3 November 2009
General Assembly
GA/10881

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

Sixty-fourth General Assembly

Plenary

35th Meeting (AM)


General Assembly Fills Vacancies on Subsidiary Bodies

 


The General Assembly, through elections and appointments, today filled several vacancies to subsidiary organs of the Assembly and other United Nations administrative and budgetary bodies, including the Committee on Conferences and the Joint Inspection Unit (JIU).


The Assembly first elected six members -- Comoros, Haiti, Israel, Namibia, Russian Federation and Venezuela -- to the Committee for Programme and Coordination, a subsidiary body of the Economic and Social Council,for three-year terms of office beginning on 1 January 2010.


A note by the Secretary-General before the Assembly (A/64/307) contained the nominations of the Council to fill the vacancies in the Committee that will occur after the expirations of the terms of office, on 31 December, of the Comoros, France, Haiti, Israel, Russian Federation, Venezuela and Zimbabwe -- all of which were eligible for immediate re-election.


The six newly elected States were nominated by the Council according to the following pattern:  two members from African States; one member from Eastern European States; two members from Latin American and Caribbean States; and two members from Western European and other States.


There remain four vacancies in the Western European and other States Group whose terms of office begin on the date of election.  Three terms will expire on 31 December 2011, and one term on 31 December 2012.  The Assembly will be in a position to act on those vacancies upon the nomination by the Economic and Social Council of four Member States from that region.


After 1 January 2010, the following States will still be Committee members: Argentina, Armenia, Bangladesh, Belarus, Brazil, Central African Republic, China, Cuba, Guinea, India, Iran, Italy, Jamaica, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Libya, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Republic of Korea, South Africa, Spain, Ukraine and Uruguay.


After action, Iran’s delegate clarified that his vote for Israel to the Committee was negative.


Next, the Assembly elected 30 members of the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) -- established by the Assembly in 1966 to remove obstacles to international trade -- to six-year terms, replacing those members whose terms of office will expire on 20 June 2010.


Elected to the Commission were: Algeria, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belarus, Brazil, Colombia, Czech Republic, Fiji, Gabon, India, Iran, Israel, Italy, Jordan, Kenya, Mauritius, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, Poland, Spain, Thailand, Turkey, Uganda, Ukraine, United States and Venezuela.


They replace the outgoing members, namely:   Algeria, Australia, Austria, Belarus, Colombia, Czech Republic, Ecuador, Fiji, Gabon, Guatemala, India, Iran, Israel, Italy, Kenya, Lebanon, Madagascar, Mongolia, Nigeria, Pakistan, Paraguay, Poland, Serbia, Spain, Switzerland, Thailand, Uganda, United States, Venezuela and Zimbabwe -- all of which were eligible for immediate re-election.


As of 21 June 2010, the following States will continue to be represented on the Commission: Armenia, Bahrain, Benin, Bolivia, Bulgaria, Cameroon, Canada, Chile, China, Egypt, El Salvador, France, Germany, Greece, Honduras, Japan, Latvia, Malaysia, Malta, Mexico, Morocco, Namibia, Norway, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, Senegal, Singapore, South Africa, Sri Lanka and the United Kingdom -– none of which were eligible for election.


Following that action, the Assembly then elected 29 members to the Governing Council of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), for a four-year term of office, beginning on 1 January 2010.


The Governing Council reports to the General Assembly through the Economic and Social Council.  Some 58 members of the Governing Council are elected by the General Assembly, for four-year terms, taking into account the principle of equitable regional representation.


Elected today were:  Australia, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Central African Republic, China, Czech Republic, France, Gabon, Germany, Indonesia, Japan, Kenya, Lesotho, Malaysia, Mauritania, Mozambique, Pakistan, Republic of Korea, Romania, Russian Federation, Switzerland, Trinidad and Tobago, United Republic of Tanzania, United States, Uruguay and Zambia.


They replace outgoing members, namely:  Algeria, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium Botswana, Burundi, Canada, Chile, China, Czech Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, France, Germany, Haiti, Indonesia, Japan, Kenya, Pakistan, Republic of Korea, Romania, Russian Federation, South Africa, Thailand, Uganda, United States and Uruguay -– all of which were eligible for immediate re-election.


After 1 January 2010, the following States will still be members of the Governing Council:   Bahamas, Bangladesh, Benin, Colombia, Congo, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cuba, Fiji, Finland, Guinea, Hungary, India, Iran, Israel, Italy, Kazakhstan, Mali, Mauritius, Mexico, Monaco, Netherlands, Niger, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Somalia, Spain, Tunisia and Tuvalu.


Also, in a by election, the Assembly elected Hungary, endorsed by the Eastern European States, to the Governing Council, for a two-year term beginning on 1 January 2010 and expiring on 31 December 2011.


In doing so, the Assembly acted on a request contained in a 12 August 2009 letter from the Representative of Belarus to the United Nations (A/64/297), announcing that his country would relinquish its seat on the Governing Council for the remainder of its term, in favour of Hungary.


In other action, the President of the General Assembly, after consultations with the Chairmen of the five regional groups, appointed Côte d’Ivoire, Germany and Syria to the Committee on Conferences, a 21-member subsidiary organ of the Assembly, for a three-year term, beginning on 1 January 2010.


In appointing those States, the Assembly President acted on his responsibility, outlined in a note by the Secretary-General before the General Assembly (A/64/107), to fill seven vacancies, during the sixty-fourth session, created by the departure of Belarus, Germany, Grenada, Honduras, Nigeria, Senegal and Syria, whose terms of office expire on 31 December 2009. Regarding the remaining vacant seats from among the African States, Eastern European States and Latin American and Caribbean States, the Assembly President would continue to consult with those regional groups.


In final action, the Assembly, in an advisory vote, selected France and Turkey, among the Western European and other States, to join Hungary (Eastern European States) and Senegal (African States) in proposing one candidate each to fill vacancies in the Joint Inspection Unit (JIU), the independent external oversight body of the United Nations which conducts evaluations, inspections and investigations.


According to a note by the Secretary-General (A/64/106), the Assembly is required, during its sixty-fourth session, to appoint four members to fill four vacancies in the Unit that will arise from the expiration, on 31 December 2010, of the terms of office of Gérard Biraud ( France), Papa Louis Fall ( Senegal), István Posta ( Hungary) and Cihan Terzi ( Turkey).


As outlined in the statute of the Unit, the General Assembly President shall consult with Member States to draw up a list of four countries, which will then be requested to propose candidates for appointment to the Unit.  When drawing up that list, the Assembly President would invite Members States to submit names of the countries and their respective candidates simultaneously, on the understanding that the candidates would be those that the respective Member States intended to propose for appointment by the Assembly.


Voting Results for Joint Inspection Unit Elections


Western European and other States (2 seats)


Number of ballot papers:

186

Number of invalid ballots:

0

Number of valid ballots:

186

Abstentions:

0

Number of Members present and voting:

186

Required majority:

94

Number of votes obtained by country:


Turkey

146

France

117

Spain

101


The General Assembly will reconvene at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, 4 November, to take up the Report of the Human Rights Council on its twelfth special session (document A/64/53/Add.1).


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For information media • not an official record