18 May 2011
Economic and Social Council
ECOSOC/6478
NGO/722

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

Committee on NGOs

22nd & 23rd Meetings (AM & PM)


Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations Forwards 38 More Applicants

 

to Economic and Social Council for Special Consultative Status

 


Continuing its resumed 2011 session, the Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) today recommended special consultative status for 38 entities to the Economic and Social Council, postponing consideration of an additional 33 until answers to the Committee’s outstanding questions were supplied.


General, special or roster status is granted in accordance with such criteria as the applicant’s mandate, governance and financial regime.  Organizations enjoying general and special status can attend meetings of the Economic and Social Council and circulate statements, while those with general status can, in addition, address meetings and propose agenda items.  Roster-status non-governmental organizations can only attend meetings.  Organizations with general and special status must also submit a report every four years.


A broad range of issues were raised as delegates exchanged views on the applications, with a majority of the candidates coming from the global South.  Many of those NGOs’ activities concerned such issues as poverty alleviation, rural development, advancement of women and the rights of the child.


The application of a Serbia-based organization, the Autonomous Women's Center, sparked a discussion on the issue of sexual orientation.   Pakistan’s representative said the NGO had misrepresented facts by referring to a United Nations Declaration on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity, which did not exist.  Furthermore, he asserted that NGOs requesting Economic and Social Council consultative status should not highlight issues that were not universally accepted norms by the United Nations.


The United States’ speaker, on the other hand, maintained that NGOs could hold differing views on sexual orientation that did not conform to what certain States believed.   Israel’s delegate added that NGOs should be allowed to work on contentious issues, such as discrimination or violence, because they concerned human rights, which were universal and pertinent to the United Nations’ work.


The Committee was able to complete its review of new applications from NGOs and move on to applications deferred from the previous session.  As for persisting deferrals, some delegations expressed concern that the delays might be due to adjusting to the new paperless system.  A suggestion was even made, by the representative of the United States, that an extra Committee session could be added to the schedule, if necessary.  Both the Chair of the NGO Branch, Andrei Abramov, and Committee Chair Aydan Karamanoglu ( Turkey) assured members that no applicant would be “blacklisted” because of delays caused by technical difficulties.


The Committee will reconvene at 10 a.m., Thursday, 19 May, to continue its work.


Background


The Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) met this morning to continue its resumed session, to run through Tuesday, 24 May, for which it had before it an information note for participants (document E/C.2/2011/1).


The Committee today recommended special consultative status for the following organizations:


Abibimman Foundation, a national organization based in Ghana, working to enhance livelihoods in a peaceful and developed environment through cultural, formal and non-formal education, civic and health education, human rights and environmental protection, and to ameliorate conflict situations and promote a culture of peace, sustainable livelihoods, democracy and development.


Africa Development Interchange Network (ADIN), a national organization based in Cameroon, specializing in development promotion, poverty alleviation, people’s rights and environment protection.  Accredited in the United Nations financing for development process, ADIN works in close collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Commonwealth Foundation on issues related to financing for development and evaluation of progress in Africa towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals.


Aid The Children Network, an international organization based in Gambia, created as a professional forum consisting of individuals and organizations concerned with child protection, which works to ensure a democratic society free from child abuse, neglect and exploitation.


Asociación Nacional de Empresarios de Colombia, a national organization based in Colombia, working to expand and promote economic, social and political principles, within a free enterprise system, based upon beliefs that include human dignity, political democracy, social justice, private property and liberty.


Association pour le développement durable, a national organization based in Mauritius, working to address environmental issues influencing the socio-economic development of Mauritius and its Exclusive Economic Zone by encouraging, undertaking and promoting strategic studies and research in areas related to sustainable development.


Batool Welfare Trust, a national organization based in Pakistan,created to promote self-determination especially of economically poor women and children and to provide free legal advice to the poor population in remote areas of Pakistan.


Cameroun Terre Nouvelle is a national organization based in Cameroon that promotes culture of peace, non-violence, non-discrimination, dialogue between cultures and the fight against poverty.


Cercle d'initiative commune pour la recherche, l'environnement et la qualitè is a national organization of indigenous peoples based in Cameroon that aims to contribute to the development of the people it represents.


Childlink Foundation is a national organization based in Ghana that aims to empower the Ghanaian to realize his or her full potential.


Ensemble luttons contre le Sida is a national organization in the Democratic Republic of the Congo that aims to mitigate the impact of HIV/AIDS, eradicate sexual violence against women, ensure the advancement of women, ensure the education of vulnerable children, and reduce poverty.


Environment Support Group is a national organization in India that promotes environmental, social justice and governance initiatives, including through research, training, campaign support, and advocacy on a variety of environmental and social justice concerns.


Free Africa Foundation Ghana, a national organization based in Ghana, created to improve the quality of life of the population and to seek the realization of the full potential and human development of the community at all levels by increasing the livelihood of community members and ensuring the realization of their full potential.


Gic Technologies Nouvelles au Cameroun, a national organization based in Cameroon, working to recover and recycle computer and office equipment, and to provide training for the use of computer tools.


Godwing Osung International Foundation, Inc. (The African Project), an international organization based in Nigeria, working to promote equality among gender groups, raise up widows and “the downtrodden”, and pursue the “freedom of children” and education of citizenry by partnering with the Economic and Social Council to reach widows, orphans and less privileged individuals, and to organize health campaigns and educational seminars in rural areas where government presence is not felt.


Indira Gandhi Integral Education Centre, a national organization based in India, working to conduct research, promote development, implement training programmes and to exchange its expertise in different fields of activities by participating in United Nations conferences, seminars and others forums.


Isfahan Minority Rights and Development, an international organization based in Somalia, working to improve the situation of the country and assuage pervasive human rights violations, which appeared to bound after the collapse of the previous authorities.


National Council of Child Rights Advocates, Nigeria:  South West Zone is a national organization that aims to protect the rights of the child, coordinate the activities of all child-focused NGOs in Nigeria, and network with other stakeholders and international partners on issues of child rights.


National Rural Development Society is a national organization based in India that focuses on manpower development and training, the transfer of technology to the villages and integrated rural development.


Project Green Nigeria is a national organization in Nigeria that works with rural farmers and development partners to reduce poverty in community households through sustainable agricultural development, food security, research and development, reducing farm losses and enterprise development.


Rural Community Development Program is a national organization in Pakistan that promotes holistic socio-economic and natural resource management and development in the Kalash area, helping to improve health and education, minimize social disputes arising from time to time among the target group for cooperative resource management, and organize people against external exploiters and encroachment on their resources, culture, religion, values and norms.


Self-Help Development Facilitators, a national organization based in Nigeria, working to enhance skills and civic empowerment in the areas of good governance and poverty reduction.


Shohratgarh Environmental Society, a national organization based in India, working to promote happiness, peace and well-being in society, and to enable all women, children and men to improve their health status, livelihood opportunities, education, and food security, and to reduce the risk of disaster and environmental degradation.


Social Development International (SDI), a Cameroon-based national organization, created to promote social and economic transformation in poor communities whose inhabitants actively participate in the development process and benefit from the resulting good governance, economic prosperity, sustainable environment and social well-being of the empowered community.


SOS Education, a Côte d'Ivoire-based national organization, created to make education in Côte d'Ivoire a tool of integration, peace, stability and economic and social development, and to promote non-violence and respect for educational values.


Trust for Sustainable Livelihoods, a national organization based in Trinidad and Tobago, created to promote sustainable management of natural resources in the context of improved livelihoods for Caribbean communities.


Union internationale des voyageurs, an international organization based in Ghana, created to look after and protect travellers against all forms of illegal actions, eliminate all high taxes, and bring to public attention problems that harm national transportation by road, air and sea.


Vision Welfare Group, a national organization based in Kenya, working to eradicate poverty and fight drug abuse, especially among young people.  It also aims to bring people together to achieve development.


Western Cape Therapeutic Community Centre, a national organization based in South Africa, created to provide quality care to disadvantaged communities by providing access to substance abuse treatment and training to organizations in the substance abuse field.


Young People We Care is an international organization headquartered in Ghana, with satellite offices in the United Kingdom and Canada, which is operated by young people and adult allies who aim to educate and inform the youth on global issues, inspire them to take action, encourage their participation in global issues, identify and build sustainable partnerships aimed at youth development and provide young people with tools and resources for effective action.


Youth Bridge Foundation is a national organization based in Ghana that aims to equip the youth with appropriate information, platforms and resources that can enhance their physical, mental and socio-economic well-being and further help develop them into responsible adults.


Youth Empowerment Synergy is another national organization based in Ghana that brings together innovative and energetic groups who work with relevant stakeholders to lay the foundation for the promotion of a sustainable and productive future for young people in Ghana.


Alliance Forum Foundation is a United States-based international organization that supports a variety of activities deploying advanced technologies and innovative mechanisms to create a better world for the twenty-first century.


Asociaci ón de Federaciones y Asociaciones de Empresarias del Mediterr áneo is an international organization based in Spain that promotes equality in work and improves the conditions for women in their socio-economic, technical and professional lives to eliminate discrimination.


Centre for International Sustainable Development Law is an international organization based in Canada that promotes sustainable societies and the protection of ecosystems by advancing the understanding, development and implementation of international sustainable development law.


Children's Human Rights Centre of Albania is a national organization that works to develop and promote the respect of children and youth rights, as well as to protect children and young people from violence, abuse and exploitation.


The Committee recommended that review of the following applications be postponed, pending replies to previous or additional questions posed:


United Hatzalah (NP) is a national Emergency Medical Services organization in Israel that does not charge for its services and is composed of a network of more than 1,500 volunteer medics, paramedics and emergency medical technicians.


The representative of Venezuela asked for further clarification about the NGO’s budget and income as they related to the projects being implemented by the organization, saying it was not clear from the financial statements how funding was being used and for which projects.


The representative of Pakistan asked what the NGO meant by its statement that it operated in “ Israel and the Territories”, specifically whether that meant the Occupied Palestinian Territory.  Also, if the NGO was working in the Occupied Territory, the representative asked whether its services dealing with terrorism or warfare were provided without distinction of origin and nationality.


The representative of Sudan, then, returned to an issue discussed yesterday about the language in which an organization was required to provide its application documents, saying that the NGO’s tax certificates were in Hebrew and translated by hand; therefore, just as other representatives had objected to documents in Arabic, the NGO should present a proper translation of its tax certificate in one of the official UN languages.  The representative also asked for clarification, in writing, regarding why the NGO had changed its name.


After the representative of Belgium asked the NGO Branch of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs for clarification about the practice of providing documents when organizations were based in countries that did not use United Nations languages, the Chief of the Branch, ANDREI ABRAMOV, reiterated that the Branch had received registration documents and certificates in other languages and required an authentic translation.  However, there was a degree of judgement involved in the process and, while the Branch had checked the authenticity of documents on a few occasions, it was often necessary to take them at face value.


The representative of Morocco asked about the contribution to Economic and Social Council, and whether the organization had political orientations in the fulfilment of its objectives?  The delegate also asked about the activities it was conducting to protect civilians, particularly Palestinian civilians.


UPR Info, a national organization based in Switzerland, aims to promote and strengthen the Universal Periodic Review and, to this end, provides capacity-building tools to the different actors of the review process, such as United Nations Member States, NGOs, national human rights institutions and civil society.


The representative of China asked for further elaboration about what kind of recommendations the NGO had made to the Universal Periodic Review on how to improve the mechanism.


The representative of Switzerland stated that the NGO helped to strengthen the Universal Periodic Review and facilitate access to it by States and NGOs by providing information, documents and analysis, and by organizing conferences.  He noted that the NGO had responded to the three written questions asked during the pre-session and was sure that it would respond to the delegate’s question as soon as possible, so he hoped that the Committee would consider the organization’s application in the second round.


Voluntary Service Overseas, an international organization based in the United Kingdom, with the vision of a world without poverty, in which people work together to fulfil their potential.  The NGO promotes volunteering to fight poverty and disadvantage, bringing people together to share skills, creativity and learning to build a fairer world.


WOOMB International Ltd., an international organization based in Australia, aims to teach all women of the world to identify their fertility, infertility and time of ovulation, so that they may, then, make informed choices concerning the timing and spacing of their families in a simple, entirely natural and effective way.


World Hunger Year, Inc., a United States-based international organization, which now uses the name “WhyHunger” informally in its programmes and outreach to communicate its mission of asking why hunger persists in a world of abundant food, is a leading advocate for innovative, community-based solutions to hunger and poverty and supports grass-roots projects in the United States and several parts of the world.


Zambian International Health Alliance, a national organization with headquarters in the United States and an office in Zambia, is a medical NGO that aims to build the capacity and capability to help support the Zambian Government’s health services efforts, in order to provide quality care to those suffering from malaria, HIV/AIDS and other infectious diseases by accessing the appropriate skills, expertise and medical resources required to be used in Zambia.


Agence de développement durable de Côte d'Ivoire, an international organization based in Côte d'Ivoire, created to address the difficulties encountered by small- and medium-sized NGOs to fund and implement micro-projects.


The Chair noted that this NGO had not responded to three separate queries, and would be among those “blacklisted” at the end of the session, if replies were not received before that time.


The representative of the United States inquired as to whether any NGOs had reported difficulty with the new system, and wished to make sure that no organization was “blacklisted” due to technical difficulties and or confusion about how to supply their answers to the Committee.  She also suggested that an extra session be added if any of the NGOs had not been able to submit the necessary materials, owing to the technical changes.


The chief of the NGO branch replied that, while some difficulty had been encountered in the past, those problems appeared to have been remedied.  The Chair assured the Committee that no NGO would be “blacklisted” due to the technical changes.


The representatives of Cuba and Venezuela also participated in the discussion, stressing that no organization should be “blacklisted” due to confusion with the new system.


Anandilal Ganesh Podar Society, an international organization based in India, working to build a functional setup for understanding the overall needs of the entire Education Complex, particularly with regard to the education of girl children and disadvantaged children.


Asian-Eurasian Human Rights Forum, an international organization based in India, working to help create a special climate of solidarity and responsibility, and to identify the obstacles that come in the way of the promotion and protection of human rights.


The representative of Pakistan pointed out that, while the full application had been completed, it was not available for perusing online.  Consideration was thus postponed until the full application could be made available to delegations in writing.


Baidarie, a national organization based in Pakistan, working to promote and protect human rights, especially those of women and children, to provide credit to people, groups or community organizations for poverty alleviation, with or without any guarantee, and to provide preventive, reproductive and curative health-care services to the people, especially women and children.


The representative of India said a previous question had not been answered, which was to explain what SAP-PK (South Asia Partnership Pakistan) stood for.


Business and Professional Women Voluntary Organization — Sudan is an international organization based in Sudan that aims to empower women to rise out of poverty and ensure that women have a voice in policies that affect them and their families.  The organization assists women to enter and re-enter the workforce, and to start up and advance their business or profession.


The representative of Sudan said that, due to problems with the computers, information in the organization’s website was not accessible, so he requested that the NGO be considered at a later time.  The Committee Chair agreed.


Centre des Droits des Gens-Maroc is an organization based in Morocco that works on awareness of human rights and education for gender equality, participating through advocacy in the reform of laws to be consistent with international human rights covenants.


China Youth Development Foundation is a national organization in China that is committed to helping young people build capacity, and to improving the environment for the development of young people by providing aid services, giving a voice to the interests of young people and carrying out social advocacy.


Environmental Management for Livelihood Improvement Bwaise Facility is a national organization based in Uganda that aims to empower communities to implement development plans and programmes that promote sustainable development.


The representative of Sudan requested that consideration of the NGO be postponed.  The Committee Chair agreed to that request.


Foundation for Human Horizon is an international organization based in India, with the mission of supporting volunteer-based, honest and experienced NGOs in serving their populations’ critical needs around education, health care and welfare, without regard to religion or race, focusing on enabling the poor to empower them with necessary tools, such as education to make them prosperous and become responsible citizens.


The representative of Pakistan spoke about the NGO’s concept of strengthening local institutions, saying that he understood that those systems involved the elders of the local population and took decisions according to the traditions and culture of the community.  However, he had seen problems in some places on that account, when people made decisions based on culture and not with regard to specific laws, so he asked for further clarification on how the NGO promoted that concept while linking it to existing laws, particularly as it was dealing with sensitive issues, such as the rights of women and children.


GGS Institute of Information Communication Technology India, an international organization based in India, working to support education, reduce poverty, and to promote disarmament, indigenous communities, safe water, sustainable development, the development of industry, the environment, and the United Nations AIDS Programme (UNAIDS).


The representative of Pakistan asked for a clarification on what the NGO meant by “human security”, as the NGO seemed to define that simply as an absence of armed conflict, but the definition was, in fact, broader.


Global Conscience Initiative, a national organization based in Cameroon, working to promote a culture of peace, human rights, democracy, social justice and the rule of law in Cameroon and the greater world.


Global Economist Forum, an international organization based in Bangladesh, created to formulate policy for economic development and balance, and to facilitate for citizens of the “global village” a platform for delivering speeches, organising meetings and exchanging opinions.


The representative of Venezuela asked the NGO to specify the names of its eight member countries, as this had not previously been supplied.


Global Organization for Human Empowerment and Rights, an international organization based in Pakistan, working to empower marginalized communities and underprivileged areas with the help of education, awareness and capacity-building.


Kuchlak Welfare Society is a national Pakistan-based organization, working to undertake various projects and activities for the development of poor communities living in far-flung areas of Baluchistan, and to improve their living conditions and quality of life through providing quality educational environments, and by “bringing change in their thinking and attitudes”.


The representative of China noted that the NGO’s planned activities and projects included work with a secondary high school that was in cooperation with the Japanese Government.  She asked the NGO, since it was applying as a national organization, to further explain its cooperation with the Japanese Government, and also asked the organization if it had any cooperation with additional foreign Governments.


Life Academy of Vocational Studies, a national organization based in India, promotes the welfare and advancement of vulnerable individuals, including women, children and tribal people, as well as universal access to quality health care and primary education, facilitating a comprehensive range of health and educational services for the community.


Microbase is a national organization based in the Democratic Republic of the Congo that trains the youth and educates rural people about international issues and opportunities.


NGO's Computer Literacy Shelter Welfare, Rawalpindi is a national organization in Pakistan that aims to build and strengthen sustainable individual families, institutional and community initiatives regarding health, literacy, basic human rights and a clean environment, as well as capacity-building through partnership at all levels.


People's Life Centre is a national organization in India that aims to establish a just social order based on human values, such as love, justice, equality, brotherhood, peace and harmony by educating the oppressed of their situation and helping them to organize themselves.


Programme on Women's Economic Social and Cultural Rights is an international human rights organization in India that promotes women’s human rights, in particular economic, social and cultural rights, by bringing a gender framework to policy, law and practice at local, national, regional and international levels in both conceptual and practical realms.


The representative of Pakistan asked for details regarding the activities of the NGO’s partnership programme, such as with what countries in South Asia and what organizations it had worked.  Also, the representative stated that the NGO had provided a trust deed and, then, was asked to provide a certificate of registration as an NGO; however the certificate looked like an exemption certificate, so he asked to clarify that the appropriate certificate showing its status as an NGO had been sent to the Committee.


Rural Development Organization is a national organization in Pakistan that aims to promote a culture of tolerance and democratic norms in society; organize and build the capacities of marginalized segments of the society; promote wise management of natural resources; and act as consultants, trainers and advisors for governmental and non-governmental organizations on the subject related to sustainable development, among other objectives.


The representative of China asked for more information about the projects that the NGO said it had conducted with the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP).


Skyian Welfare Organization, a national organization based in Abbattobad, Pakistan, working to improve quality of life, provide basic services, such as health, education, sustainable livelihood and clean environment, and to help achieve the Millennium Development Goals.


The representative of India asked for a clarification about the NGO’s question regarding how to use the new system, and suggested that perhaps the NGO needed to reapply entirely.


The Chief of the NGO Branch asked if the delegate was requesting that the NGO reapply, explaining that there was a distinction between that and resubmitting the application with all the questions answered for this session.


India’s representative said that the request was for some changes to be made in the application, and noted that the NGO said they had difficulty submitting answers to the questions.


The Chief of the NGO Branch said that a simple word document that copied some elements of the previous application was feasible as a response, and he was happy to assist the NGO as necessary.


The representative of India said that a different NGO had succeeded in reapplying under the same name without closing the current application, as they had done as an attachment.


The Chair said the NGO would be sent the request to re-send the application with the corrections.


Sree Research and Charitable Trust, a national organization based in India, created to build progressive self-reliant communities and adopt a holistic approach by providing knowledge and opportunities to empower communities for literacy rates and overall development.


Africa Millennium Development Network, an international organization based in Sweden, aims to:  promote the achievements of the Millennium Development Goals in Africa by accelerating sustainable development in rural areas; promote Africa's cultural heritage and artistic works in Sweden; and assist rural economic organizations to achieve their socio-economic goals by providing training, record keeping, marketing and advisory, and produce quality control.


Autonomous Women's Center is a national organization based in Serbia that aims to:  empower women to overcome trauma caused by domestic violence, partnership violence and sexual violence through psychological and professional legal support; sensitize and educate professionals in institutions dealing with violence against women, women’s human rights and institutional procedures for protection from domestic violence; prevent all forms of violence against women; and promote women’s human rights on the individual, legal and institutional level, among other objectives.


The representative of Pakistan spurred a discussion about the issue of sexual orientation and gender identity when he asked that the NGO correct some “misrepresentations of the facts”, namely its reference to a United Nations Declaration on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity, given that there was no such declaration, and its reference to Serbia being a signatory of that declaration, given that the NGO was not representing Serbia and was just an NGO from Serbia.  With regard to the rights of women of different sexual orientation, an NGO requesting consultative status should not emphasize issues that were not universally accepted norms by the United Nations.  Additionally, he asked for a better answer to the question of what were the special health-care needs for lesbians and persons with disabilities, such as whether facilities should target each group or everyone in general.


The representative of the United States then stated that NGOs provided their views to the Committee, and that views on sexual orientation might differ and not conform to what certain States believed should be reflected.


The representative of Israel said that NGOs should be able to work on issues where there was no agreement, whether concerning discrimination or violence, because such issues were relevant to all and pertinent to the United Nations work, given that they concerned human rights, which were universal.


The representative of Bulgaria, furthermore, noted that her delegation had spoken in favour of the NGO in the previous session and confirmed support of its application, as the organization was respected and was dealing primarily with violence against women, women’s empowerment and gender rights.  She also pointed out that the NGO had acknowledged in its reply that such a declaration had not been adopted.  It also used improper terminology when indicating previously that Serbia was a signatory to a declaration, but as an NGO, that could be excused.


The Committee Chair clarified that the request from the Committee members to the NGO would be to state that the document regarding sexual orientation and gender identity was not a declaration, but a draft resolution.


The representative of Morocco also sought further clarification about the statement by the NGO that it was not an “LGBT” (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender) organization, given that it had stated that the rights of women of different sexual orientations were linked to women’s rights and that people who had sexual orientations that were not those of the majority were targeted because of their sexual orientation.  So, he wanted to know to what degree the issue of sexual orientation was part of the NGO’s activities.


Ducuum is an international organization with headquarters in Ireland that aims to:  support and encourage educational projects in areas most affected by high illiteracy among girls, parents, women and other adults who missed out on their education in Sudan; help economically disadvantaged students access tertiary level; and encourage African women, in particular Sudanese in the diaspora, to engage in self-development through employment, education and training, in order to reach their full potential.


European Union Association in the United States, an international organization, created to communicate the European Union’s positions in the United States and at the United Nations in the fields of culture, business and international relations, as well as in foreign security policy, and to promote multilateral cooperation and relationships with the United States and elsewhere.


The representative of Pakistan said replies to previous questions were insufficient and he asked that they be resubmitted.


European Window Film Association, an international organization based in Brussels, working to position the interests of the window film industry with respect to European and national decision-making bodies, influence opinions of the European Union and consumers about window films, promote window film products, and increase awareness of legislative inconsistencies concerning the use of window films and initiate corrective actions.


The Committee then turned its attention to its traditional question-and-answer session.


Before the Committee was a representative of the NGO, Program in International Human Rights Law, a United States-based international organization that furthers the teaching and study of international human rights law at Indiana University School of Law at Indianapolis, working to promote scholarship in international human rights law.


Asked about recent projects and activities by the representative of Kyrgyzstan, the NGO representative said he must refer delegates to the answer already supplied.


The representative of Cuba said she had read that the NGO had conducted different studies and provided training for the United States Defence Department at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba.  She asked about the results of any studies and what recommendations, if any, had been made.


The NGO’s representative said it was not a “training” that had been conducted, but that a senior member had supplied an affidavit for the particular case of an inmate, which formed part of the official record of the military commission.  The senior member had elucidated the fine points of international human rights law and the relevance to the trial, namely, that of David Hicks.  The representative said he could make those documents available upon request.


The representative of Kyrgyzstan asked about some of the activities conducted at conferences in other parts of the world, and if the NGO’s members had been invited to those conferences, or had been there as part of a delegation.


The NGO representative said that, with regard to the conference in Rome for the Rome Statute, Professor George Edwards had participated as an NGO observer.  With respect to other conferences, members had attended as NGO representatives during the United Nations Forum on Forests and provided United Nations delegations with information on the relevance and importance of international human rights law, with regard to environmental protection and sustainable development.


The representative of China noted that Professor Edwards was also associated to other international NGOs with consultative status with the Economic and Social Council, and asked how those organizations were related.


The representative replied that those two organizations were independent, distinct and separate from each other.


Responding to questions from the representative of Sudan, the NGO representative said that the organization was active in the African region insomuch as its interns were sent to a variety of countries to conduct their pro-bono work, including to Botswana, Ghana, Ethiopia, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, United Republic of Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.  They also worked with the United Nations Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda.  Regarding funding, he said that it came from the state of Indiana and from the Indiana University Foundation, but the programme, per se, was independent.  Further, members did not pay dues, and funds came from the law school.  The membership comprised current, as well as former international human rights law interns.  It currently had at least 11 international human rights law interns, including him.


The representative of Kyrgyzstan said he was satisfied with the answers and saw no problem granting status.  The NGO was recommended.


Un Techo Para Mi Pa ís, an international organization based in Chile, working to promote higher standards of living for impoverished families through the construction of transitional houses and the implementation of social inclusion programmes in a joint effort between university student volunteers and the community.


Responding to a question posed by the representative of Venezuela, the NGO’s representative said the process of legalization was moving forward to register in Venezuela as an NGO; it was already registered as a civil organization in that country.


Peru’s representative expressed its continued support for the NGO, and reiterated its familiarity with those projects of the NGO which had been conducted in his country.   Venezuela’s representative also expressed satisfaction with the NGO and its reply.


Status was recommended for this NGO.


Women Advocates Research and Documentation Center, an international organization based in Nigeria, created to advance education, research, self-development and positive change in society, and to promote gender equality as a principle of human rights, and as a development goal.


The representative of Venezuela asked about organizations that provided financing to the NGO, and what those funds were used for.


The NGO’s representative said that a United States-based funding agency, the National Endowment for Democracy, had supported it since 2005, with about $25,000, and since 2009, had lent support in the amount of approximately $45,000.  The work conducted with those funds was related to peacebuilding in the Niger delta, involving active with women on issues of non-violence, and on the Niger Delta Master Plan, among other activities.


Responding to questions from the representative of China regarding additional information about its activities, the representative stated that it was a “radical feminist” organization based in Nigeria, and the only work done in association with the Government of Nigeria was to build the capacity of women in decision-making.  At the time, the Government lacked the capacity to support women in decision-making.  The idea was to expand the space for women in politics in Nigeria.  They were asked by the then-Government to support that effort.  That was the only collaboration with the Nigerian Government.


Responding to further questions, including from the representative of Pakistan, the NGO’s representative said that before 2007, in Nigeria, there was no domestic violence law, but the organization had helped to put such a law in place, now known as Domestic Violence Law 2007.  The organization had worked in 42 communities across Nigeria, and had produced a “womanifesto”, which promoted, among other activities, the creation of a “gender audit” for elections.


The Committee then decided to recommend the organization for consultative status.


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For information media • not an official record