|Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York|
Sixty-fifth General Assembly
63rd & 64th Meetings (AM & PM)
General Assembly Adopts 10 Resolutions Aimed at Shoring up Shared Response
of United Nations, Regional Organizations to Complex Global Challenges
Calls for Enhanced Cooperation Span Regions, Treaty Bodies; Assembly Reviews
Unilateral Coercive Economic Measures, Hears Briefing on Chemical Weapons Ban
Capping a day of debate aimed at forging a flexible and effective shared response to the present complex political, economic and social challenges, the General Assembly today adopted a raft of consensus texts urging more cooperation — among States and between the United Nations and various regions and treaty bodies — on everything from environmental management and transit construction to the broader spheres of trade, economic integration, security and peacebuilding.
Many of the 10 resolutions recalled the founding purposes of the United Nations to cooperate in solving global economic, social, cultural and humanitarian problems, and they invoked past resolutions urging “scrupulous” respect for zones of peace and adherence to other declarations outlining the pressing need to make global partnership the cornerstone for global and regional development policy.
Among them was one underscoring the importance of strengthened dialogue between the United Nations and the six-member Eurasian Economic Community (EURASEC), especially in meeting the challenges of the global economic and financial crisis. By its terms, the Assembly noted the creation within the Community of the Anti-Crisis Fund as a useful contribution to the multilateral response to the current downturn.
That resolution was one of two introduced by Kazakhstan’s representative, who, in discussing the second text on cooperation between the United Nations and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), on behalf of members of that grouping, said it aimed at strengthening peace, security and stability in the region through countering terrorism, extremism, trafficking and other forms of transnational crime. Among other actions, the resolution urged United Nations agencies to explore new avenues of relevant cooperation with SCO.
Calling for more dialogue with parliamentarians, Namibia’s representative, who introduced a resolution outlining ways to do that, said its operative paragraphs were based largely on language agreed to in 2008, establishing that the Assembly would truly examine how the United Nations engaged with national parliaments, rather than simply look at relations between the two organizations. The report of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) on how parliaments organized their work with the Assembly, referenced in the resolution, offered a starting point for that discussion, he said.
In discussion that followed, Egypt’s delegate noted that his country had introduced to the Assembly in 1996 the agenda item on cooperation with IPU, which had made valuable contributions to such important fields as disarmament and nuclear non-proliferation, and addressed specific problems related to globalization, trade liberalization and climate change. Moving forward, IPU could play a constructive role in United Nations reform, including in the revitalization of the Assembly and expansion of the Security Council. Its role was of equal importance in the promotion of peace, and in the dialogue among cultures, civilizations and religions.
In the area of non-proliferation, the Assembly adopted a resolution on “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Preparatory Commission of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization” (CTBTO), whose Executive Secretary, Tibor Toth, updated delegates on that body’s work. The Preparatory Commission hadworked closely with the United Nations, he said, and enhanced cooperation with a view to limiting the spread of nuclear weapons. With some 182 signatures, the CTBTO promised to be a uniting force in the multilateral system. For it to enter into force, the signature and ratification of the remaining nine “Annex II” States was required.
The Chemical Weapons Convention also required more cooperation, said John Freeman, Deputy Director General of The Hague-based Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), especially in States parties’ compliance with Security Council resolution 1540 (2004), an area in which OPCW worked. Briefing the Assembly on the organization’s work, he said its members looked forward to making a substantive contribution to the creation of a nuclear-weapon-free zone in the Middle East.
Concerning unilateral coercive economic measures, also on the Assembly’s agenda today, Cuba’s speaker reminded delegates that such “absurd and irrational” practices had been rejected by the Assembly in numerous resolutions. Their promulgation only highlighted the true policies of those States claiming to be free trade advocates, but that really obstructed free trade. Cuba would continue to work with the majority of the community of nations to eliminate those measures once and for all.
Other resolutions adopted by the Assembly were on: “Zone of Peace and Cooperation of the South Atlantic”; “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO)”; “Cooperation between the United Nations and the League of Arab States”; “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Organization (BSEC)”; “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO)”; and “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Council of Europe”.
Also today, the Assembly postponed consideration of its agenda item on multilingualism to a date to be announced.
Introducing the draft resolution on “Zone of Peace and Cooperation of the South Atlantic” was Angola’s representative, on behalf of the Member States of that zone.
The draft resolution on “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO)” was introduced by the representative of Belarus, on behalf of that organization.
Introducing the draft resolution on “Cooperation between the United Nations and the League of Arab States”, on behalf of the Arab Group, was the representative of the United Arab Emirates.
Johann Paschalis of South Africa introduced the draft resolution on “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Preparatory Commission of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization”, while Greece’s representative introduced the draft resolution on “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Organization (BSEC)”.
Introducing the draft resolution on Cooperation between the United Nations and the Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) was the representative of Iran.
The representative of Turkey, whose country held the current chair of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, introduced the draft resolution on “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Council of Europe”.
Also speaking today was Canada’s representative.
Speaking as observers were the General Secretary of the Eurasian Economic Community (EurAsEC), the Chairman of the Executive Board of the Eurasian Development Bank, a representative of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Mediterranean, General Secretary of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU), Secretary General of the Organization of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation (BSEC), the Permanent Observer of the Asian-African Legal Consultative Organization (AALCO), and the Permanent Observer of the League of Arab States.
The United Kingdom’s representative spoke in explanation of position after action.
Speaking in exercise of the right of reply was Argentina’s delegate.
The General Assembly will reconvene at 10 a.m. Tuesday, 14 December to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of the adoption of the Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples.
The General Assembly met today to consider the elimination of unilateral extraterritorial coercive economic measures as a means of political and economic compulsion. It was also expected to take action on several draft texts related to cooperation between the United nations and regional and other organizations.
For its discussion, the Assembly had before it a draft resolution on Zone of peace and cooperation of the South Atlantic (document A/65/L.22), by which it would recall resolution 41/11 (1986), in which the Atlantic Ocean, in the region between Africa and South America, was declared a zone of peace and cooperation of the South Atlantic, and call on States to cooperate in promoting objectives outlined in that resolution.
It would request relevant United Nations bodies and invite relevant partners, including international financial institutions, to assist members of that zone in efforts to implement the Luanda Plan of Action. Welcoming Uruguay’s offer to host the seventh ministerial meeting of States members of the zone, it would request the Secretary-General to keep the implementation of resolution 41/11 and subsequent resolutions on the zone under review and to submit a report to the Assembly’s sixty-sixth session.
It also had before it a draft text on Cooperation between the United Nations and the Collective Security Treaty Organization (document A/65/L.6), noting that organization’s cooperation in such areas as strengthening regional security and stability, peacemaking, counter-terrorism and combating illegal trafficking in narcotics and arms. Noting the importance of strengthened dialogue between the United Nations and the organization, it would invite the Secretaries-General of those bodies to continue regular consultations. It also would invite specialized United Nations departments, including the Department of Political Affairs, to develop direct contacts with the organization.
Before the Assembly was also a draft text on Cooperation between the United Nations, national parliaments and the Inter-Parliamentary Union (document A/65/L.11), encouraging the Union to strengthen its contribution to the Assembly and inviting the Peacebuilding Commission to continue its work with the union in engaging national parliaments in countries under its consideration. It also would invite UN Women to work closely with the Union and decide to more systematically engage with the Union in integrating a parliamentary contribution into major United Nations deliberative processes. Moreover, it would decide to include in the provisional agenda of its sixty-sixth session an item on “Interaction between the United Nations, national parliaments and the Inter-Parliamentary Union”.
By a draft text on Cooperation between the United Nations and the Community of Portuguese-speaking Countries (document A/65/L.23/Rev.1), the Assembly would recognize the importance of the Community’s May 2009 decision to create centres of excellence for training trainers in peacekeeping operations, with a view to continuing and possibly enhancing the Community’s contribution in that area. It would note with appreciation the approval of the Community’s 2010 work plan for the oceans and acknowledge the relevance of the inaugural and second meetings of the Community’s Parliamentary Assembly, in April 2009 and March 2010, respectively.
A draft resolution on Cooperation between the United Nations and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (document A/65/L.29) would have the Assembly take note of the organization’s activities aimed at strengthening regional peace, security and stability, countering terrorism and other transnational criminal activities and promoting cooperation in trade, energy, transportation and banking, among other areas. It would welcome the joint declaration on cooperation between the Secretariats of the United Nations and the organization, proposing that the Secretaries-General continue to hold regular consultations. It also would propose that United Nations specialized agencies, programmes and funds cooperate with the organization.
The draft resolution on Cooperation between the United Nations and the Eurasian Economic Community (document A/65/L.32) would have the Assembly recognize that water and energy resources management, and the development, dissemination and transfer of technologies were particularly important for the sustainable development of Community Members. It would note the creation, within the Community, of the Anti-Crisis Fund as a useful contribution to the multilateral response to the current crisis, and progress achieved in regional economic integration with the creation of the customs union by Belarus, Kazakhstan and the Russian Federation. It would request the Secretary-General to submit a report to the Assembly’s sixty-seventh session on implementation of the present text.
Also before the Assembly was a draft resolution on cooperation between the United Nations and the League of Arab States (A/65/L.33), by which the Assembly would request the Secretary-General of the United Nations and the General Secretariat of the League to intensify their cooperation for the realization of the purposes and principles embodied in the United Nations Charter. It would call upon the specialized agencies and other organizations and programmes of the United Nations to continue to cooperate with the Secretary-General and among themselves, as well as with the League and its specialized organizations; to strengthen the capacity of the League; and to inform the Secretary-General of progress made in their cooperation with the League, among other actions.
The Assembly was set to take action on a draft resolution on cooperation between the United Nations and the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) (A/65/L.34), by which it would take note of the Secretary-General’ report and that of the Executive Secretary of the Preparatory Commission for the CTBTO.
A draft resolution on cooperation between the United Nations and the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Organization (A/65/L.35) would have the Assembly acknowledge the commitment of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Organization (BSEC) to attaining the Millennium Development Goals at national, regional and global levels, and welcome its activities to strengthen regional cooperation in the fields of energy, transport, good governance, and science and technology, among others. It would also appeal for greater cooperation between the organization and international financial institutions in co-financing feasibility and pre-feasibility studies of the projects in the wider Black Sea area. The Secretary-General and other United Nations programmes would be invited to increase dialogue with the organization.
By a draft resolution on cooperation between the United Nations and the Economic Cooperation Organization (A/65/L.40), the Assembly would invite the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), World Trade Organization (WTO) and International Trade Centre (ITC) to develop strategies for organization members in their trade liberalization processes that could lead to regional and global integration of their economies. It would welcome the establishment of the Economic Cooperation Organization Coordination Group and request the Commission’s assistance for convening the meetings of that Group. Further, it would invite United Nations specialized agencies to expand cooperation in the area of environment with organization and extend financial and technical assistance for feasibility studies of projects, training courses, workshops and experts and high-level group meetings in that regard.
Also before the Assembly was a draft resolution on cooperation between the United Nations and the Council of Europe, l.41 by which the Assembly would reiterate its call for reinforcing cooperation in the protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms, inter alia, the promotion of democracy and rule of law; prevention of torture; fight against trafficking in human beings; fight against racism, discrimination, xenophobia and intolerance; and promotion of gender equality, among other areas. It would encourage further cooperation between the Council and the United Nations, including the Human Rights Council (HRC) and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), on the situation of human rights defenders.
The Assembly was also expected to take action on a draft resolution contained in the report of its Credentials Committee entitled Credentials of representatives to the sixty-fifth session of the General Assembly (A/65/583), which would have it approve that report.
Another draft resolution was before the Assembly, on cooperation between the United Nations and the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) (document A/65/L.43), which would, among other things, have the Assembly Affirm that the United Nations and the OIC shared a common goal of promoting and facilitating the Middle East peace process so that it could reach its objective of establishing a just and comprehensive peace in that region.
The text would also request the secretariats of the two organizations to strengthen cooperation in addressing the social and economic issues that affect the efforts of Member States to eradicate poverty and achieve sustainable development and the internationally agreed development goals, including the Millennium Development Goals.
Delegations were also set to consider a consolidated report on cooperation between the United Nations and regional and other organizations (document A/65/382-S/2010/490), including: the African Union; Asian-African Legal Consultative Organization; the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN); Black Sea Economic Cooperation Organization (BSEC); Caribbean Community (CARICOM); Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO); Community of Portuguese-speaking Countries (CLPC); Council of Europe; Economic Community of Central African States; Economic Cooperation Organization; and the Eurasian Economic Community.
The consolidated report also contained information on cooperation between the United nations and the International Organization of la Francophonie; Latin American Economic System; League of Arab States; Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE); Organization of American States (OAS); Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC); Pacific Islands Forum; Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO); Southern African Development Community (SADC); Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU); Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OOPCW); and the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO).
Finally, the Assembly had before it the Secretary-General’s report on Multilingualism (document A/65/488), addressing the role of multilingualism in the Secretariat, with reference to human resources; conference management; peacekeeping, security, political, legal and inspection offices and departments; humanitarian, economic, and social offices and departments; internal communication; and public information and outreach.
In that report, the Secretary-General concludes that the United Nations had sought creative ways to promote multilingualism in all areas of its work. Informing and reaching different audiences in the six official languages, as well as in local languages, through traditional and new media, was essential to engaging the world in the Organization’s work. Promoting multilingualism is closely linked to respecting cultural diversity and promoting intercultural dialogue. The Secretariat, he says, is making every effort to make content available in all six official languages in a timely manner while ensuring the quality of interpretation and translation. It also uses formal and informal ways to reach out to the public in the official languages through its outreach programmes and initiatives. The further promotion of multilingualism in the Secretariat will require increased efforts by all.
NADIESKA NAVARRO BARRO ( Cuba) said the implementation by any State of unilateral, economic, political or other measures to coerce others into subordinating the exercise of their sovereign rights flagrantly violated international law, the United Nations Charter and the basic principles of the multilateral trading system. “This has been denounced and rejected by the General Assembly in numerous resolutions,” she said, reiterating Cuba’s strong condemnation of such measures. Implementation of unilateral economic coercive measures undermined welfare and hampered human rights, and impeded development. Their promulgation highlighted the true policies of those States claiming to be free trade advocates, but that really obstructed free trade.
She said her country was aware of the impact of such measures on development, having been a victim of them for nearly five decades. The United States’ blockade had negatively impacted nearly every aspect of the country’s life. That policy qualified as an act of “genocide”, as Cuba could not export to or import from the United States, or use the dollar in its foreign transactions. On 26 October, Cuba had presented a draft resolution to the Assembly on ending that embargo. Adopted overwhelmingly, it had reiterated the global community’s strong rejection of the “absurd and irrational” practice of imposing unilateral coercive measures as a means of political and economic compulsion. Cuba would continue to work with the majority of the community of nations to eliminate such measures once and for all.
Introduction of Draft
ISMAEL GASPAR MARTINS (Angola), speaking on behalf of the Member States of the Zone of Peace in the South Atlantic, introduced the draft resolution on Zone of Peace and Cooperation of the South Atlantic (document A/65/L.22), saying that the Zone had been in existence since 1986 and was a mechanism of South-South cooperation, which brought together 24 countries in Africa and South America. Its members were key players in the international arena and were guided by the desire to widen cooperation in the field of political and diplomatic concerted action, so as to give a greater expression to their common global interests.
He said that the Zone members were fully committed to democracy and political pluralism, and to the promotion of human rights and fundamental freedoms, including the right to development. The members actively pursued cooperation on issues such as transnational organized crime, illicit trade in small arms, scientific research and environmental protection. He noted a series of workshops convened by the Zone members since 2007, which had focused on such topics as economic cooperation and nuclear non-proliferation, and implementing global and national legal instruments to curb the spread of small arms.
Another workshop had adopted the Luanda Declaration, which, among other things, had highlighted sustainable use of marine genetic resources, he said. Most recently, the Zone members had met in Brasilia form 6 to 7 December to further refine areas for greater cooperation and had agreed on the need for enhanced exchange of information on food safety and security, among other issues. Overall, the Zone members were committed to the notion of peace and sustainable development, and the resolution before the Assembly highlighted that belief.
Action on Text
Following that statement, the Assembly adopted the resolution without a vote.
Speaking in explanation of position after action, the representative of the United Kingdom welcomed continuing cooperation among the members of the Zone of peace in the South Atlantic. However regarding the current resolution’s reference to the Luanda Declaration, he reiterated his Government’s well known position on the Falkland Islands. The United Kingdom had no doubt about the sovereignty of those Islands and considered that there could be no negotiations on the issue unless and until the islanders so wished.
Assembly President Joseph Deiss announced that consideration of the Assembly’s item on multilingualism was postponed.
JOHN FREEMAN, Deputy Director General of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), said that the importance of cooperation between the United Nations and organizations was a frequently reaffirmed. It was important to continue to work in the spirit of partnership, and in that light, the reports of OPCW for 2008 and 2009 were before the Assembly. Considerable progress in the destruction of chemical weapon stockpiles had been made, with over 63 per cent of all chemical stockpiles eliminated. Two major possessor States, the United States and Russian Federation, were making major strides in eliminating their stockpiles, while Libya, after some delays, had started the destruction of its stockpiles. Over the period under review, Iraq had joined the Chemical Weapons Convention, and was currently receiving support from OPCW for the complex elimination procedure.
He said that despite their best efforts to date, both major possessor States had said that they were unlikely to meet the final destruction deadline of 29 April 2012. Nonetheless, the OPCW was approaching the post-disarmament era. By 2012, the great majority of chemical weapons would have been destroyed. The Convention’s non-proliferation aspects would remain relevant — aspects that would be crucial to the long-term success of the Convention. In that light, the Director-General had decided to establish an independent advisory panel to make recommendations for the future of the organization. The panel would convene for its first meeting in The Hague this week. Additionally, under the Convention, States parties were obliged to address any breach of the treaty, which was an important practical measure.
The Convention, he continued, also required that States parties comply with Security Council resolution 1540 (2004). OPCW’s assistance to States was essential to implementing that resolution. With 188 States parties, the convention was a disarmament instrument with among the widest membership. In the coming years, OPCW looked forward to making a substantive contribution to the establishment of a nuclear-weapon-free zone in the Middle East. It would also help the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) to celebrate the 2011 International Year of Chemistry, and would host related events during the coming year.
Introduction of Drafts
Introducing the draft resolution on Cooperation between the United Nations and the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) (document A/65/L.6), on behalf of that organization, ZOYA KOLONTAI (Belarus) said the CSTO secretariat had developed contacts with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), the Security Council and Department of Political Affairs, among others. Also, a joint declaration of cooperation had been signed in March. In the area of peacekeeping, CSTO aimed to strengthen international and regional stability.
Speaking next in her national capacity, she informed the Assembly that on 10 December, the Council for Collective Security -- the highest body of CSTO – had addressed 33 agenda items and taken decisions relating to a declaration on the peacekeeping forces of CSTO. Belarus would continue to work with regional organizations, notably on General Assembly decisions on cooperation. CSTO’s declaration also noted the United Nations central role in post-conflict peacebuilding, among other things.
Taking the floor next, WILFRIED I. EMVULA (Namibia) introduced the draft resolution on Cooperation between the United Nations, national parliaments and the Inter-Parliamentary Union (document A/65/L.11), saying that as the current holder of the Union’s presidency, Namibia had sponsored the draft text, which sought to carry forward the Union’s partnership with the United Nations. Indeed, it had been only eight years since the Union had gained observer status in the Assembly, and the road travelled together had been an impressive one. The draft served as a follow-up to the Third World Conference of Speakers of Parliaments, held earlier this year in Geneva, the outcome of the Millennium Development Goal summit. It also sought to advance the vision of the Union’s President to build a strategic partnership with the United Nations.
He said the draft text’s operative paragraphs were based largely on language agreed to in 2008, which established that, rather than examining relations between the two organizations, the Assembly would examine how the United Nations engaged with national parliaments. The Union’s report on how parliaments organized their work with the Assembly, referenced in the resolution, provided a starting point for that discussion. New elements included the potential for cooperation between the Union and UN Women in such areas as institutional gender mainstreaming, gender-sensitive legislation and implementation of United Nations resolutions. The draft text had been inspired by the need to enhance the parliamentary dimension at the United Nations. After orally correcting the draft text, he requested that it be adopted by consensus.
BYRGANYM AITIMOVA (Kazakhstan), introducing the draft resolution on Cooperation between the United Nations and the Eurasian Economic Community (EurAsEC) (document A/65/L.32), stated that Kazakhstan strongly supported collaboration between the United Nations and the Community and its strengthening, and would continue to make a significant contribution to overcoming contemporary problems and challenges at both the regional and global levels. As EurAsEC was developing rapidly, bolstering that cooperation could go a long way to addressing diverse key issues, including transport, energy, tourism, environmental protection, migration, and education, and especially overcoming emergency situations. Steps had been taken to establish a customs union, a free trade area and a single energy market. Intensive and concrete actions were now in accordance with the attainment of the Millennium Development Goals, and other achievements were made throughout the year.
She said that EurAsEC had become an important partner of the United Nations system. The representative urged Member States to note the progress achieved by EurAsEC in its cooperation with the Economic Commission for Europe, the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), as well as the United Nations Industrial Development Organization(UNIDO), the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), and others. Kazakhstan considered the adoption of the draft resolution by consensus as a very important milestone and thanked all the delegations that had sponsored it and participated in its elaboration.
Turning next to a draft resolution on cooperation between the United Nations and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) (document A/65/L.29) and speaking on behalf of the member States of that organization, Ms. Aitimova said that the SCO charter strengthened peace, security and development of good-neighbourly and friendly relations between States in the region. SCO had enjoyed observer status with the United Nations General Assembly since 2004, and cooperated closely with the United Nations system on most of its major mandate areas and activities.
She said that the resolution before the Assembly enunciated the overall goals and programmes of SCO, aimed at strengthening peace, security and stability in the region, through countering terrorism, extremism, trafficking and other forms of transnational crime. It also highlighted activities for promoting overall cooperation in the region. SCO’s issues converged with those of the United Nations and its global agenda, and the United Nations continued to hold meetings with the organization, including annual consultations with the heads of United Nations regional organization. Among other actions, the resolution before the Assembly urged the United Nations agencies to cooperate with SCO and explore new avenues of relevant cooperation.
Introducing the draft resolution on Cooperation between the United Nations and the League of Arab States (document A/65/L.33) on behalf of the Arab Group, AAREF ABDULLA ALTENAIJI (United Arab Emirates) said the text recognized the need to strengthen that cooperation in order to achieve the aims of objectives shared by the two organizations, including those set out in the United Nations Charter. It called on the United Nations and its specialized agencies to strengthen cooperation towards bringing an end to all forms of racism and discrimination and towards the exercise of self-determination for all. One of the League’s main goals was to bring an end to the occupation of all Palestinian and Arab lands, and strengthened and enhanced cooperation with the United Nations, particularly in connection with ensuring the implementation of all resolutions and decisions on that matter.
Following that, TIBOR TOTH, Executive Secretary of the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO), briefed the Assembly on the status of the test-ban Treaty and the work of the Commission. He said the body had worked to maintain international peace and security through collective action, aimed at ridding the world of nuclear weapons. Active and sustained cooperation in the field of nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament reinforced cooperation between and among States, and international organizations was vital for achieving that noble ambition.
He said that the Preparatory Commission worked closely with the United Nations; enhanced cooperation in the field of nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament reinforced all security structures that promoted international peace and security. Such cooperation was a necessity to realize peace and security in a world free of nuclear weapons. Much of the past decade had witnessed an erosion of multilateralism and a scaling back of previous nuclear disarmament commitments, and CTBTO had felt the full brunt of such challenges. Yet, despite the less than favourable political environment, the Treaty had endured and some solid progress had been made.
CTBTO promised to be, as it always had been, a uniting force in the multilateral system, he said. Indeed, the international community had rallied behind the instrument, bringing it to the ratification needed for its entry into force. Since he had last addressed the Assembly, two additional States had signed it and eight had deposited their instruments of ratification. Overall, some 182 countries had signed the Treaty, and 153 had ratified it. The Treaty was and remained the “rallying point” for nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation. What lay behind that political determination was the desire to advance the Treaty’s operation and bring an end to nuclear weapons, as well as establish global norms against nuclear testing. But, for the Treaty to enter into force, the signature and ratification of the remaining nine “Annex II” States was still required.
He said CTBTO was clearly of great significance for the global disarmament and non-proliferation regime. It had a key role to play in today’s security environment. More than 2,000 tests had been conducted prior to the Treaty’s conclusion in 1996. Each test had eroded global security and widened the gap in political trust. In the past decade, there had only been two nuclear explosions. “The difference is clear. But it is high time for constructive action,” he said, stressing that the Treaty’s entry into force might be the single defining factor for the nuclear non-proliferation regime for the next 30 years. “We must seize this moment. There is no room for complicity; no place for inaction. This is the moment of truth.”
JOHANN PASCHALIS the introduced a draft resolution on Cooperation between the United Nations and the Preparatory Commission of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (document A/65/L.34), speaking as Chair of the thirty-fifth session of the Commission, said the text aimed to ensure that the important issue would remain on the Assembly’s agenda. Indeed, CTBTO was an important measure towards accomplishing the shared goal of nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation. Though it had not yet entered into force, he welcomed renewed momentum towards that important objective. To that end, he stressed that all efforts must be made to bring CTBTO into force “without delay and without conditions.” Moreover, while the various moratoria on nuclear testing were welcomed, they could not replace the legally binding commitments set out in the Treaty.
ANASTASSIS MITSIALIS (Greece) introduced the draft resolution on Cooperation between the United Nations and the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Organization (BSEC) (document A/65/L.35), explaining that BSEC was the oldest, most institutionally mature and representative regional economic organization in the wider Black Sea Area, which had received considerable attention in recent years as a transport hub between Europe and Asia. Increasing cooperation within the area, as well as between BSEC and other regional or international organizations, was a safe way of easing tensions and creating necessary preconditions to address regional challenges. The United Nations could provide an important contribution to regional confidence building and there were ample opportunities to increase cooperation, notably in areas where BSEC was most active.
He said such priority areas as the environment, transport, energy, good governance, trade and economic development and combat of organized crime could provide the basis for other joint projects. Under Greece’s chairmanship, BSEC had expanded into “green development and entrepreneurship”, aiming to foster business synergies in that dynamic sector. BSEC Ministers of Foreign Affairs had adopted a declaration on combating climate change, which conveyed a common vision for “greening” the Black Sea. Cooperation should be enhanced with the Economic Commission for Europe, UNIDO and Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). In closing, he expressed hope the resolution would be adopted without a vote, as in the past.
Introducing the draft resolution on Cooperation between the United Nations and the Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) (document A/65/L.40), ESHAGH AL HABIB (Iran) said the text invited relevant United Nations bodies to join efforts to attain sustainable economic development in the ECO region, whose member States had vigorously pursued the United Nations goals by removing trade barriers, promoting intra-regional trade, effectively using their regional agricultural and industrial potential and cooperating in the combat of narcotics, among other things.
He explained that projects had also been undertaken in priority areas including energy, trade, transportation and drug control also had been undertaken. The text highlighted members’ overall satisfaction with United Nations efforts to extend technical and financial assistance to ECO and encouraged continued support. Indeed, ECO members were committed to realizing their goals, in cooperation and assistance with their partners, including the United Nations. In closing, he made a correction to operative paragraph 6 of the draft, replacing the words “States members” with “member States”.
FAZLI CORMAN ( Turkey), as the current chair of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, introduced a draft resolution on cooperation between the United Nations and the Council of Europe (document A/65/L.41). The United Nations had been cooperating with the Council for a long time, as the Council was a significant actor in defending and promoting the principles of human rights, democracy, the rule of law, and others. It had been integral in evolving common norms and solving problems in Europe.
He said that the draft resolution demonstrated the wide range of areas in which the United Nations and the Council cooperated, and in which the Council assisted the United Nations – including the protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms; the rule of law; the fight against racism, intolerance, and xenophobia; the fight against trafficking in persons; children’s rights; women’s empowerment; the promotion of intercultural dialogue; and the fight against trans-national crime. As the current Chair of the Committee of Ministers of the Council, Turkey thanked the outgoing Chair, which had acted as a co-facilitator during recent consultations, as well as the member States who had helped to create the text currently before the General Assembly. Turkey called upon all Member States of the Assembly to further strengthen cooperation between the two organizations.
ALEXANDER A. PANKIN ( Russian Federation) said that his delegation agreed with the statements made on CSTO and SCO, which was made by the representative of Kazakhstan. He wished to pay particular attention to the work of EurAsEC, in whose actions the Russian Federation was integral, including especially the establishment of the economic anti-crisis fund and others. The single economic area established by EurAsEC would soon start to work, creating free movement of capital, mutual access to infrastructure and other benefits. Cooperation between the United Nations and EurAsEC was accurately reflected in the draft resolution. Development between the Eurasian Bank and EurAsEC was essential, especially in the development of partnerships.
On a separate note related to BSEC, he said the Russian Federation supported efforts to step up the organization’s practical impact and the development of projects, including a ring road around the Black Sea, cooperation in mitigating the impact of emergencies and in fighting transnational crime. As mentioned by the representative of Greece, the issue of the environment was also a major part of that resolution, and the Russian Federation believed that was an essential component of the text. The Russian Federation was in favour of further strengthening the cooperation between BSEC and the United Nations.
MAGED A. ABDELAZIZ (Egypt), noting that his country had introduced to the Assembly the agenda item of cooperation between IPU in 1996, stressed the importance of strengthening cooperation between the United Nations and national and regional parliaments, in particular through IPU. That organization made valuable contributions to many important fields, such as disarmament and nuclear non-proliferation, and addressed various specific problems of economic and social development, including globalization, trade liberalization and climate change. It also played an important role in supporting member States’ efforts to promote and protect human rights. In that context, he encouraged the IPU to work closely with the UN Women.
He said IPU could play an active and constructive role in the reform of the United Nations, including in the processes of the revitalization of the General Assembly and the reform and expansion of the Security Council. The role of IPU was of equal importance in the promotion of peace, understanding and tolerance and in the promotion of dialogue among cultures, civilizations and religions. Underlining also the importance of IPU in supporting the international community’s endeavours to achieve the internationally agreed development goals, including the Millennium Development Goals, he emphasized the need to strengthen cooperation between the Organization and IPU, including through IPU’s active engagement in major United Nations deliberative processes.
GILLES RIVARD ( Canada) said that cooperation between the United Nations and regional and other organizations was fundamental to the Organization’s success in achieving its objectives. The expertise and skills in regional organizations complemented those of the United Nations system and, acting together, they had the potential to produce results beyond the sum of the constituent parts. Efforts to make cooperation more effective must be guided by respect for each organization’s mandate and by achieving the best division of labour. As an example of such cooperation, he mentioned the partnership between the United Nations and the African Union, especially in the area of peace and security. He also mentioned cooperation with Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN), and the Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie (OIF).
Noting that 2010 marked the twentieth anniversary of his country’s membership in the Organization of American States (OAS), he said that Canada viewed the organization as the key multilateral organization in the Americas and as a crucial venue for cooperation with hemispheric partners. He supported efforts to better define common priorities for OAS and to ensure that the organization’s resources were aligned with those priorities, including the promotion and defence of human rights. He highlighted the organization’s engagement with Haiti, underscoring that 15 of its member States contributed to the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH).
“Collective effort to construct flexible, responsive and effective institutions and arrangements to meet the complex political, economic and social challenges that the international community confronts at the beginning of the new millennium deserves all our support,” he said in conclusion.
TAIR MANSUROV, General Secretary of the Eurasian Economic Community (EurAsEC) stated that the United Nations was the main international forum for harmonizing the interests of various countries. Today, EurAsEC was one of the most dynamically developing international organizations. Over the past period, it had succeeding in such concrete achievements as the creation of the Customs Union between Belarus, Kazakhstan, and the Russian Federation, as well as the establishment of an Anti-Crisis Fund and a Centre for High-Technologies. The new Customs Union, as it was functioning under the framework of the EurAsEC since 1 January, implied a start of the full-fledged operation of the “common economic space” between Belarus, Kazakhstan and Russia. Based on those and other actions, at the present development stage, EurAsEC displayed the practical integration achievements, which further enhanced international interaction and promoted successful cooperation with the United Nations.
He said that, since 2010, EurAsEC, jointly with United Nations Economic Commission for Europe and the Eurasian Development Bank, had been undertaking innovation performance reviews. A pilot review dedicated to the innovation performance of Belarus had been presented earlier this month on development of investment and technology promotion networks for EurAsEC countries. The organization maintained continuous contacts with IAEA, and had worked with UNDP in June 2009 in the organization of the International High-level Forum “Uranium Tailings in Central Asia: Local Problems, Regional Consequences, Global Solution”, in Geneva. Additionally, the cultural and humanitarian sphere was gaining in importance and, according to the Memorandum of Understanding, EurAsEC cooperated with UNESCO secretariat, particularly in the field of biotechnologies. EurAsEC welcomed strengthening the role of the United Nations in the region and had sustained interest in further development of mutually beneficial cooperation.
IGOR FINOGENOV, Chairman of the Executive Board of the Eurasian Development Bank, said at the time of the Bank’s 2006 creation by the Russian Federation and Kazakhstan, it was perceived as a significant financial integration instrument. Since then, its scope had been expanded, with the new States members of Armenia, Belarus and Tajikistan, and with new opportunities to attract long-term investment. In selecting investment projects, the Bank was guided by its aim to enhance integration processes. Other international organizations also were working in that area, and the issue of cooperation and coordination was decisive in making a positive impact. Underscoring the need for a cooperation mechanism, he said the Bank had cooperated with EurAsEC and UNDP, among others.
That cooperation had allowed for improved effectiveness of investment, he said, citing the Bank’s financing of a comprehensive railway infrastructure, with transport corridors between the west and east that would increase States’ transport capacity. Moreover, the Bank, supported by United Nations special funds, had held seminars on water loss in Central Asia and was looking into small-scale hydroelectric plants for regional States. The Bank had provided support and technical assistance on that issue. Jointly with the Economic Commission for Europe, the Bank was preparing a review of development, with new investment projects to result from that study. In sum, the Bank was prepared for active cooperation in creating conditions for economic development.
RUDY SALLES, Parliamentary Assembly of the Mediterranean said the parliamentary Assembly’s ambit covered political, socio-economic and environmental issues, including the combat of terrorism and organized crime, and sensitive geopolitical issues, such as the situation in the Balkans. It also dealt with migration matters, as trafficking in human beings, and accorded importance to intercultural and inter-religious dialogue. Such subjects cut across those of the United Nations. Since its establishment, the Parliamentary Assembly had spared no effort to develop excellent relations with the United Nations, whose officials had contributed to its meetings. He cited United Nations Humanitarian Coordinator John Holmes, among others, in that context.
He noted that the Parliamentary Assembly, among other things, had participated in such United Nations events as the fifteenth Conference of Parties of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) meeting in Copenhagen and the third forum of the Alliance of Civilizations. Cooperation had been seen last month in Paris with the launch, with UNESCO, of an innovation forum for the Mediterranean. In economic affairs, a Parliamentary Assembly panel on foreign trade and investment in the Mediterranean was held last month, and had seen involvement by both the Economic Commission for Europe and the World Bank.
ANDERS JOHNSSON, Secretary General of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU), calling the related draft resolution “substantive and visionary,” affirmed that there had been much cooperation between the United Nations, national parliaments and IPU over the past two years, in such areas as the Millennium Development Goals, climate change, financing for development, gender issues, HIV/AIDS and least developed countries. The resolution acknowledged the value of such exchanges and proposed more systematic engagement between IPU and the United Nations. Saluting the establishment of UN Women, he said that IPU also had something unique to share when it came to the political empowerment of women and speaking out against violence against them. It also promoted democracy and the strengthening of parliaments.
Because of such shared priorities, he welcomed the proposal for a stand-alone agenda item at the General Assembly’s sixty-sixth Session on interaction between the United Nations, national parliaments and IPU in the effort to create a more coherent relationship between those entities and make global governance more transparent, accountable and effective. That was not about setting up new institutions, but about a candid exchange on what worked well and what did not. Earlier this year in Geneva, parliamentary leaders had started such a debate based on a survey and position paper on parliamentary interaction with the United Nations. “The time has now come to widen this discussion to include the UN Member States in the General Assembly,” he said.
LEONIDAS CHRYSANTHOPOULOS, Secretary General of the Organization of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation (BSEC), outlining the development of relations between the BSEC and the United Nations, stated that the Council of Ministers of Foreign Affairs of his organization, in their meeting in Thessaloniki on 26 November, had adopted a Joint Declaration on Combating Climate Change in the Wider Black Sea Area, which had been presented last week at the Cancún meeting by Greece, BSEC’s current chairman. That Joint Declaration, if implemented, would be a small step towards saving the planet and its “passengers”, the human race and all other living species. The planet Earth must survive to ensure a place for the living and for the lives of future generations.
He said: “The planet can survive without humanity but not vice versa. By imposing pollution taxes, pollution will not disappear. The planet does not function according to our economic strategies.” He stressed that green energy was interrelated with planetary environment protection, pointing out that human greed had exhausted, in a split second of astronomical history, the energy savings of billions of years of energy conservation made by the planet. Consequently, there was a need to start immediately operating on the vast daily energy income from the sun, wind, tide and water. And since solar cells and high-tech turbines could not be produced without oil, it was imperative to emphasize research for new technologies. He lauded and hoped for strengthened cooperation between BSEC and the United Nations System, saying the success of BSEC depended on the concreteness and effective implementation of common projects.
Right of Reply
Speaking in exercise of the right of reply, the representative of Argentina reiterated the statement made by his Foreign Minister to the Special Committee on Decolonization regarding the Malvinas and Georgia Islands and surrounding areas, which were being illegitimately occupied by the United Kingdom and were the object of disputed sovereignty. That illegitimate occupation had led the General Assembly to adopt a host of resolutions, all of which acknowledged the existence of a sovereignty dispute over the region and urged the Governments of Argentina and the United Kingdom to negotiate towards a peaceful solution to the matter. Argentina reaffirmed its legitimate right of sovereignty over the areas, which were an integral part of its national territory.
ROY LEE, Permanent Observer of the Asian-African Legal Consultative Organization (AALCO), said that his organization enhanced the role of Asian and African countries in shaping and transforming international law. As an advisory board to its members, it ensured inter-regional cooperation and exchange of information and views on matters of common concern in international legal matters. In those areas, the organization closely followed the work of the United Nations General Assembly, the International Law Commission and the specialized agencies. AALCO advocated for a new system of international relations that was both democratic and inclusive of all, including developing countries. Highlighting the work of the organization with the International Law Commission, the delegate said that it acted to forward the views of its members to the Commission, which had strengthened relationships between the two organizations. The organization also helped to promote the concerns of Asian and African in the work of that Commission.
In November, he noted, the organization had been the focus of a panel discussion that included the General Assembly’s Sixth Committee (Legal). Among issues considered had been the question of how to bring matters of common concern to Asian and African countries to the Law Commission. In that regard, the organization planned to introduce a series of meetings at United Nations Headquarters early in 2011 to introduce candidates from Asia and Africa for the forthcoming elections of the International Legal Commission and the International Court of Justice, and to allow those candidates to express their views on particular topics.
Sustainable development and environment, the Law of the Sea, and other international concerns were also priorities for his organization, he said. On the dissemination of international law, it had organized regional training on law and practice with the Government of Indonesia and the United Nations Office of Legal Affairs, which was designed to spread awareness about treaty-making and related aspects of international law. Those initiatives were designed to strengthen cooperation with the United Nations in fields related to progressive aspects of international law. Member States, regional and other organizations should share experiences and cooperate for the betterment of peoples across the world.
YAHYA MAHMASSANI, Permanent Observer of the League of Arab States, said cooperation with the United Nations was based on the tenets of the Arab League Charter towards achievement of the aims of both organizations. Such cooperation could be seen through the Arab League’s strenuous support of the African Union-United Nations Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID), and its pledge to provide assistance during the upcoming referendums in Sudan. It was also working with the United Nations and the Federal Transitional Government of Somalia in many key areas, including preventing piracy and other criminal activities in that country and the surrounding region. The League was also working with the United Nations in Iraq and Lebanon.
He said that the two organizations had exchange information on countless issues of joint concern over the years, including on peace and security. He looked forward to the United Nations assistance as the Arab league moved ahead with its efforts to launch an Arab Peace and Security Council. It was also working with the United Nations and the European Union to develop an Arab regional early warning mechanism. The League was also cooperating with the United Nations in the area of climate change. It sought to intensify its cooperation with the United Nations and the world body’s specialized agencies in many areas, including the implementation of all resolutions that emanated from those bodies.
Action on Drafts
Speaking ahead of action on the draft texts, the representative of the United States welcomed cooperation between the United Nations and the Shanghai Development Cooperation Organization, as outlined in resolution A/65/L.29. In joining consensus, the United States underscored the importance of Member States carrying out such cooperation in line with relevant international human rights norms and obligations.
The Assembly then adopted without vote the following draft resolutions: Cooperation between the United Nations and the Collective Security Organization (document A/65/L.6); Cooperation between the United Nations and the Inter-Parliamentary Union (document A/65/L.11); Cooperation between the United Nations and the Shanghai Development Cooperation Organization (document A/65/L.29); Cooperation between the United Nations and the Eurasian Economic Community (document A/65/L.32); Cooperation between the United Nations and the League of Arab States (document A/65/L.33); Cooperation between the United Nations and the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organization (document A/65/L.34); Cooperation between the United Nations and the Black Sea Economic Cooperation) Organization (document A/65/L.35); Cooperation between the United Nations and the Economic Cooperation Organization (document A/65/L.40): and Cooperation between the United Nations and the Council of Europe (documentA/65/L.41).
* *** *For information media • not an official record