27/6/2005
Press Release
DC/2974


SECRETARY-GENERALíS ADVISORY BOARDON DISARMAMENT MATTERS


TO MEET IN GENEVA, 29 JUNE - 1 JULY 2005


NEW YORK, 24 June (Department for Disarmament Affairs) -- The Secretary-Generalís Advisory Board on Disarmament Matters will meet for a three-day closed session in Geneva, from 29 June to 1 July 2005.† The Board, which meets twice a year, held its last Ė 44th session -- at UN Headquarters in New York from 23 to 25 February 2005.


The Board advises the Secretary-General on matters within the areas of disarmament, arms control and non-proliferation, including on studies and research under the auspices of the United Nations or institutions within the United Nations system.


At its 45th session, the Board will deliberate on two topics: †(a) challenges and opportunities at the regional level in the areas of weapons of mass destruction and conventional arms; and (b) a review of disarmament machinery. †It will submit the outcome of its deliberations, including possible recommendations, to the Secretary-General.


The session will be chaired by Ambassador Vicente Berasategui of Argentina. †Currently, the Board has 22 members, appointed by the Secretary-General and serving in their personal capacities. †The Director of the United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research (UNIDIR), Patricia Lewis, will participate in the meeting as an ex officio member.


The Board serves as the Board of Trustees of the United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research.† In that capacity, the Board will review the report of the Director of UNIDIR on the activities of the Institute for the period August 2004 to July 2005 and planned activities for 2006 and beyond.


Over the years, the Advisory Board has made practical recommendations to the Secretary-General on a number of important issues in the field of disarmament, arms control and non-proliferation. †Most recently, it examined nuclear fuel cycle and fissile material control; regional security and global norms: †small arms and light weapons; terrorism and weapons of mass destruction; export controls; compliance, verification and enforcement of multilateral disarmament treaties; revolution in military affairs; disarmament and human security; disarmament and development; prevention of weaponization of outer space; and curbing the proliferation of small arms and light weapons, among others.† It also initiated the United Nations Study on Disarmament and Non-Proliferation Education, adopted by the General Assembly in 2002.


In 2004, the Advisory Board contributed to the work of the High-Level Panel on Threats, Challenges and Change by providing a comprehensive input on issues related to disarmament and non-proliferation (available at: http://disarmament2.un.org/ddapublications/op8.htm).


Background


The Advisory Board on Disarmament Matters was established in 1978 pursuant to paragraph 124 of the Final Document of the Tenth Special Session of the General Assembly, and received its current mandate pursuant to General Assembly decision 54/418 of 1 December 1999. †The Advisory Board on Disarmament Matters has the following functions:† to advise the Secretary-General on matters within the area of arms limitation and disarmament, including on studies and research under the auspices of the United Nations or institutions within the United Nations system; to serve as the Board of Trustees of the United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research; to advise the Secretary-General on the implementation of the United Nations Disarmament Information Programme.


Members of the Board are appointed by the Secretary-General on the basis of their expertise in the field of disarmament and/or the wider field of international security, taking into account the principle of equitable geographical representation. †The Director of UNIDIR participates as ex officio member of the Board.


The Chairman of the Board submits a private report to the Secretary-General on the work of each session. †The Secretary-General, as requested by the Assembly in 1983 (resolution 38/183 O), submits a report on the work of the Board to the General Assembly. †The latest report is contained in document A/59/361. †The Secretary-General also submits a note to the Assembly transmitting the report of the Director of UNIDIR and the report of the Board of Trustees of the Institute. †For the latest report see document A/59/168.


For further information, please contact: †Xiaoyu Wang, Secretary of the Advisory Board, tel.:† (212) 963-9440, e-mail: †wangxy@un.org.


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