17 November 2011
General Assembly
GA/SHC/4030

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

Sixty-sixth General Assembly

Third Committee

45th Meeting (PM)


Third Committee Approves Resolution Recommending Adoption of United Nations

 

Declaration on Human Rights Education and Training

 


Other Texts Address Volunteers, Racist Practices, Mercenaries, Covenants,

Indivisible Nature of Human Rights, Equitable World Order, African Institute


The Third Committee (Social, Humanitarian and Cultural) today approved by consensus a draft resolution that would have the General Assembly adopt the United Nations Declaration on Human Rights Education and Training.


By that draft text, which was one of eight drafts approved – three by recorded vote – the Assembly would invite greater efforts to promote universal respect and understanding of the issue.  Reaffirming the 1993 call of the World Conference on Human Rights held in Vienna for all States and institutions to include human rights, humanitarian law, democracy and rule of law in the curricula of all learning institutions, the Declaration says that everyone has the right to know, seek and receive information about all human rights and fundamental freedoms.


Everyone should also have access to human rights education and training, it states, and education about human rights, which includes empowering persons to enjoy and exercise their rights and to respect and uphold the rights of others, concerns all parts of society at all levels, and States should take appropriate measures to ensure the effective implementation of the Declaration.


Tabling the resolution on the Declaration, Italy’s representative said it was an accomplishment that would serve as a reference document for years to come.  The Declaration delivered a clear message that human rights education and training was not just nice to have, but was needed to promote, in a sustainable way, human rights, he said.


Although the resolution was adopted by consensus, some delegations noted differences of opinion on whether human rights training and education constituted a human right.  Speaking after the text’s adoption, the United Kingdom’s representative said her country did not believe there was a basis in international law to make human rights education and training an international human right, while the representatives of the United States and Canada said their Governments had limited national authority over education.


The Committee also approved by consensus the draft resolution on the tenth anniversary of the International Year of Volunteers, by which the General Assembly would welcome the growth and development of volunteerism since the International Year in 2001 and commend the contributions from national and international volunteers for their fundamental role in disaster prevention and recovery.


By its terms, the Assembly would decide that two plenary meetings devoted to the follow-up to the International Year and the commemoration of its tenth anniversary would include:  an opening plenary meeting, to be held at 10 a.m. on 5 December 2011, during which statements will be made by the President of the General Assembly, the Secretary-General, the chairs of the five regional groups, the representative of the host country and the Executive Coordinator of United Nations Volunteers.


The first launch of the State of the World Volunteerism Report would be held at 1 p.m., with the participation of the Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme, the chief author of the report and two selected United Nations Volunteers.  At a plenary meeting from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m., statements would be made by Member States and those with observer status in the Assembly.


The Committee also approved the draft resolution on inadmissibility of certain practices that contribute to fuelling contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance, by a vote of 120 in favour to 22 against, with 31 abstentions.


Introducing the draft, the representative of the Russian Federation said the lessons of the Second World War were being negated by those who called for a recorded vote on the text.  He noted some delegations had been seeking to convince the world that the spread of racism could not be combated by criminal prosecutions, and said such actions were disrespectful of veterans of the Second World War and lent support to those glorifying Nazism.


Making a general statement before the vote, the representative of Poland, speaking on behalf of the European Union, said there had been deterioration in the text, particularly regarding the freedom of expression, and said the regional body had proposed the draft adopt a more comprehensive legal approach with a clear perspective on human rights.


The draft resolution on the use of mercenaries as a means of violating human rights and impeding the exercise of the right of peoples to self-determination was approved by a vote of 118 in favour to 52 against, with 5 abstentions ( Chile, Colombia, Fiji, Mexico and Switzerland).  The text on the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order was approved by a vote of 117 in favour to 52 against, with 6 abstentions ( Argentina, Armenia, Chile, Costa Rica, Mexico and Peru).


Other texts approved without a vote today addressed:  International Covenants onHuman Rights; the universal, indivisible, interrelated, interdependent and mutually reinforcing nature of all human rights and fundamental freedoms; and the United Nations African Institute for the Prevention of Crime and the Treatment of Offenders.


Also today, Norway’s representative introduced the draft resolution on the protection of and assistance to internally displaced persons.  The Committee also took note of the report of the Secretary-General on the observance of the International Day for the Right to the Truth Concerning Gross Human Rights Violations and for the Dignity of Victims.


The representatives of Belarus, Jamaica, Argentina and Switzerland also spoke during action.


The Committee will reconvene at 10 a.m. Friday, 18 November, to take action on a number of outstanding draft resolutions.


Background


The Third Committee (Social, Humanitarian and Cultural) met today to hear the introduction of a draft resolution on protection of and assistance to internally displaced persons (document A/C.3/66/L.45/Rev.1) and to take action on several draft resolutions, including:  tenth anniversary of the International Year of Volunteers (document A/C.3/66/L.6/Rev.1 ); United Nations Declaration on Human Rights Education and Training (document A/C.3/66/L.65); indigenous peoples (A/C.3/66/L.26/Rev.1); inadmissibility of certain practices that contribute to fuelling contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance (document A/C.3/66/L.60); and use of mercenaries as a means of violating human rights and impeding the exercise of the right of peoples to self-determination (document A/C.3/66/L.62).


Also:  International Covenants on Human Rights (document A/C.3/66/L.23/Rev.1); the universal, indivisible, interrelated, interdependent and mutually reinforcing nature of all human rights and fundamental freedoms (document A/C.3/66/L.31/Rev.1); promotion of a democratic and equitable international order (document A/C.3/66/L.39); and United Nations African Institute for the Prevention of Crime and the Treatment of Offenders (document A/C.3/66/L.17).


Introduction of Draft Resolutions


Introducing the draft text on protection of and assistance to internally displaced persons (document A/C.3/66/L.45/Rev.1), Norway’s representative said, as the main sponsor of the biannual General Assembly resolution, it was her pleasure to introduce it this year.  This year’s resolution was a clear manifestation that the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement were more robust than ever, she said.  New elements in this year’s resolution reflected the changing circumstances of internally displaced persons regarding the role of African States, as well as climate change, environmental degradation and increased risk of natural hazards.


Action on Draft Resolutions


The Committee next took up the draft resolution on the tenth anniversary of the International Year of Volunteers (document A/C.3/66/L.6/Rev.1), which was introduced by the representative of Japan, approving it as orally corrected by consensus.


By the text’s provisions, the Assembly would welcome the successful observance in 2011 of the tenth anniversary of the International Year of Volunteers.  It would also welcome the growth and development of volunteerism since the International Year in 2001 and commend the contributions from national and international volunteers for their fundamental role in disaster prevention and recovery.


Further to the text, the Assembly would welcome the work of the United Nations Volunteers as the focal point for the tenth anniversary of the International Year, including the global volunteer conferences for the tenth anniversary held in Quito, Ankara, Manila and Dakar in preparation for the Global Volunteer Conference, co-hosted with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, held in Budapest from 15 to 17 September 2011, as well as the Department of Public Information/Non-Governmental Organizations Conference, held in Bonn, Germany, from 3 to 5 September 2011.


By other terms, the Assembly would decide that two plenary meetings devoted to the follow-up to the International Year and the commemoration of its tenth anniversary would include:  an opening plenary meeting, to be held at 10 a.m. on 5 December 2011, during which statements will be made by the President of the General Assembly, the Secretary-General, the chairs of the five regional groups, the representative of the host country and the Executive Coordinator of the United Nations Volunteers.  The first launch of the State of the World Volunteerism Report would be held at 1 p.m., with the participation of the Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme, the chief author of the report and two selected United Nations Volunteers.  At a plenary meeting from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m., statements would be made by Member States and those with observer status in the Assembly.


The Committee then took up the draft resolution on the United Nations Declaration on Human Rights Education and Training (document A/C.3/66/L.65), which was tabled by the representative of Italy, speaking on behalf of the Platform for Human Rights Education and Training, which also included Costa Rica, Morocco, Philippines, Senegal, Slovenia and Switzerland.  He said today’s adoption would be one step closer to the formal declaration by the General Assembly.  It was a clear accomplishment of work begun in 2007, supporting initiatives of human rights education and training at all levels.


The Platform was convinced it would serve as a reference document for years to come, he said.  The Declaration provided a clear and precise definition of human rights education and training, its scope and principles and implementation.  It also paved the way for follow-up at national, regional and international levels, and delivered a clear message that human rights education and training was not just nice to have, but was needed to promote, in a sustainable way, human rights.


The Committee approved the draft resolution by consensus.


The text would have the Assembly adopt the United Nations Declaration on Human Rights Education and Training annexed to the present resolution.  Inviting Governments, agencies and organizations of the United Nations system, and intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations to intensify their efforts to disseminate the Declaration and to promote universal respect and understanding thereof, the Assembly would also request the Secretary-General to include the text of the Declaration in the next edition of Human Rights:  A Compilation of International Instruments.


Speaking after action, the representative of the United Kingdom said human rights education and training would lead to better outcomes for citizens.  However, the United Kingdom did not believe there was a basis in international law that made it an international human right.  The United Kingdom understood that the draft resolution did not create or recognize a human right for human rights training and education.  But, that legal position did not diminish the importance its Government placed on the matter, and it would seek to promote human rights education and training wherever possible.


The representative of the United States said it was proud to have taken an active role in drafting the document.  There were many differences of opinion on whether human rights education and training was a human right, and the United States was among the number of States that did not recognize it as one.  His Government had limited authority over education at a national level, but stressed that human rights education should not be used to suppress freedom of expression in any way.  Additionally, because the United States was not part of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, it was not reaffirming obligations under it.


The representative of Canada said her Government was pleased to join consensus on the resolution.  Although it also did not recognize the right to human rights education, it regarded it as an important aspect of human rights.


The Committee then took note of the report of the Secretary-General on the observance of the International Day for the Right to the Truth Concerning Gross Human Rights Violations and for the Dignity of Victims (document A/66/335).


The Committee postponed action on the draft resolution on rights of indigenous peoples (document A/C.3/66/L.26/Rev.1) to the end of the meeting in anticipation of an assessment on its budgetary implications.


The Committee then took up the draft resolution on inadmissibility of certain practices that contribute to fuelling contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance (document A/C.3/66/L.60), which was introduced by the representative of the Russian Federation, who noted the “interregional” nature of support for the text.  He said the Member States jointly commemorated the victory in the Second World War last year.  During that conflict, heinous crimes had been committed, as was affirmed during the Nuremburg Tribunal.  Currently, however, the lessons of that war were being negated by those who called for a recorded vote on that text.  He wondered why during work on the text, some delegations started talking about difficulties in defining those who comprised the anti-Hitler coalition.


He further noted that some delegations had been seeking to convince the world that the spread of racism could not be combated by criminal prosecutions.  He said it was inadmissible to glorify those who were involved in former Nazi crimes, including whitewashing the crimes of members of the SS.  Such actions were disrespectful of veterans of the Second World War and lent a hand to those glorifying Nazism.  He said that 20 or 30 years ago, when most veterans were still alive, the kinds of arguments made against the text would not have been put forward.  “We do not have the right to reject our common history,” he said.


Making a general statement before action, the representative of Belarus said that the issue of racism and racial discrimination continued to be a problem in the modern world.  Incidents of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance were included in the Special Rapporteur’s report.  The Russian Federation had rightly recalled the anniversary of the Nuremburg Tribunal, the Charter of which was approved by the first session of the United Nations General Assembly.  The virus of Nazism must be eradicated forever, she argued, stressing that her Government could not agree that the use of swastikas and other Nazi symbols were defensible under freedom of expression.  Moreover, her delegation believed that by helping to draw the attention of young people to what was good and what was bad, the draft resolution had practical value.


The Chair informed the Committee that a recorded vote had been requested.  Asked by the Russian Federation who had made that request, he said the United States had called for the vote.


Making a general statement before the vote, the representative of Poland, speaking on behalf of the European Union, said the bloc reiterated its steadfast commitment to combating racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance.  The values that neo-Nazism and other such ideologies sought to undermine – namely that all individuals were born free and equal in dignity and rights – were at the core of what the United Nations stood for.  Thus, the fight against all those ideologies must be a common effort conducted in the framework of the fight against racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance.  Extremist purposes, rhetorical and selective approaches must be avoided.  The initiatives aiming to bring the world community towards its goal of eliminating racism should bring States together, not divide them.


To that end, she said the text had deteriorated, particularly regarding the freedom of expression and the role of the Special Rapporteur, among other things.  As in previous years, the European Union had proposed that the draft adopt a more comprehensive legal approach with a clear perspective on the human rights approach to fighting racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance.  It would have liked to see the inaccurate representation of the judgments of the Nuremburg Trial corrected.  The issue of monuments and memorials - on which the resolution placed a particular attention - should be dealt with appropriately by the States concerned.  The reference in operative paragraph 9 to “increased political and legal vigilance” left room for various and inappropriate interpretations, and raised concerns about the independence of the judiciary and the freedom of expression.  Further, the text’s requests to the Special Rapporteur were not appropriate in light of the independence of that special procedure’s mandate.  In addition, the new language on civil society in operative paragraph 26 was also unacceptable.


Speaking in explanation of vote before the vote, the representative of the United States said his Government supported many elements included in the text.  It condemned without reservation all forms of religious intolerance or hatred.  It remained concerned, however, that the draft failed to distinguish between actions and statements that were distasteful and those that should be criminally prohibited.  The United States did not consider curtailing expression to be an effective means of combating racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance.  Freedom of speech must be robustly protected even when it was hateful, he stressed, noting his Government’s reservation to Article 4 of the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination. 

The best antidote to intolerance was not criminalizing speech, but proactive outreach to minority and religious groups and a robust defence of freedom of opinion and expression.


Proceeding to the vote, the Committee approved the draft resolution by a vote of 120 in favour to 22 against, with 31 abstentions.


By that text, the Assembly would be alarmed at the spread in many parts of the world of various extremist political parties, movements and groups, including neo-Nazis and skinhead groups, as well as similar extremist ideological movements.  It would emphasize the need to end contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance that contribute to the spread of various extremist political parties, movements and groups, including neo-Nazis and skinhead groups, and would call upon States to take more effective measures in accordance with international human rights law to combat those phenomena, which pose a real threat to democratic values.


It would also reaffirm that, according to article 4 of the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, States parties to that instrument are under the obligation:  to condemn all propaganda and all organizations that are based on ideas of racial superiority or that attempt to justify or promote racial hatred and discrimination in any form; to adopt immediate and positive measures to eradicate all incitement to, or acts of, such discrimination; to declare as an offence punishable by law all dissemination of ideas based on racial superiority or hatred, and incitement to racial discrimination, as well as all acts of violence or incitement to such acts against any race or group of persons of another colour or ethnic origin, and also the provision of any assistance to racist activities, including the financing thereof; to declare illegal and prohibit organizations and all other propaganda activities that promote and incite racial discrimination; and to prohibit public authorities or public institutions, national or local, from promoting or inciting racial discrimination.  The Assembly would also decide to remain seized of the issue.


Speaking in explanation of vote after the vote, Jamaica’s representative voiced support for efforts to eliminate racism and racial discrimination and noted that her Government had voted in support of the resolution.  Nevertheless, it considered that operative paragraph 18 did not constitute any restrictions on access to and freedom of information, including access to the internet.


The Committee then took up the draft resolution on the use of mercenaries as a means of violating human rights and impeding the exercise of the right of peoples to self-determination (document A/C.3/66/L.62), which was introduced by the representative of Cuba, who noted that this year the draft expressed concern about the allegations of serious human rights violations involving mercenaries and private military and security companies, including summary executions, rape, torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment.


The Chair informed the Committee that a recorded vote had been requested.  Asked by Cuba which delegation had called for the vote, he said the request was made by the United States.


Speaking in explanation of vote before the vote, Poland’s representative, on behalf of the European Union, said the bloc recognized the danger and deep impact that contemporary uses of mercenaries had on conflicts.  Neither the Committee nor the Human Rights Council, however, were the proper venues for addressing the use of mercenaries.  Moreover, their use should not be tackled first and foremost from the perspective of human rights violations and the right to self-determination.  Private military and security companies should instead be properly regulated and held accountable to international law.  The issue of regulation of private military and security companies was connected and bound to several parts of international law, including the use of force, humanitarian law, State responsibility and international human rights law.


Noting that the Montreux Document, among others, provided the framework for dealing with the issues, she said the European Union was not in the position to support the draft resolution and would vote against it.


The representative of the United States said his Government took very seriously issues relating to the accountability of private security contractors.  The way to deal with those issues, however, was through robust national legislation.  He also noted relevant efforts to raise standards, including the Montreux Document.  The United States was encouraged by recent discussions on the issue, including suggestions that the open-ended intergovernmental Working Group should explore alternatives to an international convention.  Unfortunately, the draft prejudged that outcome and rushed to support a poorly considered, legally binding international instrument.


He said that by attempting to build on the recommendations of the Working Group on mercenaries, it would result in a time-consuming process that was unlikely to have the intended impact.  Indeed, it would likely prohibit military and police training programmes.  It could also impact United Nations humanitarian and peacekeeping efforts, many of which relied on such private companies.  At a minimum, devoting resources to developing an international instrument was premature in light of ongoing efforts.  For these reasons, the United States regretted that it must call for a vote on the draft and that it would vote against the text.


The Committee then approved the draft resolution by a vote of 118 in favour to 52 against, with 5 abstentions ( Chile, Colombia, Fiji, Mexico and Switzerland).


By that text, the Assembly would be extremely alarmed and concerned about recent mercenary activities in some developing countries in various parts of the world, including in areas of armed conflict, and the threat they pose to the integrity of and respect for the constitutional order of the affected countries.  Convinced also that mercenaries or mercenary-related activities are a threat to peace, security and the self-determination of peoples and an obstacle to the enjoyment of all human rights by peoples, the Assembly would call upon all States that have not yet done so to consider taking the action necessary to accede to or ratify the International Convention against the Recruitment, Use, Financing and Training of Mercenaries.


The Assembly would condemn recent mercenary activities in developing countries and also condemn any form of impunity granted to perpetrators of mercenary activities and to those responsible for the use, recruitment, financing and training of mercenaries, and urge all States, in accordance with their obligations under international law, to bring them, without distinction, to justice.


It would request the Working Group to continue the work already done by the previous Special Rapporteurs on the strengthening of the international legal framework for the prevention and sanction of the recruitment, use, financing and training of mercenaries, taking into account the proposal for a new legal definition of a mercenary drafted by the Special Rapporteur in his report to the Commission on Human Rights at its sixtieth session, including the elaboration and presentation of concrete proposals on possible complementary and new standards aimed at filling existing gaps, as well as general guidelines or basic principles encouraging further protection of human rights, in particular the right of peoples to self-determination, while facing current and emergent threats posed by mercenaries or mercenary-related activities.


The Assembly would request the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), as a matter of priority, to publicize the adverse effects of the activities of mercenaries on the right of peoples to self-determination and, when requested and where necessary, to render advisory services to States that are affected by those activities.  The Assembly would also request the Secretary-General and the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to provide the Working Group with all the assistance and support necessary for the fulfilment of its mandate, and it would request the Working Group to consult States and intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations in the implementation of the present resolution and to report, with specific recommendations, to the General Assembly at its sixty-seventh session its findings.


Lastly, it would decide to consider at its sixty-seventh session the question of the use of mercenaries as a means of violating human rights and impeding the exercise of the right of peoples to self-determination under the item entitled “Right of peoples to self-determination”.


Speaking in explanation of vote after the vote, Argentina’s delegate said his Government believed the draft should be interpreted in keeping with the resolutions of the General Assembly and the Special Committee on Decolonization, which recognized expressly the existence of a sovereignty dispute between Argentina and the United Kingdom, and that the only solution was bilateral negotiations, as mandated by United Nations resolutions, bearing in mind the interests of the population.  Further, the illegitimate occupation by the United Kingdom of the Malvinas Islands, South Georgias and South Sandwich Islands and the surrounding maritime areas rendered the issue of self-determination inapplicable.


The representative of the United Kingdom said his Government had no doubt about its sovereignty over the Falkland Islands and others.  It attached great importance to the principle of self-determination as defined in the United Nations Charter and International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.


Responding, Argentina’s representative reiterated all terms in the statement by his foreign minister before the Special Political and Decolonization Committee on 21 June 2011.  The Malvinas Islands, South Georgias and South Sandwich Islands and the surrounding maritime areas were the sole territory of Argentina.  The illegal occupation by the United Kingdom had led the General Assembly to adopt a number of resolutions, all of which recognized the sovereignty dispute and urged both States to find a solution.  The Special Committee on Decolonization had repeatedly spoken to that, most recently in its resolution of 21 June.  The Argentine Government reaffirmed its legitimate rights to sovereignty over the islands, which were an integral part of the national territory of Argentina.


The Committee then turned to a draft resolution on the International Covenants on Human Rights (document A/C.3/66/L.23/Rev.1), which was presented by the representative of Sweden on behalf of the Nordic countries.


The Committee approved the draft resolution without a vote.


That text would have the Assembly welcome the annual report of the Human Rights Committee submitted at its sixty-fifth session, as well as the report of the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights on its forty-second and forty-third sessions and on its forty-fourth and forty-fifth sessions.  The Assembly would also invite the Chairs of the Committees to address and engage in an interactive dialogue with its Members at the General Assembly at its sixty-seventh and sixty-eighth sessions.  The Secretary-General would be requested to keep the Assembly informed of the status of the International Covenants on Human Rights and the Optional Protocols thereto, including all reservations and declarations.


Speaking in explanation of position, the representative of the United States thanked the Nordic countries for the good work tabling the resolution.


Next, the Committee turned to the draft resolution on the universal, indivisible, interrelated, interdependent and mutually reinforcing nature of all human rights and fundamental freedoms (document A/C.3/66/L.31/Rev.1), which was introduced by the representative of Brazil.


Acting without a vote, the Committee approved that text.


By that text, the Assembly would reaffirm that all human rights are universal, indivisible, interrelated, interdependent and mutually reinforcing, and that all human rights - civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights - must be treated in a fair and equal manner, on the same footing and with the same emphasis.  Further stressing that the existence of widespread extreme poverty inhibits the full and effective enjoyment of human rights, it would also reaffirm that States should take steps to eliminate obstacles to development resulting from failure to observe all rights.


The Assembly would, by other provisions, encourage the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, treaty bodies, special procedures of the Human Rights Council and other mandate holders to continue to improve their efforts to take into account the universal, indivisible, interrelated, interdependent and mutually reinforcing nature of all human rights in the fulfilment of their mandates.


Speaking in explanation of position, the representative of Poland, speaking on behalf of the European Union, said it attached the same importance to economic, social and cultural rights as civil and political rights.  All human rights were universal, interdependent and interrelated and must receive the same emphasis, so the European Union was uncomfortable that the right to development was the only right singled out twice in the draft resolution, which was supposed to be universal.


The representative of Switzerland said it was satisfied to join in the consensus, but would like to express concern that certain aspects of the resolution could be interpreted as calling into question what was achieved in the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action.  All human rights were interdependent and should receive equal emphasis, so Switzerland had difficulty recognizing the resolution’s emphasis on the right to development.


The Committee then took up the draft resolution on the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order (document A/C.3/66/L.39), which was tabled by the representative of Cuba.


The text would have the Assembly affirm that everyone is entitled to a democratic and equitable international order and that a democratic and equitable international order fosters the full realization of all human rights for all.  In that context, it would call upon all States to fulfil their commitment expressed in Durban, South Africa, during the World Conference against Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance to maximize the benefits of globalization through strengthening and enhancement of international cooperation to increase equality of opportunities for trade, economic growth and sustainable development, global communications through the use of new technologies and increased intercultural exchange.


By further terms, the Assembly would welcome the decision of the Human Rights Council, in resolution 18/6, to establish a new special procedures mandate of Independent Expert on the promotion of a democratic and equitable order and request that the Secretary-General and the High Commissioner for Human Rights provide all the human and financial resources necessary for the effective fulfilment of the Independent Expert’s mandate.  The Independent Expert would be requested to submit an interim report to the Assembly at its sixty-seventh session.


Speaking in explanation of vote before the vote, the representative of Poland, on behalf of the European Union, said it believed it was necessary to continue to work towards a democratic and equitable world order, but several elements in the draft text moved far beyond the scope of the Third Committee and were not dealt with in a holistic and appropriate way.  Members of the European Union would be voting against the draft resolution, she said.


The Committee then approved the draft resolution by a vote of 117 in favour to 52 against, with 6 abstentions ( Argentina, Armenia, Chile, Costa Rica, Mexico and Peru).


Finally, the Committee took up the draft resolution on the United Nations African Institute for the Prevention of Crime and the Treatment of Offenders (document A/C.3/66/L.17), which was introduced by Uganda’s delegate, on behalf of the African Group.  She noted the Institute’s efforts enhance the capacity of African States and read out a number of revisions and amendments to the text.


The Committee then approved the text as orally amended without a vote.


By its terms, the Assembly would welcome the decision of the Governing Board of the Institute, at its eleventh ordinary session, held in Nairobi on 27 and 28 April 2011, to carry out a review of the Institute to ensure that it is facilitated to fulfil its mandate and to assume a more prominent role in dealing with existing crime.  It would also welcome the Institute’s introduction of a cost-sharing initiative in its execution of various programmes with Member States, partners and United Nations entities.


The Assembly would, by other terms, urge all States, non-governmental organizations and the international community to continue adopting concrete practical measures to support the Institute.  The Secretary-General would be requested to intensify efforts to mobilize all relevant entities of the United Nations system to provide the necessary financial and technical support to the Institute to enable it to fulfil its mandate.  He would also be requested to continue his efforts to mobilize the financial resources necessary to maintain the Institute with the core professional staff required for its functioning.  The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime would be called on to continue to work closely with the Institute.


The Chair said that an oral statement on the programme budget implications for the draft resolution on the rights of indigenous peoples (document A/C.3/66/L.26/Rev.1) was being prepared and action on that text would be taken tomorrow.


* *** *


For information media • not an official record