set off against their respective share of the unencumbered balance and other income.


The draft was approved without a vote.


The draft resolution on the financing of the United Nations Mission in Bosnia and Herzegovina (UNMIBH) (document A/C.5/57/L.95) was introduced by EUGENIO A. CANO (Nicaragua) and approved without a vote.  By the terms of the draft, the Assembly would endorse the conclusions and recommendations contained in the report of the Advisory Committee (document A/57/773) and request the Secretary-General to ensure their full implementation.


The respective shares of the unencumbered balance and other income of  $15.02 million at 30 June 2002 of Member States that had fulfilled their financial obligations to the Mission would be set off against their apportionment.  Outstanding obligations of Member States that had not fulfilled their financial obligations to the Mission would be set off against their respective share of the unencumbered balance and other income.


The Committee then turned to the draft resolution on the financing of the United Nations Organization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUC) (document A/C.5/57/L.75).  MARGARET STANLEY (Ireland) introduced the draft, which was approved without a vote.


According to the terms of the text, the Assembly would take note of the status of contributions to the Mission as of 31 March 2003, including outstanding contributions amounting to about $211.9 million, representing some 17 per cent of the total assessed contributions.  Only 26 Member States have paid their assessed contributions in full.  Taking note of the Secretary-General’s progress report on the status of the airfield services contract for the Mission, it would look forward to the further review of the subject by the Board of Auditors.


Also by the terms of the draft, the Assembly would note the Secretary-General’s intention to submit a proposed revised budget for the period from 1 July 2003 to 30 June 2004 to the Assembly at the main part of its fifty-eighth session, reflecting the developments in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and further decisions of the Security Council.  It would endorse the recommendations of the ACABQ in its report and request the Secretary-General to ensure their full implementation, with the understanding that the Secretary-General should have adequate resources to address the changing situation on the ground, subject to the provisions of the present resolution.


[In its report (document A/57/772/Add.10), the Advisory Committee recommends that the Assembly appropriate some $582 million for MONUC for the period from

1 July 2003 to 30 June 2004, and that that amount be assessed at a monthly rate of $48.5 million gross, pending the submission of a new budget for 2003/2004.]


On the Mission’s financial performance for the period from 1 July 2001 to  30 June 2002, the Assembly would take note of the Secretary-General’s report and decide to offset some $41 million, which had been appropriated but not apportioned during the financial period ending 30 June 2001 against the unspent balance of $61.2 million for the period ending 30 June 2002.


By further terms, the Assembly would decide to appropriate to the Special Account for MONUC some $608.23 million for the period from 1 July 2003 to 30 June 2004, including $582 million for the Mission’s maintenance, $20.08 million for the support account, and $6.14 million for the Logistics Base, pending the submission of the proposed revised budget to the Assembly. 


The Committee’s attention was also drawn to a note by the Secretary-General (document A/C.5/57/38), which contains the amounts to be apportioned in respect of each peacekeeping mission, including the prorate share of the support account and the Logistics Base.  The document was introduced by Ms. POLLARD, Director of Peacekeeping Financing Division.


The Committee then took note of the information provided by the Secretariat.


      The Committee also had before it a draft resolution on closed peacekeeping missions (document A/C.5/57/L.89), which was introduced by Mr. DRAGULESCU (Romania).


By the terms of the draft, the Assembly would take note of the reports of the Secretary-General on the updated financial position of closed peacekeeping missions as at 30 June 2002 (document A/57/789), and on the financing of the United Nations Transition Assistance Group (A/57/793), the United Nations Angola Verification Mission and the United Nations Observer Mission in Angola (A/57/796), the United Nations Mission of Observers in Tajikistan (A/57/792), the United Nations Observer Mission in Liberia (A/57/794), the United Nations Mission in Uganda-Rwanda and the United Nations Assistance Mission for Rwanda (A/57/791) and the United Nations Mission in the Central African Republic (A/57/795), and the related report of the Advisory Committee.


The Assembly would request the Secretary-General to return 50 per cent of the net cash available for credit to Member States as of 30 June 2002,

$84.45 million, by 30 June 2003, based on the scale applicable to the missions’ last assessment.  The Assembly would decide to postpone the return of the remaining 50 per cent, $84.45 million, until 31 March 2004 in light of the overall financial situation of the Organization and the fact that assessed contributions to peacekeeping in the amount of $1.4 billion remained unpaid as at 31 March 2003.


Also by the text, the Assembly would approve the donation of assets of the United Nations Assistance Mission for Rwanda with a total inventory value of $12.58 million and corresponding residual value of $2.4 million to the Government of Rwanda.


The Assembly would also approve the donation of assets of the United Nations Assistance Mission for Rwanda with a total inventory value of $79,200 and corresponding residual value of $53,400 to the medical unit of a Member State.


The representative of Greece, speaking on behalf of the European Union and associated States, in explanation of position, said the fact mentioned at the end of operative paragraph 3 that $1.4 billion in assessed contributions to peacekeeping remained unpaid was an explanation and not a condition for returning the remaining 50 per cent of net cash available to Member States by 31 March 2004.  He expected that the date mentioned would be respected.


The Committee then approved, without a vote, a draft decision on questions deferred for future consideration (document A/C.5/57/L.96).  Among the issues to be deferred to the fifty-eighth session are reports related to the implementation of the field assets control system; the audit of the establishment and management of mission subsistence allowance rates; reform of the Field Service category of personnel; status of recommendations on mission liquidation activities; and possible discrimination due to nationality, race, sex, religion and language in recruitment, promotion and placement.


The representative of Argentina said paragraphs a and c of item 112 in the text, negotiations on which he had coordinated, had to be deferred because of a lack of time.  He would, however, insist in dealing with the two items on a priority basis.


The representative of the United States said that his delegation shared the concern of Argentina.  It was regrettable that the Committee had been unable to consider all the items in the time allotted.  The items carried over should be considered as soon as possible.


Congratulatory remarks were made by the representatives of Morocco (speaking on behalf of the Group of 77 and China), Greece (on behalf of the European Union and associated States, Botswana (on behalf of the African Group), Belgium, United States, and Venezuela.


The CHAIRMAN, in concluding remarks, thanked for all kind and warm remarks. He said the Committee’s fifty-seventh session would go down in history as one of the most remarkable sessions in the history of the United Nations.  He congratulated all members and thanked all those who had made the Committee’s work possible.  He noted that the Committee had received tremendous cooperation from the ACABQ.


ANNEX I


Vote on Preambular Paragraph 4, Operative Paragraphs 3, 4 and 14

of Lebanon Resolution


The preambular paragraph 4 and operative paragraphs 3, 4, and 14 concerning Israeli financial obligations for incident at Qana (document A/C.5/57/L.78) were retained by a recorded vote of 80 in favour to 2 against, with 47 abstentions, as follows:


In favour:  Algeria, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belize, Benin, Bhutan, Bolivia Botswana, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Chile, China, Colombia, Comoros, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Egypt, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, India, Indonesia, Iran, Jamaica, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Lebanon, Libya, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Mongolia, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Nepal, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Qatar, Russian Federation, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Somalia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Syria, Thailand, Togo, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, United Republic of Tanzania, Venezuela, Viet Nam, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe.


Against:  Israel, United States.


Abstain:  Andorra, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Malta, Monaco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Republic of Korea, Republic of Moldova, Romania, San Marino, Serbia and Montenegro, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Turkey, Uganda, Ukraine, United Kingdom, Uruguay.


Absent:  Afghanistan, Albania, Angola, Belarus, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo, Costa Rica, Côte d’Ivoire, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Dominica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Estonia, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Gabon, Gambia, Grenada, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Honduras, Iraq, Kenya, Kiribati, Kyrgyzstan, Lesotho, Liberia, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Malawi, Malta, Marshall Islands, Namibia, Nauru, Niger, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Rwanda, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Samoa, Sao Tome and Principe, Seychelles, Solomon Islands, Suriname, Swaziland, Tajikistan, Timor-Leste, Tonga, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, Uzbekistan, Vanuatu.


ANNEX II


Vote on Resolution on Financing Lebanon Mission


The resolution on financing the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) (document A/C.5/57/L.78) was approved by a recorded vote of 129 in favour to 2 against, with no abstentions, as follows:


In favour:  Algeria, Andorra, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belgium, Belize, Benin, Bhutan, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Comoros, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Egypt, Ethiopia, Finland, France, Gabon, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Latvia, Lebanon, Libya, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Malta, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Monaco, Mongolia, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Russian Federation, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia and Montenegro, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Somalia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Thailand, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Togo, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United Republic of Tanzania, Uruguay, Venezuela, Viet Nam, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe.


Against:  Israel, United States.


Abstain:  None.


Absent:  Afghanistan, Albania, Angola, Belarus, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo, Côte d’Ivoire, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Dominica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Estonia, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Gambia, Grenada, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Honduras, Iraq, Kenya, Kiribati, Kyrgyzstan, Lesotho, Liberia, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Malawi, Malta, Marshall Islands, Namibia, Nauru, Niger, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Rwanda, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Samoa, Sao Tome and Principe, Seychelles, Solomon Islands, Suriname, Swaziland, Tajikistan, Timor-Leste, Tonga, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, Uzbekistan, Vanuatu.


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