20 November 2008
General Assembly
GA/SHC/3939

Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

Sixty-third General Assembly

Third Committee

42nd & 43rd Meetings (AM & PM)


GENERAL ASSEMBLY WILL REAFFIRM RESOLUTION ON DEATH PENALTY MORATORIUM,


UNDER TERMS OF DRAFT TEXT APPROVED BY THIRD COMMITTEE

 


13 Texts Approved; Self-Determination of Palestinians, Globalization,

Trafficking in Persons, National Human Rights Bodies among Issues Addressed


Following the defeat of seven written amendments and two oral amendments, the Third Committee (Social, Humanitarian and Cultural) today approved a draft resolution that would have the General Assembly reaffirm last year’s controversial resolution on a death penalty moratorium and take up the issue again in two year’s time.


That draft text, approved by a vote of 105 in favour to 48 against, with 31 abstentions (Annex V), was one of 13 resolutions approved today, and one of five approved by a recorded vote.


Last year’s Assembly resolution, 62/149, passed amid great controversy in December 2007, and called on States to establish a moratorium on executions with a view to abolishing the death penalty.  By today’s text, the Assembly would welcome the global trend towards the abolition of capital punishment, and endorse the conclusions and recommendations contained in the Secretary-General’s report on the implementation of the 2007 resolution.  By further terms, the Assembly would request the Secretary-General to provide a new report on the implementation of resolution 62/149 for consideration during its sixty-fifth session.


On Tuesday, the Committee had rejected seven written amendments put forward by delegates, who argued that the text’s wording had not reflected the views of all Member States accurately enough.  In particular, they said they did not agree that the 2007 resolution, highly contentious at the time, should be “reaffirmed”, or that the Secretary-General’s report on the issue should be “welcomed” (see Press Release GA/SHC/3938).


The representative of the Bahamas, who was among those that had voted against the draft today, objected to the way in which the Secretary-General’s report had classified countries as “abolitionist” or “retentionist”.  In that report, a fellow member of the Caribbean Community, Barbados, had not applied the death penalty in 25 years, but was considered retentionist, while 10 countries were considered abolitionist for abolishing capital punishment for ordinary crimes, but still maintaining the death penalty in exceptional circumstances.


Also opposing the draft, the representative of Egypt said the current text was aimed at reinterpreting the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which -- as the representative of the United States and others said -- permitted the use of capital punishment for the most serious crimes, pursuant to its application by a competent court and within the application of due process.


Nevertheless, the resolution passed, despite those protests, including attempts by the representative of Malaysia, with the support of Singapore and others, to orally amend the text, so that the issue of capital punishment would be considered three years from now, as opposed to two years as stipulated in the text.  “To insist on considering the question at the sixty-fifth session would perpetuate divisions”, he said, taking the floor several times to argue that the international community had been no closer to consensus this year than at the last.  The representative of Singapore went further, arguing that there was unlikely to be a significant change in position in two years’ time.


The representative of Malaysia also took time to respond to arguments by the text’s co-sponsors that the Assembly should be made to welcome a global trend towards abolition, arguing that States should not make assumptions based on perceived trends, and that they should not use such assumptions to decide how other countries should evolve their own legal systems.


In contrast, the representative of Germany, whose country was a co-sponsor of the text, said that, given the question’s importance, the General Assembly should be given the opportunity to continue considering the matter sooner rather than later.  While noting that the Committee had chosen to reject the written amendments put forward by opponents on Tuesday, he expressed regret at what he viewed as a “last ditch attempt” to slow down voting on the resolution.


Just prior to a vote on the text, the representatives of Barbados and Singapore had each called for a vote on individual paragraphs.  Both motions were rejected down -- the proposal of Barbados to vote on a preambular paragraph that would have the Assembly reaffirm resolution 62/149, which was defeated by a vote of 88 against to 53 in favour, with 24 abstentions (Annex III); and the Singapore proposal to vote on a paragraph welcoming the Secretary-General’s report, which was rejected by a vote of the 88 against to 55 in favour, with 24 abstentions (see Annex IV).


On other fronts, the Committee approved fourother resolutions by recorded vote, including a draft on the equitable membership to rights treaty bodies, which was approved by a vote of 122 in favour to 53 against, with 4 abstentions (Brazil, Cape Verde, Timor-Leste, Ukraine) (Annex VIII).  The representative of the United States, who had requested the vote, said the process of selecting members to treaty bodies had already been set forth in the treaties themselves, in such a way as to maintain diversity.  States parties should determine the method of selection of the membership of the treaty bodies, and it was not appropriate for the General Assembly to substitute its judgement for theirs.


The Committee also held a recorded vote on a draft resolution regarding globalization and its impact on the full enjoyment of human rights, which was approved by a vote of 125 in favour to 53 against, with 3 abstentions (Brazil, Chile, Singapore) (see Annex IX).  The vote was requested by France on behalf of the European Union, who cautioned against making a blanket statement on the effect of globalization on human rights, saying that globalization provided opportunities that favoured growth and prosperity, which could help bring a positive impact to the protection and promotion of human rights.


Another recorded votes was held on a draft resolution on the right to universal freedom of travel and the vital importance of family reunification, which passed by 118 votes in favour to 3 against (Israel, Palau, United States) and 60 abstentions (see Annex VI).


A draft on the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination was also subjected to a vote and approved by a recorded vote of 175 in favour to 5 against (Israel, Marshall Islands, Micronesia (Federated States of), Palau, United States), with 5 abstentions (Australia, Cameroon, Canada, Equatorial Guinea, Fiji) (Annex VII).


The eight resolutions approved without a vote were:  a draft on national institutions for the promotion and protection of human rights; a text on the effective promotion of the Declaration on the Rights of Persons Belonging to National or Ethnic, Religious and Linguistic Minorities; a draft on missing persons, as orally amended; and a text on improving the coordination of efforts against trafficking in persons, also as orally amended.  In connection with the draft on human trafficking, the Committee took note of two reports of the Secretary-General:  on assistance in implementing the universal conventions and protocols related to terrorism, and on improving the coordination of efforts against trafficking in persons.


The additional drafts approved concerned:  a new international humanitarian order; implementation of the Outcome of the World Summit for Social Development and of the twenty-fourth special session of the General Assembly, as orally revised; the future operation of the International Research and Training Institute for the Advancement of Women; and on the Subregional Centre for Human Rights and Democracy in Central Africa.


In other business, the Committee heard the introduction of three draft resolutions:  on the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, introduced by the representative of Belgium; global efforts for the total elimination of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance and the comprehensive implementation of and follow-up to the Durban Declaration and Programme of Action, by the representative of Antigua and Barbuda; and rights of the child, introduced by the representative of New Zealand.


Also speaking on the texts of the draft resolutions, proposed amendments and motions for divisionwere the representatives of Chile, China, New Zealand, Czech Republic, Mexico, Antigua and Barbuda, Benin, Monaco, Armenia, United Kingdom, Uruguay, France, Costa Rica, Sudan, Guinea-Bissau, Switzerland, Colombia, Iran, Croatia, Myanmar, Guyana, Thailand, Yemen, Papua New Guinea, India, Nigeria, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Syria, United States, Morocco, Lebanon, Ghana, Japan, Bangladesh, Viet Nam, Bhutan, Saudi Arabia, Swaziland, Botswana, Djibouti, Slovakia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Cuba, Philippines, Belarus, Mauritius, Jordan, Greece, Israel, Federated States of Micronesia, Canada, Argentina, Russian Federation and Gabon, as well as the observer from Palestine.


The representative of the United Kingdom spoke in exercise of the right of reply.


The Committee will meet again at 10 a.m., Friday, 21 November, to take action on outstanding draft resolutions.


Background


The Third Committee (Social, Humanitarian and Cultural) was today expected to take up the six remaining resolutions from its last meeting, on:  a moratorium on the use of the death penalty (document A/C.3/63/L.19/Rev.1); national institutions for the promotion and protection of human rights (document A/C.3/63/L.23); effective promotion of the Declaration on the Rights of Persons Belonging to National or Ethnic, Religious and Linguistic Minorities (document A/C.3/63/L.25/Rev.1); missing persons (document A/C.3/63/L.36); respect for the right to universal freedom of travel and the vital importance of family reunification (document A/C.3/63/L.43); and improving the coordination of efforts against trafficking in persons (document A/C.3/63/L.9/Rev.1).  (For background, see Press Release GA/SHC/3938.)


Other drafts before the Committee include one on the new international humanitarian order (document A/C.3/63/L.55), which would have the Assembly recognize the need for the further strengthening of national, regional and international efforts to address humanitarian emergencies.  It would have the Assembly urge Governments, intergovernmental organizations and civil society, including non-governmental organizations, to extend cooperation and support to the Secretary-General’s efforts to address the needs of populations requiring humanitarian assistance, as well as the safety and security of humanitarian workers from the United Nations and elsewhere.


A draft resolution on the implementation of the outcome of the World Summit for Social Development and of the twenty-fourth special session of the General Assembly (document A/C.3/63/L.5/Rev.1) was also before the Committee.  The draft text would have the Assembly express a deep concern that the attainment of social development objectives may be hindered by instability in global and national financial markets, as well as challenges brought about by the ongoing fuel and food crisis.  Against that backdrop, the Assembly would urge developed countries that had not yet done so to make concrete efforts towards meeting the targets of 0.7 per cent of their gross national product (GNP) for official development assistance (ODA) to developing countries and 0.15 to 0.2 per cent of their GNP to least developed countries.


Also before the Committee was the draft resolution on the future operation of the International Research and Training Institute for the Advancement of Women (INSTRAW) (document A/C.3/63/L.14/Rev.1), which would have the Assembly acknowledge the contributions of the Institute in promoting gender equality and the empowerment of women in the areas of security, international migration, and governance and political participation.  By the terms of the text, the Assembly would call for the diversification of funding resources and invite Member States to continue to provide assistance and support to the Institute through voluntary contributions and substantive involvement in its projects and activities.


The next draft resolution, on the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination (document A/C.3/63/L.52*), would have the Assembly reaffirm the right of Palestinian people to self-determination, including the right to an independent State of Palestine.  It would further urge all States and United Nations entities to continue to support and assist the Palestinian people in the early realization of their right to self-determination.


By the draft resolution on equitable geographical distribution in the membership of the human rights treaty bodies (document A/C.3/63/L.45), the Assembly would call on States parties to the United Nations human rights instruments to include a debate on ways to ensure equitable geographical distribution in the membership of the human rights treaty bodies, based on previous recommendations of the Commission on Human Rights and the Economic and Social Council.  It would recommend the introduction of “flexible procedures” when considering the possible establishment of a regional quota for the membership of each treaty body, where each of the five regional groups would be assigned a quota in equivalent proportion to the number of States parties to the instrument that it represents; that there must be provision for periodic revisions that reflected the relative changes in the geographical distribution of States parties; and that automatic periodic revisions should be envisaged to avoid amending the text of the instrument when the quotas were revised.


The Committee also had before it the draft resolution on globalization and its impact on the full enjoyment of human rights (document A/C.3/63/L.28), which would recognize that, while globalization offers great opportunities, the fact that its benefits are very unevenly shared and its costs unevenly distributed represents an aspect of the process that affects the full enjoyment of all human rights, in particular in developing countries.  It would have the Assembly underline the urgent need to establish an equitable, transparent and democratic international system to strengthen and broaden the participation of developing countries in international economic decision-making and norm-setting and underline the need to continue to analyse the consequences of globalization for the full enjoyment of all human rights.


The resolution on the Subregional Centre for Human Rights and Democracy in Central Africa (document A/C.3/63/L.29) would have the Assembly note efforts of the Secretary-General and the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to ensure the full implementation of relevant resolutions of the General Assembly to provide sufficient funds and human resources for the Centre’s missions.  It would request those two officials to continue to provide additional funds and human resources within existing resources of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) to enable the Centre to respond effectively to growing needs in the promotion and protection of human rights and in developing a culture of democracy and rule of law in the Central African subregion.


Also before the Committee was a draft resolution on human rights and unilateral coercive measures (document A/C.3/63/L.31), which would have the Assembly reaffirm the right of all peoples to self-determination, by virtue of which they freely determine their political status and freely pursue their economic, social and cultural development.  Underlining that unilateral coercive measures were one of the major obstacles to the implementation of the Declaration on the Right to Development, the draft resolution would also have the Assembly call on all States to avoid the unilateral imposition of economic coercive measures and the extraterritorial application of domestic laws that run counter to the principles of free trade and hamper the development of developing countries.


A draft resolution on the enhancement of international cooperation in the field of human rights (document A/C.3/63/L.32) was also before the Committee.  The draft would have the Assembly recognize that, in addition to individual responsibilities, States had a collective responsibility to uphold the principles of human dignity, equality and equity at the global level and, as such, it would have the Assembly urge all international actors to build an international order based on inclusion, justice, equality and equity, human dignity, mutual understanding and promotion and respect for cultural diversity and universal human rights.  It would also have the Assembly invite States and relevant United Nations human rights mechanisms and procedures to continue to pay attention to the importance of mutual cooperation, and request the Secretary-General to undertake consultation on ways and means to enhance international cooperation in the United Nations human rights machinery.


The draft resolution on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions (document A/C.3/63/L.35/Rev.1) was also before the Committee.  Noting with deep concern that impunity continues to be a major cause of the perpetuation of violations, it would reiterate the obligation of all States to conduct exhaustive and impartial investigations into all suspected cases of extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, to identify and bring to justice those responsible, while ensuring the right of every person to a fair and public hearing.  The draft would also have the Assembly call upon all States in which the death penalty has not been abolished to prevent extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions by complying with their obligations under relevant provisions of international human rights instruments.  (Note that two craft amendments to that same draft were also before the Committee, contained in documents A/C.3/63/L.74 and L.75.)


The Committee also had before it a draft resolution on the protection of migrants (document A/C.3/63/L.38/Rev.1), which would have the Assembly express concern about legislation and measures adopted by some States that may restrict the human rights and fundamental freedoms of migrants.  It would strongly condemn the manifestations and acts of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance against migrants and the stereotypes often applied to them, and would reinforce the existing laws in order to eradicate impunity for those who commit xenophobic and racist acts.  At the same time, the draft would have the Assembly encourage all States to remove obstacles that may prevent the safe, unrestricted and expeditious transfer of remittances of migrants to their country of origin or to any other countries and to consider measures to solve other problems that may impede such transfers.


By the draft resolution on the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance (document A/C.3/63/L.41), the Assembly would call on States that had not yet done so to consider signing and ratifying the Convention as a matter of priority, and to consider the option provided for in articles 31 and 32 of the Convention regarding the Committee on Enforced Disappearances.  The Assembly would request United Nations agencies and organizations, and invite intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations and the Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances, to continue undertaking efforts to disseminate information on the Convention, to promote its understanding, to prepare for its entry into force, and to assist States parties in implementing their obligations under that instrument.


By the draft resolution on the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order (document A/C.3/63/L.44), the Assembly would affirm that everyone was entitled to a democratic and equitable international order, and would also affirm that such an international order would foster the full realization of all human rights for all.  It would call on Member States to fulfil their commitment expressed at the World Conference against Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance, to maximize the benefits of globalization by enhancing international cooperation to increase equality of opportunities for trade, economic growth and sustainable development, among other things.  It would have the Assembly request the Human Rights Council, human rights treaty bodies, the OHCHR and United Nations special mechanisms to make contributions towards the implementation of the present resolution.


A draft resolution on the situation of human rights in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (document A/C.3/63/L.26) was also before the Committee.  By the terms of that draft, Assembly would urge the Government of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea to respect fully all human rights and fundamental freedoms by, among other things:  immediately putting an end to the systematic, widespread and grave violations of human rights mentioned in the resolution; by addressing the issue of impunity and ensuring that those responsible for violations of human rights are brought to justice before an independent judiciary; by tackling the root causes leading to refugee outflows and prosecuting those who exploited refugees by human smuggling, trafficking and extortion, while not criminalizing the victims; and by extending its full cooperation to the Special Rapporteur on the issue and to other United Nations human rights mechanisms.


A draft resolution on the situation of human rights in Myanmar (document A/C.3/63/L.33), also before the Committee, would have the Assembly call on the Government of Myanmar to reveal the whereabouts of persons detained or missing and to seize the opportunity of the Secretary-General’s good offices to cooperate fully with the good offices mission in the fulfilment of its responsibilities, namely, the release of political prisoners and the commencement of a substantive dialogue on a democratic transition.  It would also have the Assembly call strongly on the Government to ensure safe and unhindered access to all parts of Myanmar for the United Nations, international humanitarian organizations and their partners, to ensure that humanitarian assistance was delivered to all persons in need.  At the same time, it would call for all political representatives and representatives of ethnic nationalities to be allowed to participate fully in the political transition process and, to that end, for the Government to immediately resume a dialogue with all political actors.


Programme budget implications (document A/C.3/63/L.71) of the draft resolution on Myanmar would amount to $753,200 net ($837,700 gross) for the continuation of the efforts of the good offices of the Secretary-General relating to the situation in Myanmar, for the period from 1 January to 31 December 2009.  Appropriations for these requirements would be sought in the context of the report of the Secretary-General on estimates in respect of special political missions, good offices and other political initiatives authorized by the Assembly and/or the Security Council (documents A/63/346/Add.1 and Corr.1) that is being submitted to the Assembly during its current session.


By the draft on the situation of human rights in Iran (document A/C.3/63/L.40), the Assembly would take note of the Secretary-General’s report on that matter and call on the Government to address concerns such as:  eliminating the use of cruel or inhuman punishments; abolishing public executions and the executions of persons who were under 18 years at the time of their offence; abolishing the use of stoning as a method of execution; and eliminating discrimination against women and of minorities, including by implementing the report of the Special Rapporteur on ways in which Iran could emancipate the Baha’i community.  It would also have the Assembly call on the Government to end the harassment, intimidation and persecution of political opponents and human rights defenders, including by releasing persons imprisoned arbitrarily or on the basis of their political views.  It would further have the Assembly uphold the rights to due process and to end impunity for human rights violations.  The draft would further call on the Government of Iran to facilitate visits to its territory of special procedures mandate holders, and encourage the Government to continue exploring cooperation on human rights and justice reform with the United Nations, including the OHCHR.


The Committee was also expected to hear the introduction of three draft resolutions:  International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (document A/C.3/63/L.53/Rev.1); global efforts for the total elimination of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance and the comprehensive implementation of and follow-up to the Durban Declaration and Programme of Action (document A/C.3/63/L.51/Rev.1); and rights of the child (document A/C.3/63/L.46*).


Action on Draft Resolutions


The Committee resumed its consideration of a moratorium on the use of the death penalty (document A/C.3/63/L.19/Rev.1).  Recalling that the Committee took action on seven draft amendments relating to that text at its last meeting, the Chair then invited the Committee to take action on the draft as a whole.


The representative of Barbados requested a separate vote on preambular paragraph 1.


Malaysia’s representative, after asking permission to propose an oral amendment, noted that the close results of Tuesday’s votes on the draft amendments had indicated that States were still divided on the issue and that the international community was no closer to consensus.  The fact that a number of delegations had voted for the amendments, or had abstained from voting, indicated their discomfort with the resolution as a whole.  Therefore, he proposed that references to requests for the Secretary-General to provide a report for consideration at the Assembly’s sixty-fifth session, as contained in operative paragraphs 2 and 3, be changed to “sixty-sixth session” so as to provide further time for countries to evolve their opinion on the issue.  To insist on considering the question at the sixty-fifth session would perpetuate divisions.


Further, votes against the amendments of two days ago had seemed to reflect a bloc outlook and did not reflect a judgement on the merits of those amendments, which he believed would have enhanced the text.  Those amendments had been defeated by sheer numbers.  He invited countries to take those points into account and to support his proposed oral amendment.


The representative of Chile, the main sponsor of draft L.19/Rev.1, said the proposals by Malaysia went against the text’s objective.  Speaking on behalf of its co-sponsors, he said he would reject those proposed modifications.


The Committee then held a vote on whether to change the references to “sixty-fifth session” to “sixty-sixth session”.


The representative of Singapore voiced support for the proposed amendment, saying she did not believe that the Third Committee should revisit the death penalty issue over and over again.  She expressed doubts that nations would change their opinion on that issue in a matter of two years, and that discussing the issue at that time would only reopen a divisive issue.  She noted that some countries were opposed to discussing the issue at all, but nevertheless she was prepared to discuss it on a triennial basis.  She urged all to vote in favour of the amendment, and hoped that Member States would view it as a good compromise position.


The representative of China said the Committee had spent many hours and wasted conference services in discussing the issue of the death penalty.  Last year, the discussion had spanned two days; much time was spent on the issue this year, as well, and still no conclusion had been reached.  Discussions of this kind would not help remove differences, and, for that reason, she would support Malaysia’s proposal.


The representative of Germany, whose country was a co-sponsor, said that the decision to consider the issue biannually had been made after lengthy consideration and was a core component of the resolution.  It would give States an opportunity to reflect on what was still needed to implement the resolution.  Given the question’s importance, and given a global trend towards abolition, the General Assembly should be given the opportunity to continue considering the matter in the “not too distant future”.  Allowing it to revisit the issue at the sixty-fifth session was, in the view of co-sponsors, the right amount of time.  The co-sponsors decided not to accept the proposal when it had been made during informal meetings on the draft.


He felt that the Committee had dealt with proposed amendment by States opposed to L.19 at its last meeting.  Some of those had been principled amendments, while others had been aimed towards slowing down proceedings on the issue.  All had been rejected by a majority of States.  He regretted that the Committee had to spend time to humour a last ditch attempt to slow down voting on L.19.  He felt the amendments were hostile to the spirit of that draft, and he would encourage all to reject it.


The representative of New Zealand said her delegation also opposed the proposal from Malaysia.  As had already been pointed out, one of the key decisions taken by co-sponsors in drafting the resolution was to address the issue of the moratorium on a biannual basis, since that time frame was both “practical and realistic”.  Transparency and predictability was always essential, but particularly so when there was disagreement among Member States.  For that reason, it was necessary to maintain the timeline laid out in the draft resolution.


Egypt’s delegate spoke in favour of the proposed amendment, suggesting that the amendment would help build a spirit of cooperation and avoid the divisions that had existed within the membership in previous debates.


The representative of the Czech Republic, as a co-sponsor of the draft resolution, said that the timeline laid out in the draft resolution was at the text’s very core.  Consideration of the issue on a biannual basis would give States the time to reflect on the resolution, follow up on it, and would allow all parties to undertake a proper assessment of the situation on the ground.  Her delegation would, therefore, vote against the amendment, and she called on all Member States to do the same.


The oral amendment to operative paragraph 2, which would have the General Assembly decide to continue consideration of the matter at its sixty-sixth session, not its sixty-fifth, was rejected by a recorded vote of 88 against to 55 in favour, with 24 abstentions (see Annex I).


The Committee then moved to take action on the same oral amendment to operative paragraph 3, and rejected it by a recorded vote of 90 against to 53 in favour, with 23 abstentions (Annex II).


Moving to take action on preambular paragraph 1, as requested by the representative of Barbados, the representative of Mexico raised a point of order, asking what procedural rule allowed for such a vote.


After the CHAIR informed the Committee that the request for a vote was made under rule 129, the representative of Mexico said that accepting a vote on separate paragraphs would be an unnecessary waste of time.  As such, his delegation would vote against the proposal and invited all delegates to do the same.


The CHAIR noted Mexico’s objection and, in line with the rules of procedure, gave the floor to two representatives to speak in favour of the motion and two to speak against.


The representative of Antigua and Barbuda spoke in favour of the motion.


On a point of order, the representative of Benin asked what motion was being acted on:  that proposed by Barbados, or the counter-motion by Mexico.  The CHAIR informed the Committee that it would be acting on the motion of Barbados, after hearing two speakers from both sides of the issue.


The representative of Barbados asked the Chair to move directly to the vote on the preambular paragraph 1, which was rejected by the Chair, since reactions must be heard regarding the motion under rule 129, in accordance with the rules of procedure.


Resuming, the representative of Antigua and Barbuda said her delegation supported the call for a vote on the preambular paragraph.  Efforts to introduce an amendment to that paragraph during the informal consultations were rejected and there were now few other options available to those who opposed it.  A vote on the paragraph would be necessary to allow for delegations to voice their clear and fundamental opposition to resolution 62/149 and to bring a measure of balance to the otherwise extremely biased proposition.


The representative of Singapore, supporting the motion by Barbados, said that a vote on the preambular paragraph would be the fairest way for the Committee to express itself on such a “contentious paragraph”.  Opposition to a vote could be representative of the fact that some delegations were afraid to allow closer inspection of individual paragraphs of the resolution.  She urged all countries to vote in support of the proposal, with a view to showing greater fairness and balance.


The representative of Monaco, voicing opposition to that motion, said she regretted the request made by Barbados.  The draft as a whole had received the support of 89 countries and had been the result of informal discussions open to all Members.  Those not in favour of the text had had the opportunity to express their opinion during last session’s vote, and dividing the text would only slow down consideration of the resolution.


Agreeing, the representative of Armenia then began explaining why the Committee should vote against the proposal for division of resolution, but was interrupted by the representative of Malaysia who raised a point of order.  In the context of rule 129, the Committee would hear two speakers for, and two against, the proposed motion.  Antigua and Barbuda and Singapore had spoken for the motion, and Mexico and Monaco had spoken against.  To clarify the issue, the CHAIR explained that the representative of Mexico had spoken to raise an objection to the motion.  The floor was given to two delegations in support of Barbados’ original motion, and Armenia was the second delegation to speak in opposition.


Resuming his statement, the representative of Armenia said the Committee had already taken action on seven written amendments and two oral amendments on that simple resolution, taking up much time in the process.  Those opposing the text had had numerous opportunities to voice their respective views.  That was merely an attempt to slow down consideration of the draft on procedural grounds.  There was no need to engage in such a lengthy and unnecessary exercise.  He would vote against the proposal and asked all others to do the same.


The Committee then voted on the motion of division by Barbados to have a separate vote on preambular paragraph I, rejecting that motion by a vote of 88 against to 53 in favour, with 24 abstentions (Annex III).


The representative of the United Kingdom reiterated the point that, in response to the representative of Singapore, who had talked of a “no action motion”, the representative of Mexico had put forward a vote under rule 129 and not rule 118.


At this juncture, the representative of Uruguay said she had not been present for vote and would like to indicate for the record that she would have voted against the motion.


As the Committee moved to take action on the text as a whole, the representative of Singapore said that, by rule 129, she would like to request a paragraph vote on operative paragraph 1, noting that those opposed to her motion were acting in contrary to the principle that “all proposals should be acted on and voted on”.  In response, the CHAIR said that the motion by the representative of Barbados under rule 129 had been rejected, and, as such, the procedure should not be undertaken yet again.


The representative of Singapore then argued that she had failed to see how the proposal of Barbados was related to her proposal on operative paragraph 1, and that the decision taken on the motion by Barbados could not be applied to her request for a vote.  She then resubmitted her request to act on her proposal, and asked further that the Committee begin hearing from two speakers for her proposal, and two speakers against.


The representative of Barbados also reiterated that his proposal was distinct from Singapore’s, and also agreed that the result of that vote could not be applied to Singapore’s proposal.  The CHAIR acknowledged that he might have applied the ruling too broadly, and gave due recognition to the Committee’s right to carry out a separate procedure on operative paragraph 1.


The representative of Mexico, raising a point of order, said that the proposal by the representative of Barbados had been clear, and had been made under rule 129, which had been duly rejected.  The rules of procedure say that the Committee should proceed to a vote on the resolution as a whole.  He said the representative of Singapore was seeking to apply the same rule to the resolution as had the representative of Barbados, which the Committee had already rejected.  The representative of Chile said he agreed with the representative of Mexico.


The representative of Singapore said that “hope springs eternal” and she asked, once more, that the Committee hold a vote on operative paragraph 1 of the draft, which was a different proposal than the one made by Barbados.


The CHAIR informed the Committee that, under rule 129, delegations did indeed have the right to vote on separate paragraphs of a draft resolution.


The representative of France, seeking to clarify the situation, asked for an explanation of what exactly had been voted upon by the Committee already.  The SECRETARY informed delegates that the vote just held had been on the motion proposed by Barbados and opposed by Mexico.  The Committee had taken that vote in accordance with rule 129 of the rules of procedure.  Following that vote, Singapore asked for a vote on a different paragraph of the resolution.  Unless a delegation objected to the proposal put forward by Singapore, the Committee would move to take action on operative paragraph 1.  Should a delegation object, the Committee would then have to vote on the motion put forward by Singapore.  As he understood the situation, no delegation had yet put forward an official objection to the proposal by Singapore.


The representative of Chile said that his delegation opposed the proposal from Singapore.


The CHAIR, in accordance with the rules of procedure, opened the floor to allow two delegates to speak in favour of the motion, and two to speak against.


On a point of order, Costa Rica’s delegate suggested that the interpretation of the procedure was perhaps incorrect, since the Committee had already made a decision not to vote on separate parts of the text.


The CHAIR said his understanding of the rules of procedure was that it would be necessary to repeat the process if a delegation so insisted.


The representative of Costa Rica asked for greater clarification on what exactly the Committee would be voting on.


On a point of order, the representative of the Sudan said now was not the time to make general statements.  Instead, the Committee should move directly to hearing representatives speaking in favour and against the motion.


The CHAIR informed the representative of the Sudan that it was necessary to hear all points of order before proceeding and, as such, gave the floor to the representative of New Zealand, speaking on a point of order.  She referred to the Chair’s original interpretation of the rules of procedure, including rule 81, and asked why the Committee must vote again on a motion, as it had already defeated a similar one.


The SECRETARY of the Committee explained that rule 81 was not applicable in the current situation since the proposal put forward by Singapore was different than the one that had been put forward by Barbados.  Had the proposal been in regard to the same paragraph, rule 81 would have been applicable.


The representative of the Sudan, speaking in favour of the motion, said that many delegations had proposed amendments to operative paragraph 1 during consultations, but those proposals had been “completely ignored” by the co-sponsors.


On a point of order, the representative of Guinea-Bissau asked for Sudan’s delegate to refrain from explaining his position; delegates should simply state whether they were for or against the motion.


The CHAIR asked for all delegates to keep their statements brief, in light of time constraints.  Continuing, the representative of the Sudan said he supported the motion because proposals to amend the paragraph had been rejected during consultation.  He appealed to all delegations to reconsider their positions.


The representative of Barbados, also speaking in support of the motion proposed by Singapore, said that the co-sponsors of the draft had often “sermonized” about the need to hear opposing voices on other issues and they were now ignoring that principled position.  Honest attempts to rebalance the draft had not been registered during the consultative process, and it was necessary now to rebalance that text.


The representatives of Monaco and Switzerland both spoke against the motion for division proposed by Singapore, and urged the Committee to vote against it, as well.


The motion was rejected by a vote of 88 against to 55 in favour, with 24 abstentions (Annex IV).


The Committee then took action on the draft as a whole.


The representative of Colombia, a co-sponsor, said he would vote in favour of the draft, as his country had at the previous session.  Its decision to co-sponsor the text was in line with its Constitution, under which the death penalty had been abolished, and was also in line with the provisions of international instruments ratified by his Government, by which it sought to ensure the protection and promotion of human rights, including the right to life.  He supported the essential objective of the text to move towards the abolition of the death penalty.  To that end, countries should bear in mind whether in fact the practice was useful in deterring crimes, as well as bear in mind the negative and irreversible effects of capital punishment.  Further, adopting the draft resolution would allow progress to be made on the issue in a multilateral setting.  The co-sponsors had chosen a short resolution with a procedural focus that had not include substantive controversial content, as included in resolution 62/149, but yet would allow for continued follow-up of that resolution from last year.  It was for that reason that he had opposed the proposed amendments to that text.


The representative of Iran said the issue was one of criminal justice.  Abolition of the death penalty was not a matter of human rights and, indeed, international instruments did not request it to be abolished, but allowed its application for serious crimes.  Every State should be able to choose a justice system within its domestic jurisdiction.  The United Nations Charter barred interference in domestic matters.  The legal justice system was based on cultural, regional and social particularities; hence, the diversity of judicial systems, which should be respected.  The draft ignored such principles.  For that reason, he would vote against it.


The representative of Malaysia said he had been disappointed that the Committee’s important work on a range of different human rights questions had been distracted by a resolution on the issue of the death penalty on which there was no international consensus.  There should not be any attempt by a country to impose their viewpoint on that issue onto other countries.  While his country respected the decision by some to voluntarily abolish the death penalty and by other countries to apply a moratorium, it was concerned at attempts to offer the same respect to those countries that still maintained it.


He said he had been prepared to engage with the co-sponsors in an open spirit of dialogue and constructive engagement.  In reality, that had not taken place.  During the informal consultations, a number of delegations had expressed a desire for the text to be amended to strike a balance over the differing views.  But, the co-sponsors had not circulated those amendments in a compilation draft, and it became clear that the co-sponsors had not wanted to negotiate the text.  Thus, the Committee faced a process that was forced upon countries, and where changes made on the draft had not addressed the concerns of some countries.  Those countries had provided clear, fair, non-hostile amendments reflecting the purposes and principles of the Charter and of international cooperation.  Those amendments were positive in nature, given to enhance the text, so that there could be the widest possible support from all countries, regardless of where they stood, whether they were co-sponsors or not.


He said the co-sponsors have painted those amendments as undermining the spirit of the resolution, when those amendments would have brought balance to this text.  The international community, as a whole, was not ready for the issue; and he was disappointed that even deferring this question to a later stage -- to allow more time for countries to evolve their views on this question -- had been greeted with negativity.  For his country, the death penalty was a criminal justice issue, applied only for the most serious of crimes and only through a judicial process that included the right to appeal to courts of a higher jurisdiction and the right to seek pardon or commutation of the sentence.  Other countries should not make assumptions based on perceived trends to decide how they wish other countries to evolve in their own legal systems.  In that regard, he opposed the resolution.


The representative of the Bahamas noted that proponents of a world government would see a global political authority as a definitive solution to human problems, by adopting measures designed to move humanity towards world federalism.  There were some that saw that it would be unrealistic to assume that the creation of a world government would result in stability and perpetual peace.  Opponents of the death penalty would have the world believe that, if countries upheld strictly their human rights obligations and abolished the death penalty, society would run smoothly.


Yet, Member States were members of a world organization, not a world government with supreme legislative, executive, adjudicative and enforcement powers.  Instead, it was made up of countries with distinct cultures and political and judicial systems.  As such, it must be careful not to employ overarching decisions and measures that would affect the sovereignty of States.  She also noted that the co-sponsors would have the Committee believe that the request to remove the word “endorsing” and “stakeholders” had been made by those who had proposed amendments two days ago, but, in reality, it had been a request from among the co-sponsors themselves.  Those amendments had not been attempts to delay action, but had been offered on good faith to enhance the text.


Relating the Secretary-General’s report, she expressed disagreement with it for having classified countries as abolitionist, abolitionist for ordinary crimes, or retentionist.  Barbados had not applied the death penalty in 25 years, but was considered retentionist; yet 10 countries were considered abolitionist for ordinary crimes, but still maintained the death penalty in exceptional circumstances.  Bahamas was not governed by stakeholders or by regional organizations.  It had always considered the death penalty a matter of criminal justice.  For that reason, she would vote against the draft.


The representative of Egypt said that, during the course of Third Committee deliberations, members of some delegations had highlighted their rejection of the selective quotation of the United Nations Charter.  That was ironic, since many of those members supported the draft resolution before the Committee, which was, in itself, selective in content and in scope.  It dealt with only one element of the right to life, ignoring other elements, such as the right to life of the unborn child.  In addition, the draft claimed that there was a trend towards abolition, but that claim had been based on unauthenticated information included in the Secretary-General’s report.  All rules were not suitable for application at the same level, in all societies, and at all times.  The issue before the Committee now should have been dealt with in the Human Rights Council, and under the wider issue of the right to life.  If, in that forum, a political will was sufficiently demonstrated to act on the matter, amendments should then be made to the relevant provisions of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.


A comprehensive process of debate and negotiations at the multilateral level would demonstrate a sincere attempt at dialogue, he continued.  It was regrettable that, in the Third Committee, some delegates rejoiced openly over the rejection of amendments to the draft “by sheer numbers”.  The draft claimed that there was a trend to the abolition of the death penalty, but the only trend that he could see was a departure from “all that we hold sacred” in the Organization.  His delegation was obliged to vote against the resolution, and he urged others to do the same.


The representative of Croatia expressed her delegation’s satisfaction over the fact that the text would be voted on as a whole and thanked all those delegates who had made such a situation possible.  The majority votes on the amendments spoke for itself, and she urged delegates to show even greater support when voting for the draft resolution.


Sudan’s delegate said the death penalty was an issue that was “very sensitive and fraught with problems and controversies”.  The same divisions that had existed in previous discussions were being seen again this year.  Some delegates had tried to push the situation in a direction that did not respect the sovereignty of States.  The membership had not come to an agreement on the death penalty and opinions remained “quite divided”, despite attempts made in the past to abolish capital punishment.  Implementation of the death penalty was a matter for States and could not be solved within the Third Committee.


The Sudan fully respected the points of view of States that had chosen to put a moratorium in place on the use of the death penalty or to abolish it entirely.  At the same time, those countries should respect the decision made by States like his own, which imposed the death penalty in response to the most serious and extreme crimes.  The issue should not be politicized and greater flexibility should be shown, in order to attain a balanced resolution.  The draft and the principles contained therein should be rejected, especially considering the fact that the United Nations was not the ideal venue to address the matter.  The Sudan had, and would always, continue to vote against the text.


The representative of Myanmar said that any attempt by a country to impose its values on another country, especially in regard to its judicial system, was clearly against the United Nations Charter.  Since proposed amendments to the draft had been rejected, his delegation would vote against the text of the draft resolution before the Committee.


The representative of Guyana expressed regret over the “demonstrable lack of consideration” shown by the co-sponsors of the draft, who had refused to build a greater balance into the text of the draft.  There was no international consensus on the death penalty, and the right of States to come to their own conclusions on the issue should be upheld and respected.  A decision on the matter was within the domestic realm of States, and the draft represented an interference in domestic affairs.  In Guyana, the death penalty enjoyed strong support by the general public, and external factors should not force a national change.  As such, Guyana would vote against the resolution.


The representative of Barbados, by reaffirming resolution 62/149, said that the draft assumed “substantive weight” and could no longer be considered a procedural resolution.  Barbados respected the sovereign right of other countries to abolish the death penalty and asked for the same courtesy to be accorded to those that did not.  Barbados was a stable and vibrant democracy, and was proud of its human rights record.  The inclusion of the death penalty in its penal code had been inherited from one of the main co-sponsors of the draft before the Committee.  It could only be applied following exhaustive appeals and under certain conditions, as part of a “rational, structured, and sound” system of laws, check and balances.  The retention of the death penalty was not contrary to the provisions of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and capital punishment remained legal under international law, as long as it was not applied arbitrarily or summarily.  The question of the death penalty was one of criminal justice and under domestic jurisdiction.  In light of those factors, Barbados would vote against the draft.


The representative of Thailand said that it was the sovereign right of States to come to a decision on the use of the death penalty, and all States should show respect for the decisions of others.  The Thai public viewed capital punishment as an effective deterrent and its judicial system allowed for petitions to be made up to the level of the Supreme Court, as well as commutations of sentences.  In Thailand, the death penalty was reserved for only the most serious crimes and under certain conditions.  Indeed, since 2003, no execution had been carried out by the Government.


The representative of Yemen, aligning himself made on behalf of the Organization of the Islamic Conference by Uganda the previous day, emphasized the lack of international consensus on the issue.  It was a contentious issue, as demonstrated by the Third Committee deliberations.  Each country had the right to determine its own legal system, without interference from other States.  Countries should not attempt to impose their views and values on other States, and that held true in regard to a moratorium on the death penalty, which was a matter of criminal justice, within a State’s jurisdiction.  The draft resolution only reflected one point of view and, since the proposed amendments to the draft had been rejected, his delegation was obliged to vote against the draft.


Papua New Guinea’s representative explained that the death penalty in his country was reserved for only the most heinous crimes and the crime of treason.  During 33 years of independence, there had only been a handful of death penalties handed out, and all of those had been commuted to life imprisonment by the Supreme Court.  Such a situation was a testament to the independent judicial system in the country and its continued development.  Changing laws regarding the death penalty was a national affair, and the national parliament had been invested with the right to make or amend laws, if it so chose.  As such, his delegation would oppose the proposed resolution.


The representative of India pointed out that each State had the right to develop its own legal system and to decide on punishments for criminals.  In India, the death penalty was “an exception that was exercised in the rarest of rare cases”.  The right to a fair hearing, the presumption of innocence, and the right to be heard by a higher court were all provided for by Indian law.  At the same time, strict conditions needed to be met before any death sentence could be handed down.  The draft resolution before the Committee sought to promote a moratorium on the use of the death penalty, with a view to abolition.  Since that went against Indian statutory law, his delegation was obliged to vote against it.


The representative of Nigeria said, at the Assembly’s previous session, his Government had stressed its profound appreciation for the sanctity of life.  Its use of the death penalty had been rare in recent years.  The death penalty was a criminal justice question, and it was the inalienable right of every country to choose its own judicial system without interference from others.  Furthermore, the death penalty was a deterrent to hardened criminals who would stop at nothing to snuff out the lives of other citizens.  He would vote against the resolution, as his Government had done last year.


The representative of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines said that Chapter I of the national Constitution had stated that no person would be intentionally deprived of his life, except when it was determined by a court of law in relation to a crime.  The country’s Constitution, as bequeathed by the United Kingdom, affirmed the legitimacy of the death penalty within the context of his country, and had been recognized by countless courts, including in Britain.  The practice was supported by an overwhelming majority of the citizens in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, as revealed through polls and so on.  It was limited to the most serious crimes and was rarely carried out.


It was insensitive for supporters of the text to foist a view upon his country that would undercut the desire of its citizens, in a manner that demonstrated scant regard for the principles of the United Nations Charter and of the sovereign rights of States, he continued.  Supporters of the resolution had brushed aside attempts to add balance to the text, and had not shown respect for the context that informed the decision of States that wished to retain the practice.  A quick perusal of co-sponsors revealed that many of those States had used the punishment in ways that had resulted in public revulsion and which, in turn, had led to demands for it to be abolished, which stood in contrast to the situation in his contrary.  Moreover, the world had moved towards abolition without the assistance of last year’s resolution, and so it was curious to see some countries suspend certain bedrock principles to acknowledge pre-exiting international momentum.  The resolution could not wish away the reality that those with a superlative record in human rights had decided to retain the death penalty.  He believed the resolution would set an unfortunate precedent, noting that many punishments and behaviours that were permitted in some countries were viewed as repulsive by others.  He demanded that respect be shown for the right to apply the death penalty responsibly, if the population so chose.  He would vote against the text.


The representative of Syria said that choosing to end the death penalty was a domestic matter, and she would vote against the draft.  She believed its main objective contradicted the basic principles of the United Nations Charter on non-interference.


The Committee then voted to approve resolution L.19/Rev.1 by a vote of 105 in favour to 48 against, with 31 abstentions (Annex V).


Speaking in explanation of vote after action, the representative of the United States said her Government recognized that the text’s supporters had principled positions, but added that her country would urge them to focus any future resolutions on actual human rights violations.  Other delegations had pointed out that international law did not prohibit the practice.  The International Covenant of Civil and Political Rights permitted its use for the most serious crimes, pursuant its application by a competent court and within the application of due process.  The Untied States urged all Governments that continued to employ the death penalty to do so in conformity with human rights obligations and not to use it in an extrajudicial or arbitrary manner.


The representative of Morocco said he had abstained from the vote, as his Government had done last year, because his country already had a de facto moratorium, despite the rise in crimes and terrorism.  Some reforms had been carried out according to the King’s will to strengthen human rights in his country, leading to judicial adjustments making it harder to use the death penalty.  The Government followed closely the debates taking place in Morocco on the subject, involving national institutions and political parties, among others, where the matter was examined from its legal, religious and sociological dimensions.


The representative of Singapore said she deeply regretted the passage of a resolution that so many countries were not able to support.  There was no international consensus on the issue.  Many delegations were uncomfortable with the insistence by some to force the issue at the United Nations.  She rejected the notion that countries could interfere with the choice of others to determine which judicial penalties would be meted out.  She noted that some co-sponsors had not shown respect for the concept of national sovereignty, although they had argued for that principle elsewhere in the Committee.  The same applied with the use of procedural motions.  That attitude amounted to a hypocrisy.  The issue of the death penalty was one of most divisive issues before the Organization, and had taken the Committee away from a search for solutions to common objectives.  It was sad that many who preached about the importance of human rights had forgotten the importance of showing respect for differences.


The representative of Lebanon said the death penalty was part of its penal code, as a punishment applied in truly unique situations to deal with severe crimes.  But she acknowledged that it was time to address the issue in an open and inclusive manner, and she thanked the co-sponsors for bringing the issue to the attention of the General Assembly.  Her country had participated in the three informals and had submitted several proposals to help bridge the gap between countries.  She would have preferred to have supported the draft, since her Government was in favour of a healthy discussion on abolishing the death penalty at some point.  Her country was about to start a debate on the topic, and a draft law on the practice was recently presented to the Government by the Ministry of Justice.  In light of those developments, she had abstained from the vote.


The representative of Egypt said he had voted against the resolution.  Nevertheless, he believed that it was the obligation of all States to ensure that the death penalty would be applied to the most serious crimes pursuant to its application by a competent court and within the application of due process.  He had been of the view that international efforts should be focused on strengthening international commitment to make sure that no individuals were arbitrarily deprived of their life.  As with the previous resolution on the death penalty, the current text was aimed at reinterpreting the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, in light of the developments in certain countries and as an attempt to impose a narrow view of the issue on the general membership.  It had only looked at a single aspect of the right to life, and was an example of selectivity.  Moreover, the text overlooked the fact that introducing changes to negotiated legal instruments should be carried out through negotiations, which process should not be superseded by a General Assembly resolution.  Ignoring that principle would create a precedent in international law that was detrimental to world efforts to promote human rights.  The legal and social aspects of the discussion should be addressed through a debate on the larger issue of the right to life, at the multilateral level.


The representative of Ghana, having abstained, said that Ghana’s Constitution guaranteed that the death penalty would only be applied in the most serious cases.  Indeed, over the past two decades, there had been no recorded cases of executions, since superior courts had granted pardons.


The representative of Japan said that her delegation had voted against the draft resolution because the implementation of the death penalty was a national decision, which should be made with the specific needs of each nation in mind.  In Japan, the majority of the public believed that the most vicious criminals should receive the death sentence.  For that reason, it was difficult for the Government to move towards the abolition of the death penalty at the current time, and that was why the Japanese delegation had voted against the draft.


The representative of Bangladesh said the national criminal justice system in his country restricted the application to the most serious and heinous crimes.  In addition, there was an elaborate, exhaustive and transparent legal process, and adequate measures for redress were in place.  A moratorium on the use of the death penalty, with a view to its abolition, required a comprehensive appraisal of the international justice system and, as that had not yet been undertaken, Bangladesh had voted against the draft.


The representative of Viet Nam said her delegation had abstained from voting, based on a belief that each country had the sovereign right to choose its own legal measures, as appropriate.  In Viet Nam, the death penalty was seen as an indispensable last resort, necessary at the current stage of national development.  However, its application was restricted to only the most serious offences and was not applicable to certain members of society.  Eventually, should a number of proposed policies be adopted, Viet Nam would likely move towards the abolition of the death penalty.


The representative of Bhutan said that, while Bhutan did not have the death penalty, it recognized the sovereign right of Member States to determine their own criminal justice systems, and its voting on the proposed resolution and its amendments had been guided by such a stance.


The representative of China said his delegation had voted against the resolution, and the General Assembly was not the right forum for such a discussion.  Neither the United Nations nor any individual country was authorized to intervene on matters within domestic jurisdiction.  Any discussion on the issue in the General Assembly -- a highly political forum -- could only complicate and politicize the matter further and it would not help bridge the current divide.  The death penalty was not prohibited under international law, as long as it was applied in response to the most serious crimes.  Each country, thus, had the right to determine what kinds of penalties to enforce and when a moratorium on the use of the death penalty, or its abolition, was necessary.  In China, the death penalty was only applicable in the case of the most heinous crimes and only under certain conditions.  As well, the Supreme Court of China had the final say on its application.


The representative of Saudi Arabia said each State had the right to choose their systems of justice and the draft resolution meddled in the matters of the State.  For that reason, Saudi Arabia had voted against the draft.


The representative of Swaziland said that the draft resolution was an infringement on the inalienable right of States to choose their own cultural and legal systems, without interference.  In Swaziland, the death penalty was considered a criminal justice issue, as stipulated in its Constitution, and every country had a sovereign right to decide on its own system of criminal justice.  Any national decision on the death penalty would be taken in accordance with the will of its citizens and, for that reason, her delegation had decided to vote against the draft resolution.


The representative of Benin said his delegation had chosen to be part of a group moving towards the elimination of the death penalty, in accordance with the principles of the United Nations Charter and bearing in mind the sovereign right of States to make their own juridical decisions.  The content of the draft resolution should, therefore, be interpreted with the Charter in mind.  He added that the issue of the death penalty should not only be addressed in the current forum, but also at regional and subregional levels, to allow issues such as cross-border crime to be more effectively considered.  Among the proposed amendments that had been rejected, there were some that were relevant and their adoption could have garnered more support among Member States.  However, each “camp” in the Committee had chosen not to move away from their positions and delegates had thus failed to reach consensus.  In the future, he invited all parties to be “a bit more open” when considering the issue.


The representative of Botswana expressed his delegation’s disappointment over the outcome of the final vote and over the fact that the proposed amendments, which would have “lessened hostility,” had all been rejected.  For Botswana, the death penalty was a criminal justice matter, within the sovereign right of the State.  He appealed to those who relentlessly pursued the “misuse of the United Nations General Assembly” on the issue, asking them to refrain from acting similarly in the future.  For more than 40 years, the Government of Botswana had properly enforced the provisions of its criminal justice system to protect and defend its citizens.   Countries such as his own were troubled by States who refused to respect the rights of others.  International law did not suggest that the death penalty was not permissible, though it did note that the killing of innocent persons was not allowed.  Botswana remained open to ongoing discussions, conducted on the basis of respect and in conformity with international law.


Clarifying her delegation’s position on the draft, which had not been recorded during the vote, the representative of Djibouti asked that the report of the Third Committee reflect that her delegation would have abstained.


The representative of Slovakia also asked that the record reflect Slovakia’s intention to vote against the motion for separate voting on operative paragraph 1, as proposed by Singapore.


The Committee then moved to take action on the draft resolution on national institutions for the promotion and protection of human rights (document A/C.3/63/L.23), which contained no programme budget implications.


The representative of Germany, the main sponsor of the draft, said that the draft was the result of several rounds of consultations and bilateral negotiations.  He made a number of minor oral amendments to operative paragraphs 10, 12 and 24 and thanked all those who had contributed to the drafting of the text.  The draft, as amended, was a balanced text, and he expressed sincere hope for its adoption by consensus.


The Committee approved the draft, without a vote.


The Chair then moved to the draft resolution entitled effective promotion of the Declaration on the Rights of Persons Belonging to National or Ethnic, Religious and Linguistic Minorities (document A/C.3/63/L.25/Rev.1), which contained no programme budget implications.


The representative of Austria, the draft’s main sponsor, said her delegation had presented draft resolutions on minority issues on a regular basis, ever since 1992.  Meeting the aspirations of persons belonging to minority groups contributed to social peace and stability, and enriched societies, in general.  The effective promotion of the United Nations Declaration on the rights of those persons was of particular importance.  Over the previous weeks, there had been broad consultations on the draft and, as a result of those consultations, Austria had tabled a revised version of the draft.  The number of co-sponsors of the draft demonstrated widespread and cross-regional support.  After making one minor oral revision to preambular paragraph 1, she expressed hope that, with that minor change, the draft would be adopted by consensus.


The Committee approved the draft, without a vote.


Speaking after action, the representative of the United States said her delegation had joined consensus on the draft, after extensive negotiations.  However, there were a number of points that needed to be mentioned in the context of the resolution.  First, she pointed out that the United States was not a member of the Human Rights Council since, like its predecessor, the Council had failed to prevent political alliances from getting in the way of “telling the simple truth” about human rights violations.  Also, in terms of operative paragraph 5, which encouraged States to take certain actions in follow-up to the World Conference against Racism, she said the understanding of the United States was that the paragraph referred only to States that chose to engage in such follow-up activities.  The United States worked hard to promote the rights of minority groups within its borders and, in closing, she said it was prepared to work with the international community to do the same on a global scale.


The Committee then moved to take action on the draft resolution on missing persons (document A/C.3/63/L.36), which contained no programme budget implications.


The representative of Azerbaijan, the main sponsor of the draft, said that several rounds of informal consultations had been convened, creating an opportunity for open and constructive dialogue among all interested parties.  All previous resolutions on the issue had received broad support from Member States and such support had helped to draw the attention of the international community to the phenomenon at hand.  One amendment had been made to preambular paragraph 3 of the text, as a result of consultations undertaken since the introduction of the draft.  The amendment would change the word “welcoming” to “acknowledging”.  With that oral revision in mind, he requested the broad support of Member States for the adoption of the draft.


The Committee approved the draft, as orally amended, without a vote.


Moving to the draft resolution on the respect for the right to universal freedom of travel and the vital importance of family reunification (document A/C.3/63/L.43), the CHAIR informed delegates that the draft contained no programme budget implications.


The representative of Cuba, the main sponsor, said the draft resolution would reaffirm the importance of the reunification of migrant families, which was an important factor in international migration.  It also noted with great concern the continued adoption of measures that affected the reunification of families or the flow of remittances to countries of origin.  The draft would call on States to allow the free flow of financial remittances and to ensure family reunification for legal migrants.  In closing, she urged delegations that had not already co-sponsored the draft to consider doing so.


The CHAIR informed the Committee that a recorded vote had been requested.  Cuba’s delegate asked to know which delegation had requested the vote and the Chair informed her that the delegation from the United States had made the request.


The representative of the United States said her delegation would vote against the draft for a number of reasons.  Specifically, the reference to the “universal freedom of travel” could be interpreted as an interference in the sovereign right of States to decide who would or would not be allowed to enter its border.  As well, there was no right to family reunification under international law and, even in practice and in national law, no country represented in the Committee room today recognized that right.


The United States fully supported humane, orderly and legal migration and, in fact, 23 per cent of migrants across the globe were living in the United States, she said.  Her Government, acting under the belief that the family was a basic unit of society, had generous immigration policies in place that encouraged family reunification.  She added that there was also no right to send financial remittances.  Though such remittances could have a significant and positive impact on the families of migrants in their countries of origins, States held the power to determine the scope of their economic relations with other States.


The draft was approved by a recorded vote of 118 in favour to 3 against ( Israel, Palau, United States), with 60 abstentions (Annex VI).


Speaking in explanation of vote, after the vote, the representative of Mexico said the obligation to respect family unity was a basic human right, and States should abstain from taking action to separate families or to prevent family reunification.  Mexico viewed the right to family unity as a right accorded to all human beings, regardless of their status.  Therefore, refusing to allow reunification could be seen as an interference in that basic right.  At the same time, she underscored the role of remittances as an important source of income for those remaining in countries of origin.


In a general statement, the representative of the Philippines welcomed the focused manner in which the draft attacked the issue at hand.  That issue was even more relevant in today’s world, where factors such as climate change were increasingly driving the movement of peoples.  A comprehensive approach to the issue must include sensitivity to the issues that affected migrants and their families, including facilitating and respecting family reunification and the free flow of financial remittances.


The Committee then turned to a draft resolution on improving the coordination of efforts against trafficking in persons (document A/C.3/63/L.9/Rev.1), which the Secretary of the Committee said would not entail any additional appropriation for the 2008-2009 biennium.


The representative of Belarus, its main sponsor, made a small insertion to operative paragraph 5 of the text, adding the words “to continue its efforts” after the word “Governments”.  He said the revised draft was the result of compromise on several important issues, in particular regarding the process of considering the advisability of a global plan of action on trafficking.  Delegations had different positions on the advisability of such a plan and how to move forward with the consideration of such advisability, but had agreed to continue dialogue.  That consideration was to be facilitated by a background paper to be prepared by the Secretary-General by June 2009.


The representative of Mauritius, speaking on behalf of the African Group, said the draft was possibly one of the most important ones of this session, especially given that trafficking in persons presented a challenge to regional stability.  The draft touched on the need to establish stronger relations between humanitarian workers and political interests, and addressed the wide range of crimes, that, with their cumulative impact on society, posed a threat to peace and security.  Mindful that Africa was a major region of origin for trafficked persons, he voiced hope the international community could better coordinate its efforts to fight one of the worst forms of organized crime.  He said the proposed informal consultations at the General Assembly on the advisability of adopting a United Nations action plan, as supported by leaders in Africa, could ensure a more coordinated approach to that question.  He said he understood that the consultation would be held under the auspices of the President of the General Assembly.


The representative of France, speaking on behalf of the European Union and associated States, expressed gratitude to those that had participated in the negotiations on the text.  While the European Union was pleased to join consensus, it was not yet convinced that a global plan of action would add value to existing strategies.  He said the creation of a new instrument could divert energy away from implementation of existing agreements and obligations.  But, because many States had favoured having a plan of action, the European Union had agreed to study the matter more closely.  The European Union underscored the importance of consulting experts in Vienna, including those serving on the Commission on Crime Prevention, as well as those working alongside the Conference of States Parties to the Convention on Transnational Organized Crime, for example.  Based on those contributions, as well as the Secretary-General’s background paper, it would be possible for Member States to carry out a substantive debate on combating the phenomenon through a global plan of action or any other means.


The Committee then approved the draft resolution without a vote, as orally amended.


Speaking after action, the representative of the United States said her Government remained actively committed to the issue and in working bilaterally and multilaterally with other Governments to address it.  She said she appreciated the desire of Member States to work collaboratively.  The Protocol to suppress trafficking in persons deserved credit for spurring the creation of 150 new, or amendments to, pieces of legislation and the increase in trafficking convictions between 2003 and 2007.  But, much remained to be done to increase prosecutions and to render assistance to victims.  The new resolution acknowledged a need for broad international cooperation, including the involvement of civil society and businesses, to combat the phenomenon.


She urged all States to participate in the work of the Conference of States Parties to the Convention on Transnational Crime, especially its working group on enhancing implementation of the trafficking in persons Protocol.  The way forward was through fostering support for regional plans of action and in strengthening policy and programmes of the Inter-agency Coordination Group.  The discussion on the advisability of a global plan of action should not begin until the Secretary-General’s background paper was published, which would include data from all stakeholders.  She regretted that no explicit mention had been made to the Conference on Parties to the Transnational Organized Crime Convention, given its treaty-based mandate to implement the trafficking in persons Protocol, as stipulated in article 32 of Convention.  Also, a global plan of action could prove overly broad and divert resources from tasks already at hand.


Having heard the last statement on that issue, the Committee then took note of two reports of the Secretary-General on assistance in implementing the universal conventions and protocols related to terrorism (document A/63/89) and on improving the coordination of efforts against trafficking in persons (document A/63/90).


Introduction of Draft Resolutions


The Committee then heard the introduction of three draft resolutions, including a draft resolution on the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (document A/C.3/63/L.53/Rev.1).


Introducing the draft, and speaking also on behalf of Slovenia, the representative of Belgium said that the General Assembly adopted resolutions on the subject every two years and, by doing so, reaffirmed the importance of the Convention and support for its follow-up Committee.  It would also have States ratify the Convention, where possible.  In 2008, for the first time ever, the President of that Committee had delivered a statement to the Third Committee in person.  In order to ensure that such a situation would continue, the resolution would have the President return to the Third Committee for an interactive dialogue with delegates, in the sixty-fifth session.


Continuing, she said that the principal objective of the resolution was to respond to the demand made by the Committee to increase its meeting time.  The International Convention was, currently, one of the most ratified treaties, and the Committee was required to consider an increasing number of country reports.  Yet, the Committee had only six weeks of meeting time each year to examine all of those reports, which was very little in comparison with the time given to the other Committees.  Consequently, the General Assembly must respond to the request for more time and authorize a supplementary week of meetings for each session, beginning in August 2009 and until 2011.


By the terms of the text, the Assembly would be called on to re-evaluate the situation again in its sixty-fifth session, based on a report from the United NationsHigh Commissioner for Human Rights.  That proposal was a compromise solution between delegations who had wished for extra meetings to be added permanently and those who had not wished for any extra weeks of meetings to be added at all.  She hoped that delegates, as in the past, would agree to adopt the resolution by consensus.


The representative of Antigua and Barbuda, speaking on behalf of the “Group of 77” developing countries and China, introduced the draft resolution on global efforts for the total elimination of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance and the comprehensive implementation of and follow-up to the Durban Declaration and Programme of Action (document A/C.3/63/L.51/Rev.1), which was largely an updated draft based on the previous resolution.


She said the current draft focused on bringing the decisions of the Preparatory Committee for the Durban Review Conference to the Assembly for adoption and was divided into five sections, based on the Committee’s work.  It reiterated the main principle not to reopen or renegotiate the Durban Declaration or Programme of Action.  She drew attention to one important paragraph at the end of the draft, which focused on the need for future intersessional meetings of the Human Rights Council on the follow-up to the World Conference, to be scheduled in such a manner so as not to clash or overlap with the meetings of the General Assembly on the matter.


Introducing the draft resolution on the Committee on the Rights of the Child (document A/C.3/63/L.46*), the representative of New Zealand said that, with near universal ratification of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the Committee had to deal with an increasingly large workload.  Currently, there was a backlog of treaty body reports, which could result in some reports not being considered until three or four years after submission.  There was a broad support to address the Committee’s request to deal with that backlog, and ongoing consultations towards that end would likely result in a new, revised text to be acted upon by the Committee.


Action on Draft Resolutions


The Committee then resumed action on outstanding draft resolutions, beginning with the draft on a new international humanitarian order (document A/C.3/63/L.55), which contained no programme budget implications.


Following an oral amendment read out by the Secretariat, the representative of Jordan, the main sponsor of the draft, expressed hope that the draft would be adopted by consensus.


The Committee then approved the draft, as orally revised, without a vote.


Moving to the draft resolution on the implementation of the Outcome of the World Summit for Social Development and of the twenty-fourth special session of the General Assembly (document A/C.3/63/L.5/Rev.1), the CHAIR informed the Committee that the draft contained no programme budget implications.


The representative of the draft’s main sponsor, Antigua and Barbuda, made a number of minor oral revisions to preambular paragraphs 7 and 10, and operative paragraphs 17, 25, 41, 44 and 49.  She also reversed the order of preambular paragraphs 4 and 5.  The text, overall, reflected the contributions of Member States during several weeks of consultations.  She expressed gratitude for the contributions made and commended the draft to the Committee for adoption by consensus.


The Committee then approved the draft, as orally revised, without a vote.


Speaking after action, the representative of the United States said that her delegation had joined the consensus, despite concerns over the use of Committee resolutions to rework and redefine development language that had been carefully developed in Monterrey.  In particular, she drew attention to references to official development assistance included in the draft.  Work was hindered, not helped, by such references in Third Commitments resolutions.  A narrow focus on official development assistance overlooked other important international financing sources, such as private investment flows.  Indeed, according to reports, a staggering $647 billion in private investment capital flowed into developing economies in 2006.  An obsession with official development assistance in the resolution undermined previous consensus on the issue, especially when it excluded other elements such as critical governance, effectiveness issues, or the specific needs of recipients.


The Committee then turned to the draft resolution on the future operation of the International Research and Training Institute for the Advancement of Women (document A/C.3/63/L.14/Rev.1).


The representative of Antigua and Barbuda, its main sponsor, said the text reflected agreement reached after several weeks of informal consultations and commended it for approval by consensus.


The draft was then approved without a vote.


Next, the Committee took up the draft on the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination (document A/C.3/63/L.52*).


As the representative of Egypt, its main sponsor, was reading out the list of additional co-sponsors, the representative of Greece raised a point of order regarding his incorrect reference to the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, which was duly noted and corrected by Egypt’s representative.


He then delivered a brief statement regarding the draft he had tabled, saying that, for over four decades, Palestinian people had suffered under Israeli occupation, and were denied their basic human rights and the right to self-determination, compelling his Government to present the following draft resolution yet again.  He said his country would continue to call for the fulfilment of that right until it was fully realized.  It was hoped that countries would approve the draft by consensus, thereby sending a strong message on that subject.  The Palestinian people should be allowed to realize their long-overdue right to self- determination on their own land and in their own sovereign and viable State, with East Jerusalem as its capital.


The representative of France, speaking on behalf of the European Union and associated States, reiterated the Palestinian peoples’ right to self-determination, which implied a possible establishment of a sovereign State according to the Quartet Road Map -- a viable, independent, democratic, fully sovereign Palestinian State living in peace and security, and enjoying territorial integrity, side by side with Israel and its other neighbours.  That result was best for the security of the State of Israel.  He voiced hope that the process that began at Annapolis would allow an equitable solution to the conflict in the Middle East to emerge, and invited the relevant parties to continue their dialogue.  The European Union underscored that the process of negotiation be accompanied by closer cooperation on the ground, and for Israel to ensure improvement to daily life of Palestinians, as based on the agreement on access of movement and other accords.


The representative of Israel then asked for a recorded vote.


In an explanation of vote before action, the representative of the United States said that her country had worked hard to support the development and legitimate political aspiration of the Palestinian people.  Its level of assistance to address the needs of Palestinian people compared favourably to the aid given to other countries.  The Government had no quarrel with the right to self-determination, and, indeed, President Bush had said that the objective was two sovereign, democratic States living side by side in peace and security.  President Abbas had also committed himself to those principles.  However, the United States could not support the resolution and others like it, because they reflected an outdated approach conceived when the solution lay solely in the United Nations.  While there was a role for the Organization, it was to support the two parties as a member of the Quartet.  Such resolutions would undermine the United Nations work in that regard.  Also, one-sided resolutions made no contribution to resolving such issues.


The draft was approved by a vote of 175 in favour to 5 against ( Israel, Marshall Islands, Micronesia (Federated States of), Palau, United States), with 5 abstentions ( Australia, Cameroon, Canada, Equatorial Guinea, Fiji) (Annex VII).


The representative of Israel said her Government fully supported the aspirations of the Palestinian people in achieving self-determination, but noted that it could only be realized by achieving a two-State solution, with a Jewish homeland of Israel alongside a Palestinian homeland.  The Israeli President had said to the General Assembly that a solution was closer than ever, and had seemed feasible in light of the Saudi proposal that had eventually evolved into an Arab peace initiative.  Other Israeli leaders further affirmed that a prosperous, viable Palestinian State was in Israel’s own interest.  Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni had participated in a high-level meeting of the Quartet two weeks ago, further confirming the country’s commitment to the peace process and establishing a Palestinian State.


She said that, while her Government was prepared to pursue that goal, the Palestinian people must also simultaneously accept the existence of an Israeli homeland for Jewish people.  Yet, Hamas terrorists had recently attacked the population in southern Israel, leading President Abbas himself to concede that such acts would destroy the dreams of self-determination.  Moreover, today’s resolution affirmed self-determination in one-sided manner without placing responsibility on the Palestinian side to ensure the safety of Israel and its citizens.


She noted that, in his last statement on the Middle East, former Secretary-General Kofi Annan had asked whether the continuous tabling of resolutions would bring tangible relief or benefit to the Palestinian people.  In that spirit, she asked the Committee to consider whether the resolution approved today would bring such benefit.  The answer was no, because real progress towards establishing a Palestinian State could only happen through bilateral negotiations.  The Annapolis process had shown signs of progress, as did the meeting two weeks ago in Sharm el Sheikh, which the resolution seemed to have ignored.  Progress would come through genuine consultation between Israel and the Palestinian people, and not through resolutions such as this one.  It was for that reason that she had called for the vote, and had voted against it.


The representative of the Federated States of Micronesia reaffirmed his delegation’s commitment to a two-State solution.  Yet, there were certain provisions included in the preambular section of the draft resolution, prejudging ongoing negotiations between the two parties, which were cause for concern.  At the same time, operative paragraph 2 of the draft could endanger the role of the United Nations on the issue.  Since neither of those paragraphs advanced the right of the Palestinian people, his delegation had voted against the draft.


Canada’s delegate expressed the strongest possible support for the Palestinian people and a solution that would see the emergence of a Palestinian State, as laid out in the Road Map of the Quartet.  Canada encouraged bilateral dialogue and negotiations towards a solution, but, due to the failure of the resolution to properly address such dialogue, Canada could not fully support the draft and it had, instead, abstained from voting.


The representative of Argentina said, notwithstanding the right of the Palestinian people to an independent and viable State, the right to self-determination required an “active subject”, which meant that people were subject to occupation, subjugation, domination and foreign exploitation, in accordance with operative paragraph 1 of General Assembly resolution 1514.  The right to self-determination should be interpreted in step with the United Nations Charter and other relevant resolutions of the United Nations.  He drew the Committee’s attention to the situation of the Malvinas and General Assembly resolution 2065 (XX), which recognized the existence of a sovereignty dispute between Argentina and the United Kingdom and stressed the need for renewed bilateral negotiations towards a just and definitive solution to the dispute.


The representative of the Observer Mission of Palestine expressed thanks and appreciation to those who voted in favour of the resolution, including Egypt and the co-sponsors of the draft.  The denial of the Palestinian peoples’ right to self-determination remained the “major crux” of the sufferings of Palestinians.  It was critical for Member States to continue to show overwhelming support for the resolution, until Palestinians were finally granted their rights.  By voting against the draft, Israel had shown its opposition to the Palestinian right to self-determination.  However, peace settlement negotiations required a recognition of that right as a starting off point, as the right to self-determination should not be seen as an outcome alone.  If Israel was for peace, it would end its colonization and expansionist agenda in the Occupied Palestinian Territory.  The overwhelming majority of votes in favour of the resolution proved that Israel’s attempts to distort the facts regarding what was happening on the ground had failed.  Israel was an occupying Power that continued to carry out policies to deliberately destroy the social fabric of society.


Turning to the vote cast by the United States against the draft, she said the vote sent an inconsistent message since, in other forums, it had expressed support for a Palestinian State.  She asked the United States to reconsider its vote and the inconsistencies in its approach to the situation.  Peace in the Middle East required a solution that guaranteed the rights of both peoples, and the right to self-determination was the first step in that direction.  For decades, the Palestinian people had struggled to see that right realized and they would continue to do so, and would not succumb, until their right to self-determination was a reality.


The Committee then moved to take action on the draft resolution on equitable geographical distribution in the membership of the human rights treaty bodies (document A/C.3/63/L.45), which contained no programme budget implications.


The representative of Cuba, the main sponsor, expressed hope that the draft would be adopted without a vote.  However, if the draft went to a vote, he asked all States to show support by voting in its favour.


The representative of the Russian Federation said it was entirely justified to raise the issues dealt with in the draft.  All the main international human rights treaties addressed the need for equitable representation in the treaty bodies, but, in practice, such needs were not always respected.  The principle of objectivity was at the core of the work of treaty bodies, yet that objectivity was also not always respected.  Failure to respect equitable representation and objectivity affected the quality of the treaty bodies’ work, an “alarming situation”, but, with appropriate effort, one that “was far from being hopeless.”


The CHAIR informed the Committee that a recorded vote had been requested.  Cuba’s delegate asked to be informed who requested the vote.  The CHAIR informed the Committee that the United States had requested the vote.


In a general statement, the representative of Cuba said he believed all delegations were committed to the principle of equitable geographical distribution in the membership of the treaty bodies and he expressed hope that delegations would demonstrate their commitment to that principle and to the work of the bodies, by voting in favour of the draft.


The representative of the United States said the draft purported to establish new requirements pertaining to the treaty bodies.  The process of selecting members to the treaty bodies had already been set forth in the treaties themselves and the current composition of the treaty bodies did represent that diversity.  States parties should determine the method of selection of the membership of the treaty bodies, and it was not appropriate for the General Assembly to substitute its judgement for theirs.  Objectivity was an important part of the treaty bodies’ work and the resolution under consideration represented a threat to that perceived objectivity.  Accordingly, the United States would be required to vote against the draft.


The representative of France, speaking on behalf of the European Union and associated countries, said that, while the Union recognized the importance of the equitable representation, it opposed the draft resolution because the treaties themselves contained provisions that governed the membership of the treaty bodies.  It was not incumbent on the General Assembly to modify those provisions or to encourage others to do so.  In addition, the European Union firmly opposed the concept of quotas and it did not want to see such quotas included in a resolution.  It also rejected operative paragraph 5 of the draft.  The European Union regretted the fact that Cuba had not contained more constructive proposals on how to achieve an equitable representation in the draft, instead of moving immediately to a quota system.


The Committee then approved the draft by a recorded vote of 122 in favour, to 53 against, with 4 abstentions (Brazil, Cape Verde, Timor-Leste, Ukraine) (Annex VIII).


The Committee then took up the draft resolution on globalization and its impact on the full enjoyment of human rights (document A/C.3/63/L.28), as its main sponsor, the representative of Egypt, pointed to the growing number of co-sponsors as a testament to the increased importance that States attached to the issue.  There was a need to address the impact of globalization on humanity, which included the impact of changes in the mode of communication, production and technology and the impact of food, fuel and financial challenges.  He noted that some might wish to call those challenges “crises”, but doing so was a call to panic.  As such, the resolution referred to them as challenges.  The draft would call on States to search for ways to optimize the enjoyment of human rights throughout the world and for the world to respond adequately to both opportunities and challenges presented by globalization.  There was a chance to narrow persistent “faultlines” and even to cross them, should States wish.   He hoped that the draft would help enhance the world’s understanding of globalization and in averting all negatives aspects of globalization.


The CHAIR announced that a recorded vote had been requested and, in response to Egypt, said that it had been requested by France on behalf of the European Union.


The representative of France, speaking on behalf of the European Union and associated States, said the regional bloc attached priority to finding tangible solutions to deal with globalization effectively.  While he recognized that globalization could have an impact on the enjoyment of human rights, the draft had drawn a link between globalization and a “negation of human rights”, which he did not think was valid.  He said that globalization could offer solutions to the “evils” of poverty.  It was true that the benefits of globalization were not fairly shared, but there also were opportunities that favoured growth and prosperity, which could help bring a positive impact to the protection and promotion of human rights.  Moreover, he was not convinced that globalization had an impact on all human rights; the link between cause and effect should be studied on a case-by-case basis.  It was for that reason that the European Union voted against a similar resolution last year, and at that time had asked for an open debate.  However, the co-sponsors had shown no desire to hold open consultations on the draft.


The draft resolution was then approved by a vote of 125 in favour to 53 against, with 3 abstentions ( Brazil, Chile, Singapore) (see Annex IX).


The representative of Egypt said he had hoped that the text would have passed by consensus.  He noted that two rounds of informal consultations had been held on the draft, and that those delegations that had voted against the draft had not shown up.


The Committee then took up, and approved without a vote, a draft resolution on the Subregional Centre for Human Rights and Democracy in Central Africa (document A/C.3/63/L.29), which the Secretary of the Committee said would not entail additional appropriations under the programme budget for the 2008-2009 biennium.  The representative of Gabon, the draft’s main sponsor, said he wished to thank all those that had contributed to the draft.


In a general statement after action, the representative of Cuba expressed his delegation’s full support for the draft.  It was an historical and worthwhile initiative.  Cuba would have liked for the draft to have more co-sponsors, and he suggested that changes to the content or the inclusion of the last preambular paragraph might have brought further support.  That said, he reiterated his delegation’s support for the draft.


Speaking in exercise of the right of reply, the representative of the United Kingdom said its position on the Falkland Islands was well known and had been previously set out in detail.  The United Kingdom had no doubt regarding its sovereignty over the islands.  There could be no negotiations on the sovereignty of those islands unless or until the residents of the islands so wished and, in that regard, residents had regularly made it clear that they wished for no change.


(annexes follow)


ANNEX I


Vote on Oral Amendments to Death Penalty Moratorium


The oral amendment to operative paragraph 2 of the draft resolution on the death penalty moratorium (document A/C.3/63/L.19/Rev.1), which would have the General Assembly consider the issue at its sixty-sixth session, was rejected by a recorded vote of 88 against to 55 in favour, with 24 abstentions, as follows:


Against:  Albania, Algeria, Andorra, Angola, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Burundi, Canada, Cape Verde, Chile, Colombia, Congo, Costa Rica, Côte d’Ivoire, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Estonia, Finland, France, Gabon, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Haiti, Honduras, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Kiribati, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Mali, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Mexico, Micronesia (Federated States of), Monaco, Montenegro, Mozambique, Namibia, Nauru, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Palau, Panama, Paraguay, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Rwanda, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Timor-Leste, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom, Uruguay, Venezuela.


In favour:  Afghanistan, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belize, Botswana, Brunei Darussalam, China, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Dominica, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Fiji, Grenada, Guinea, Guyana, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kuwait, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Libya, Malaysia, Maldives, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nigeria, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Qatar, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Solomon Islands, Sudan, Swaziland, Syria, Thailand, Togo, Trinidad and Tobago, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, United States, Viet Nam, Yemen, Zimbabwe.


Abstain:  Benin, Bhutan, Cambodia, Djibouti, Equatorial Guinea, Ghana, Guatemala, Kenya, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Malawi, Mauritania, Morocco, Niger, Peru, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Sri Lanka, Suriname, United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia.


Absent:  Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Cuba, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Madagascar, Nicaragua, Oman, Seychelles, Somalia, Tajikistan, Tonga, Tunisia, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, Uzbekistan, Vanuatu.


ANNEX II


Vote on Oral Amendments to Death Penalty Moratorium


The oral amendment to operative paragraph 3 of the draft resolution on the death penalty moratorium (document A/C.3/63/L.19/Rev.1), which would have the General Assembly consider the issue at the sixty-sixth session, was rejected by a recorded vote of 90 against to 53 in favour, with 23 abstentions, as follows:


Against:  Albania, Algeria, Andorra, Angola, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Burundi, Canada, Cape Verde, Chad, Chile, Colombia, Congo, Costa Rica, Côte d’Ivoire, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Estonia, Finland, France, Gabon, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Haiti, Honduras, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Kiribati, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Mali, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Mexico, Micronesia (Federated States of), Monaco, Montenegro, Mozambique, Namibia, Nauru, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Palau, Panama, Paraguay, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Rwanda, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Timor-Leste, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom, Uruguay, Venezuela.


In favour:  Afghanistan, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belize, Botswana, Brunei Darussalam, China, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Dominica, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Fiji, Grenada, Guinea, Guyana, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kuwait, Libya, Malaysia, Maldives, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nigeria, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Qatar, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Solomon Islands, Sudan, Swaziland, Syria, Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, United States, Viet Nam, Yemen, Zimbabwe.


Abstain:  Benin, Bhutan, Cambodia, Djibouti, Equatorial Guinea, Ghana, Guatemala, Kenya, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Malawi, Mauritania, Morocco, Niger, Peru, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, Senegal, Sri Lanka, Suriname, United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia.


Absent:  Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Comoros, Cuba, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Madagascar, Nicaragua, Oman, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Tajikistan, Togo, Tonga, Tunisia, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, Uzbekistan, Vanuatu.


ANNEX III


Vote on Proposal for Separate Vote on Preambular Paragraph 1


The motion to have a separate vote on preambular paragraph 1 of the draft resolution on a moratorium on the death penalty (document A/C.3/63/L.19/Rev.1) was rejected by a recorded vote of 88 against to 53 in favour, with 24 abstentions, as follows:


Against:  Albania, Andorra, Angola, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Burundi, Canada, Cape Verde, Chad, Chile, Colombia, Congo, Costa Rica, Côte d’Ivoire, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Estonia, Finland, France, Gabon, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Haiti, Honduras, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Kiribati, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Mali, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Mexico, Micronesia (Federated States of), Monaco, Montenegro, Mozambique, Namibia, Nauru, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Palau, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Rwanda, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Timor-Leste, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom, Venezuela.


In favour:  Afghanistan, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belize, Botswana, Brunei Darussalam, China, Comoros, Cuba, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Dominica, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Grenada, Guinea, Guyana, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kuwait, Libya, Malaysia, Maldives, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nigeria, Pakistan, Qatar, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Solomon Islands, Sudan, Swaziland, Syria, Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, United States, Viet Nam, Yemen, Zimbabwe.


Abstain:  Benin, Bhutan, Cambodia, Djibouti, Equatorial Guinea, Fiji, Ghana, Guatemala, Kenya, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Malawi, Mauritania, Morocco, Niger, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Sri Lanka, Suriname, United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia.


Absent:  Algeria, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Madagascar, Nicaragua, Oman, Papua New Guinea, Seychelles, Somalia, Tajikistan, Togo, Tonga, Tunisia, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Vanuatu.


ANNEX IV


Vote on Motion for Vote on Operative Paragraph 1


The motion to have a separate vote on operative paragraph 1 of the draft resolution on a moratorium on the death penalty (document A/C.3/63/L.19/Rev.1) was rejected by a recorded vote of 88 against to 55 in favour, with 24 abstentions, as follows:


Against:  Albania, Andorra, Angola, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Burundi, Canada, Cape Verde, Chile, Colombia, Congo, Costa Rica, Côte d’Ivoire, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Estonia, Finland, France, Gabon, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Haiti, Honduras, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Kiribati, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Mali, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Mexico, Micronesia (Federated States of), Monaco, Montenegro, Mozambique, Namibia, Nauru, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Palau, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Rwanda, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Serbia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Timor-Leste, Turkey, Tuvalu, Ukraine, United Kingdom, Uruguay, Venezuela.


In favour:  Afghanistan, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belize, Botswana, Brunei Darussalam, Chad, China, Comoros, Cuba, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Dominica, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Grenada, Guinea, Guyana, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kuwait, Libya, Malaysia, Maldives, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nigeria, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Qatar, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Solomon Islands, Sudan, Swaziland, Syria, Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, United States, Viet Nam, Yemen, Zimbabwe.


Abstain:  Benin, Bhutan, Djibouti, Equatorial Guinea, Fiji, Ghana, Guatemala, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Malawi, Mauritania, Morocco, Niger, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Sri Lanka, Suriname, United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia.


Absent:  Algeria, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gambia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Madagascar, Nicaragua, Oman, Seychelles, Slovakia, Somalia, Tajikistan, Togo, Tonga, Tunisia, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Vanuatu.


ANNEX V


Vote on Moratorium on Death Penalty


The draft resolution on a moratorium on the death penalty (document A/C.3/63/L.19/Rev.1) was approved by a recorded vote of 105 in favour to 48 against, with 31 abstentions, as follows:


In favour:  Albania, Algeria, Andorra, Angola, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Benin, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Canada, Cape Verde, Chile, Colombia, Congo, Costa Rica, Côte d’Ivoire, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Estonia, Finland, France, Gabon, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Guatemala, Guinea-Bissau, Haiti, Honduras, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Kazakhstan, Kiribati, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Mali, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Mexico, Micronesia (Federated States of), Monaco, Montenegro, Mozambique, Namibia, Nauru, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Norway, Palau, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Russian Federation, Rwanda, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Switzerland, Tajikistan, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Timor-Leste, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, Ukraine, United Kingdom, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Venezuela.


Against:  Afghanistan, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belize, Botswana, Brunei Darussalam, Chad, China, Comoros, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Dominica, Egypt, Ethiopia, Grenada, Guyana, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Jamaica, Japan, Kuwait, Libya, Malaysia, Maldives, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nigeria, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Qatar, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Solomon Islands, Sudan, Swaziland, Syria, Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, Uganda, United States, Yemen, Zimbabwe.


Abstain:  Bahrain, Belarus, Bhutan, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Cuba, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Fiji, Ghana, Guinea, Jordan, Kenya, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Malawi, Mauritania, Morocco, Niger, Oman, Republic of Korea, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Suriname, Togo, United Arab Emirates, United Republic of Tanzania, Viet Nam, Zambia.


Absent:  Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Gambia, Seychelles, Somalia, Tonga, Tunisia, Vanuatu.


ANNEX VI


Vote on Family Reunification


The draft resolution on respect for the right to universal freedom of travel and the vital importance of family reunification (document A/C.3/63/L.43) was approved by a recorded vote of 118 in favour to 3 against, with 60 abstentions, as follows:


In favour:  Afghanistan, Algeria, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belize, Benin, Bhutan, Bolivia, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Chile, China, Colombia, Comoros, Congo, Costa Rica, Cuba, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Fiji, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Grenada, Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Jamaica, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Maldives, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Mongolia, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nauru, Nepal, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Qatar, Russian Federation, Rwanda, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Solomon Islands, Somalia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Suriname, Swaziland, Syria, Tajikistan, Timor-Leste, Togo, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, Viet Nam, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe.


Against:  Israel, Palau, United States.


Abstain:  Albania, Andorra, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Brunei Darussalam, Bulgaria, Canada, Côte d’Ivoire, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malawi, Malaysia, Malta, Micronesia (Federated States of), Monaco, Montenegro, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Republic of Korea, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Samoa, San Marino, Serbia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Turkey, Tuvalu, Ukraine, United Kingdom.


Absent:  Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kiribati, Madagascar, Marshall Islands, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Seychelles, Tonga, Turkmenistan, United Republic of Tanzania, Vanuatu.


ANNEX VII


Vote on Palestinian Self-Determination


The draft resolution on the right of the Palestinian people to Self-determination (document A/C.3/63/L.52*) was approved by a recorded vote of 175 in favour to 5 against, with 5 abstentions, as follows:


In favour:  Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Andorra, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belgium, Belize, Benin, Bhutan, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Chile, China, Colombia, Comoros, Congo, Costa Rica, Côte d’Ivoire, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Denmark, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Eritrea, Estonia, Ethiopia, Finland, France, Gabon, Gambia, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Grenada, Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Latvia, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Malta, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Monaco, Mongolia, Montenegro, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Russian Federation, Rwanda, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, Somalia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Suriname, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Tajikistan, Thailand, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Timor-Leste, Togo, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United Republic of Tanzania, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, Viet Nam, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe.


Against:  Israel, Marshall Islands, Micronesia (Federated States of), Palau, United States.


Abstain:  Australia, Cameroon, Canada, Equatorial Guinea, Fiji.


Absent:  Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kiribati, Nauru, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Seychelles, Tonga, Vanuatu.


ANNEX VIII


Vote on Equitable Membership on Human Rights Treaty Bodies


The draft resolution on equitable geographical distribution on human rights treaty bodies (document A/C.3/63/L.45) was approved by a recorded vote of 122 in favour to 53 against, with 4 abstentions, as follows:


In favour:  Afghanistan, Algeria, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belize, Benin, Bhutan, Bolivia, Botswana, Brunei Darussalam, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, China, Colombia, Comoros, Congo, Costa Rica, Côte d’Ivoire, Cuba, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Fiji, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Grenada, Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Jamaica, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Mongolia, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nepal, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Oman, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Qatar, Russian Federation, Rwanda, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Solomon Islands, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Suriname, Swaziland, Syria, Tajikistan, Thailand, Togo, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, United Republic of Tanzania, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, Viet Nam, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe.


Against:  Albania, Andorra, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, Montenegro, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Panama, Poland, Portugal, Republic of Korea, Republic of Moldova, Romania, San Marino, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Turkey, United Kingdom, United States.


Abstain:  Brazil, Cape Verde, Timor-Leste, Ukraine.


Absent:  Azerbaijan, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Micronesia (Federated States of), Nauru, Palau, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Sao Tome and Principe, Seychelles, Somalia, Tonga, Vanuatu.


ANNEX IX


Vote on Globalization


The draft resolution on globalization and its impact on the full employment of human rights (document A/C.3/63/L.28) was approved by a recorded vote of 125 in favour to 53 against, with 3 abstentions, as follows:


In favour:  Afghanistan, Algeria, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belize, Benin, Bhutan, Bolivia, Botswana, Brunei Darussalam, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, China, Colombia, Comoros, Congo, Costa Rica, Côte d’Ivoire, Cuba, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Fiji, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Grenada, Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Jamaica, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Mongolia, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nepal, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Qatar, Russian Federation, Rwanda, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Solomon Islands, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Suriname, Swaziland, Syria, Tajikistan, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Togo, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Tuvalu, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, United Republic of Tanzania, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, Viet Nam, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe.


Against:  Albania, Andorra, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Micronesia (Federated States of), Monaco, Montenegro, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Palau, Poland, Portugal, Republic of Korea, Republic of Moldova, Romania, San Marino, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United States.


Abstain:  Brazil, Chile, Singapore.


Absent:  Chad, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Seychelles, Somalia, Tonga, Turkmenistan, Vanuatu.


* *** *



For information media • not an official record