Related issues and approaches

Terrorism and disarmament

"All States, in every region - large or small, strong or weak - are vulnerable to terrorism and its consequences. They all stand to benefit from a strategy to counter it. They all have a role to play in shaping such a strategy, in implementing it, and in ensuring that it is updated continuously to respond to challenges as they evolve."1
Kofi Annan, United Nations Secretary-General
In 2006, the United Nations continued to promote international action to fight terrorism through a series of collaborative efforts with Member States, regional and international organizations.
On 2 May, following the recommendation of the 2004 High-level Panel on Threats, Challenges and Change that the Secretary-General promote a comprehensive strategy to address the threat of terrorism,2 the Secretary-General released his report entitled "Uniting Against Terrorism: Recommendations for a Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy".3 In formulating his recommendations, the Secretary-General built further on the "five Ds" which he first outlined in his keynote address to the Plenary of the International Summit on Democracy, Terrorism and Security in March 2005.4 The five components of his strategy were as follows: dissuading people from resorting to terrorism or supporting it; denying terrorists the means to carry out an attack; deterring States from supporting terrorism; developing State capacity to defeat terrorism; and defending human rights. All of these components were subsequently incorporated into the United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy adopted by the General Assembly on 8 September.5
The Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy's Plan of Action, which represented the first common approach to fight terrorism agreed to by Member States, was intended to enhance national, regional and international efforts to counter terrorism. Member States regarded terrorism as one of the most serious threats to international peace and security, and resolved to take urgent action to prevent and combat it in all its forms and manifestations.
In regard to terrorism and disarmament, the Plan of Action highlighted the need to prevent terrorists from acquiring the weapons to carry out attacks. It noted that, while most attacks relied on conventional arms, there was a significant threat that terrorists might acquire weapons of mass destruction (WMD) to carry out violence with catastrophic results.
To prevent terrorists from acquiring conventional arms, the Secretary-General urged Member States to undertake additional efforts to fill the gaps in controls over these weapons, including through accession to the Protocol against the Illicit Manufacturing of and Trafficking in Firearms, Their Parts and Components and Ammunition, and through measures to implement the Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects (PoA). He also urged Member States to support international, regional and national efforts to control the spread of man-portable air defence systems (MANPADS), in light of their use by terrorists.
In order to counter the threat of terrorism involving WMD, the Secretary-General asserted that the common goal of the international community should be to secure, and wherever possible, eliminate nuclear, biological, chemical and radiological weapons, and implement effective export controls over dual-use materials exploitable in their development. Along these lines, the need for Member States to fully implement United Nations Security Council resolution (UNSCR) 1540 (2004) was underlined, and States were also urged to carry out the steps outlined in General Assembly resolution 60/786 on measures to prevent terrorists from acquiring WMD and resolution 60/737 on preventing the risk of radiological terrorism.
The Secretary-General paid particular attention to the challenge of biological terrorism due to the rapid developments in the field of biotechnology and the substantial harm that could be caused by its misuse. He, therefore, urged Member States to consider his proposal to bring together various stakeholders in biotechnology8 to aim to ensure that its advances are only used for the public good.
In May, the Chairperson9 of the Counter-Terrorism Committee (CTC),10 reported to the Security Council on the Committee's activities, with an outlined work programme for the three-month period ending 30 June 2006. In accord with the conclusions contained in the "Report of the Counter-Terrorism Committee to the Security Council for its consideration as part of its comprehensive review of the Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate" (CTED)11 in December 2005,12 the Committee decided to focus its work for the first part of 2006 on how to address the following three areas: revision of the reporting regime; enhancing dialogue with Member States in need of technical assistance; and deepening its relations with international, regional and subregional organizations.
The Chairperson noted "reporting fatigue" as a concern of many Member States and reported that the Committee, in cooperation with the 1540 and 1267 Committees, would continue to discuss ways to enhance cooperation.
On 15 September, the CTC Chair submitted a report13 to the Council on the implementation of UNSCR 1624.14 It outlined the steps taken by States to implement a number of the resolution's provisions, including: prohibiting and preventing the incitement to terrorism; denying safe havens to terrorist; strengthening the security of international borders; promoting dialogue and understanding among civilizations; and complying with obligations under international law, particularly human rights, refugee and humanitarian law. The report also noted that, as of 7 September, 69 States submitted reports to the CTC.
In consideration of United Nations efforts to address the threat of terrorism, the Council issued a presidential statement on 20 December reaffirming the importance of the efforts being carried out under the auspices of Security Council resolutions addressing the issue of terrorism in all its aspects, including the work of the CTC, the 1540 and the 1267 Committees.15 The statement noted with appreciation the enhanced cooperation between these Committees and encouraged them to present a consolidated message on fighting terrorism, avoid duplication and strengthen information sharing, particularly with regard to implementation by States.
The issue of terrorism was also discussed during the First Committee, especially the concern of terrorists acquiring WMD. As in prior years, the First Committee considered a report by the Secretary-General on "Measures to prevent terrorists from acquiring weapons of mass destruction",16 which elucidated the views of Member States and relayed information from international organizations submitted in accordance with General Assembly resolution 60/78.17 In response, the Assembly adopted resolution 61/86. (See General Assembly section below.)
For its part, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)18 continued to address the threat through its Action Plan to combat nuclear terrorism. This Plan seeks to build the capacity of Member States to effectively respond to incidents of nuclear or radiological terrorist attacks. (For a full description, see chapter I on the IAEA.)

General Assembly, 2006

Measures to prevent terrorists from acquiring weapons of mass destruction. On 12 October the draft resolution, first adopted in 2002, was introduced by India, on behalf of the sponsors (see p. 1 for sponsors). It was adopted without a vote in the First Committee on 23 October and in the General Assembly on 6 December. For the text of the resolution, see page 2.
The resolution called upon all Member States to support international efforts and urged them to strengthen national measures to prevent terrorists from acquiring WMD and their means of delivery; it appealed to all Member States to consider signing and ratifying the International Convention for the Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism19 to bring its early entry into force; it requested the Secretary-General to compile a report on measures already taken by international organizations on issues relating to the linkage between the fight against terrorism and the proliferation of WMD, to seek the views of Member States on additional relevant measures for tackling the global threat posed by terrorists acquiring WMD and to report to the General Assembly at its sixty-second session.
First Committee
While joining consensus, Pakistan believed that the language of the draft resolution could have been improved to convey a more objective reflection of reality and that a comprehensive strategy must be evolved to prevent terrorists from gaining access to WMDs, one that would include depriving terrorist organizations of operational and organizational capabilities, strengthening the existing multilateral regimes, negotiating a universal treaty to fill the gaps in current international instruments, augmenting States' capacity to implement global treaty obligations and addressing the root causes of terrorism.

Outer space

Conference on Disarmament, 2006

The Conference on Disarmament (CD) held a number of formal and informal plenary meetings on the prevention of an arms race in outer space (PAROS).20 At a more profound level of debate, specific related sub-items were discussed by legal and technical experts on space security issues from ministries of various countries. Discussed were the importance of the issue, the scope and basic definitions of a future legal instrument, as well as transparency and confidence-building measures (TCBMs) in outer space.
In addition, in cooperation with United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research (UNIDIR), on 13 June the President organized an open-ended meeting of the CD on PAROS to address ways to assure the safety of outer space assets.
While China and the Russian Federation continued to advocate for a legally binding instrument, the United States maintained its position that "there is no problem in outer space for arms control to solve".21 A large number of countries that continued to press for safeguarding space saw it as mankind's common heritage that must be preserved for peaceful applications only.

PAROS: significance, scope and basic definitions

In general, States regarded as legitimate the military use of outer space for surveillance, communications and global positioning. Most countries, however, sought to prevent the placement of weapons and weapon systems there.
Many delegations, emphasizing the increased dependency of countries on space assets and technology, maintained the position that outer space should be used for peaceful purposes and for such military activities that contribute to confidence-building and verification measures. China, in particular, was of the view that conditions were ripe for negotiating a legal instrument, and asserted that the CD proceed to work substantively on the issue. In this connection, both China and Russia recalled their joint document on "Possible Elements for a Future International Legal Agreement on the Prevention of the Deployment of Weapons in Outer Space, the Threat or Use of Force Against Outer Space Objects".22
The Group of 21 (G-21)23 expressed its common concern that developments in space could have a negative impact on the disarmament regime. It was particularly apprehensive about the implications of the development and deployment of anti-ballistic-missile defence systems and the pursuit of advanced military technologies to be deployed in outer space.
The United States and the United Kingdom, however, saw no need to negotiate a new legally-binding instrument, maintaining that the existing legal framework was sufficient. Moreover, the United States stressed that it had no plans to place weapons in space. Nonetheless, many delegations contended that this did not absolve the international community from preventing the weaponization of outer space before its occurrence. Furthermore, they argued that the existing framework of treaties and organizations regulating the use of outer space were not adequate to accomplish this task and that additional arrangements were needed.
In this regard, a number of States, including Cuba, Italy, Sri Lanka and Sweden,24 recalled the recommendations of the Weapons of Mass Destruction Commission.25 Specific reference was made to recommendation 46, which called for a review conference of the Outer Space Treaty26 to be held in 2007 to mark its fortieth year in force and to address the need to strengthen and extend its scope. A special coordinator should be appointed to promote universal adherence and liaise with non-parties about the reinforcement of the Treaty-based space security regime.
Several ideas were put forward on how to advance the work of the Conference on PAROS. One idea suggested that there be greater cooperation between the various United Nations bodies dealing with outer space, such as the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPUOS), the International Telecommunications Union (ITU), the CD and the General Assembly - particularly its First and Fourth (Special Political and Decolonization) Committees. In this regard, the United Nations Inter-Agency Meeting on Outer Space Activities was considered a useful coordination forum.27 Additionally, the implementation of TCBMs was proposed as an interim measure to serve as a starting point for negotiating an international legal instrument on PAROS.

Transparency and Confidence-Building Measures

The working paper entitled "Transparency and Confidence-Building Measures in Outer-Space Activities and the Prevention on Placement of Weapons in Outer Space", submitted by China and the Russian Federation on 22 May was the basis for much of the discussions that took place in the CD on that subject.28 These two States regarded the following measures as a starting point for a future treaty on PAROS: the exchange of information on space programmes; demonstrations of technologies and launch sites; notifications of launches and descents from orbit of outer space objects; consultations on research and programmes; and thematic workshops on research and use of outer space. The European Union (EU) noted, however, that the Hague International Code of Conduct Against Ballistic Missile Proliferation (HCOC)29 already includes provisions for annual declarations, pre-launch notifications and other TCBMs, and called for its further universalization. In this regard, Italy indicated that it may be useful for the rotating HCOC Chairman to address the Conference on these issues.

General Assembly, 2006

Prevention of an arms race in outer space. This annual draft resolution, alternately submitted by Sri Lanka and Egypt, was introduced on 12 October by Egypt, on behalf of the sponsors (see p. 3 for sponsors). It called on all States to pursue efforts to reach agreement on re-establishing the Ad Hoc Committee to create a legal regime on PAROS. The revised draft was adopted by the First Committee on 25 October (166-1-2), and on 6 December by the General Assembly (178-1-1). For the text of the resolution and voting pattern, see page 4 and 5.
The resolution invited the Conference on Disarmament to complete the examination and updating of the mandate contained in its decision of 13 February 199230 and to establish an ad hoc committee as early as possible during its 2007 session; it also urged States conducting activities in outer space, as well as States interested in conducting such activities, to keep the Conference on Disarmament informed of the progress of bilateral and multilateral negotiations on the matter, if any, so as to facilitate its work.
First Committee
Speaking before the vote, the United States explained its opposition, stating that there was no arms control problem for the international community to address, by reiterating that no arms race in outer space presently existed nor would there be any future prospect of one.
After the vote, Brazil explained its support, which focused on restoring credibility to the Conference on Disarmament by establishing a substantive work programme with a balanced approach - to include PAROS among the four basic areas of concern.
Transparency and confidence-building measures in outer space activities. On 12 October, the draft resolution was introduced by the Russian Federation, on behalf of the sponsors (see p. 6 for sponsors), with the conviction that, posing no legal limits on the rights to self-defence nor preventing outer space from peaceful engagement, it served the interests of all States. It was adopted by the First Committee on 25 October (167-1-1), and on 6 December by the General Assembly (178-1-1). For the text of the resolution and voting pattern, see pages 7 and 8.
The resolution invited all Member States to submit to the Secretary-General before its sixty-second session, concrete proposals on international outer space transparency and confidence-building measures in the interest of maintaining international peace and security and promoting international cooperation and the prevention of an arms race in outer space. Further elaborating on resolution 60/66, a new operative paragraph 2 requested the Secretary-General to submit to the General Assembly at its sixty-second session a report with an annex containing concrete proposals from Member States on international outer space transparency and confidence-building measures.
First Committee
Before voting in favour of the draft resolution, China held that a new international legal instrument would be the only effective way to address the weaponization of outer space. It stated that the Conference on Disarmament should carry out substantive work towards preventing weaponization of outer space, and that it would be happy to work with all States in achieving that aim. The United States explained that it would vote against the resolution as the multilateral outer space arms control regime in place contained an extensive and comprehensive system that was already adequate to deal with outer space weaponization.

Human rights, human security and disarmament

"Long after hostilities cease, the human consequences continue. People continue to be killed or injured by unexploded or abandoned explosive ordnance. These remnants of war, some of which can remain in place for decades, are a threat to civilians and military personnel alike and impede humanitarian assistance, peacekeeping, post-conflict reconstruction and development."31
Kofi Annan, United Nations Secretary-General
Since the Second World War, the international community has sought to limit or prevent the humanitarian problems associated with armed conflicts through a number of international legal instruments. The urgency for such efforts increased dramatically during the 1990's with a surge in armed conflicts around the world, especially intra-State hostilities. During this time, international initiatives particularly focused on the indiscriminate and lasting effects of anti-personnel landmines32 and small arms and light weapons (SALW).33 More recently, growing attention has been paid to the link between human rights and WMD along with other weapons that have indiscriminate effects and can cause superfluous injuries and suffering.

Fifty-eighth session of the Sub-Commission on the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights

In 2001, the Geneva based Sub-Commission on the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights (the Sub-Commission)34 began to consider the humanitarian challenges resulting from the accumulation and proliferation of WMD and SALW.35 In 2003, by its decision 2003/105,36 the Sub-Commission requested that the Secretary-General transmit a questionnaire to Governments, national human rights institutions and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) soliciting information required for the study by its Special Rapporteur on the issue of preventing human rights violations committed with SALW. An analysis of the responses to this questionnaire was included in the final report of the Special Rapporteur, along with draft principles on the issue.37
In 2006, during its fifty-eighth session, the Sub-Commission considered the final report and subsequently adopted resolution 2006/22 without a vote.38 The resolution urged States to: promulgate laws and policies on SALW compliant with international human rights and humanitarian law; provide training on the use of firearms to armed services and law enforcement personnel consistent with such international laws; and take effective measures to minimize violence carried out by non-State actors. The resolution also endorsed the draft principles provided by the Special Rapporteur, and decided to transmit them to the Human Rights Council to be considered for adoption, and to the Human Rights Committee and other United Nations and regional human rights bodies to assure wide dissemination. The principles were comprised of two types of State obligations: regulations over the use of SALW by Governments and State officials, and measures to prevent human rights abuses by private actors using SALW.
The first set of principles detailed a number of measures to be taken by States to prevent the violation of human rights by Government and State agencies using small arms. The basis for these measures was established by the first principle, which affirmed the obligation of State officials to uphold the right to life, liberty and the security of a person, as guaranteed by the International Bill of Human Rights.39 The recommended measures included: the adoption of rules and regulations on the use of force and small arms by State officials; the punishment of the arbitrary or abusive use of small arms by or on behalf of a State agency as a criminal offence; the establishment and maintenance of detailed procedures for the proper storage and management of small arms and ammunition; the establishment of proper screening procedures and training for law enforcement personnel; the use of alternative means of settlement by Governments and State agencies, including the development of non-lethal incapacitating weapons and self-defence equipment; the prohibition of the use of small arms by State officials except in self-defence or the protection of others; and the establishment of effective investigative procedures to review the use of small arms by State officials resulting in death, ill-treatment or injury.
The second set of principles described a number of recommended measures for States to regulate the acquisition and use of small arms by private actors. These regulations included: the establishment of licensing requirements to authorize the use of small arms for specific purposes; the establishment of marking requirements during the manufacture of small arms; the investigation and prosecution of persons illegally manufacturing, possessing, stockpiling or transferring small arms; the development of effective disarmament, demobilization and reintegration (DDR) programmes in post-conflict situations; and the prohibition of international small arms transfers in violation of international law.

Disarmament and human security

Since the end of the Cold War, the concept of human security has shifted from a focus on state security to one on the security of individuals. International mechanisms to address disarmament and human security have, therefore, increasingly addressed weapons that cause severe and unnecessary damage, and arms that disproportionately affect civilians, in particular women and children. The need to confront the multifaceted impact of the rampant spread of such weapons, especially SALW, has brought together actors from the disarmament, human rights, humanitarian, and health and development communities.
In 2006, UNIDIR continued to work on the relation between disarmament and human security as one of its main research areas.40 Its activities corresponded primarily to SALW, explosive remnants of war (ERW) and DDR efforts. With the objective of disarmament, the Institute's efforts sought both to control the rampant spread of such weapons and to find adequate solutions for the security concerns of local populations.
In this regard, UNIDIR has been conducting research on the following topics: the regulation of illegal brokering activities; European action on SALW and ERW; Integrated Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration Standards (IDDRS), embracing gender issues; a cost-benefit analysis of SALW destruction; the Coordination Action on Small Arms (CASA) mechanism database; and disarmament as humanitarian action. In carrying out many of its projects, UNIDIR has cooperated with a number of other United Nations agencies and organizations, including the Department for Disarmament Affairs (DDA), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS) as well as NGOs such as the Small Arms Survey.

Developments in the field of information technology and security

"In an increasingly interconnected and networked world, it has become critically important to safeguard our vital systems and infrastructures against attack by cybercriminals, while instilling confidence in online transactions in order to promote trade, commerce, banking, telemedicine, e-government and a host of other e-applications. As this depends on the security practices of each and every networked country, business and citizen, we need to develop a global culture of cybersecurity."41
Kofi Annan, United Nations Secretary-General
In 2002, the General Assembly endorsed the convening of the World Summit on the Information Society (the Summit) to consider and explore possible cooperative measures to address existing and potential threats to information security.42 The Summit was held in two phases, initially in Geneva (2003) and later in Tunis (2005). In 2006, the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) decided that the Commission on Science and Technology for Development (CSTD) will assist the Council as the focal point in the system-wide follow-up of the Summit.43 ECOSOC further decided that CSTD would be responsible for: reviewing and assessing the status of implementation at the international and regional levels of the recommendations contained in the Summit's outcome documents; sharing best practices and lessons learned for further implementation of Summit outcomes; and promoting dialogue and fostering partnerships to contribute to Summit objectives.
Following the recommendation of the 2005 Tunis Agenda for the Information Society,44 on 27 March 2006, the General Assembly declared 17 May as the World Information Society Day.45 To coincide with the commemoration of this event, the ITU released the results of a worldwide public survey which assessed users' trust of online transactions and awareness of cybersecurity measures.46 These results were intended to assist decision makers in reviewing national and corporate cybersecurity strategies and priorities.

General Assembly, 2006

Developments in the field of information and telecommunications in the context of international security. The draft resolution was introduced by the Russian Federation, on behalf of the sponsors (see p. 9 for sponsors), on 20 October. It was adopted by the First Committee on 25 October (169-1-0), and on 6 December by the General Assembly (176-1-0). For the text of the resolution and voting pattern, see pages 10 and 11.
As far back as 1998,47 Russia has put forward a draft resolution on international information security. This year the General Assembly invited all Member States to continue to inform the Secretary-General of their views and assessments on the following questions: (a) general appreciation of the issues of information security; (b) efforts taken at the national level to strengthen information security and promote international cooperation in this field; (c) the content of relevant international concepts aimed at strengthening the security of global information and telecommunications systems; and (d) possible measures that could be taken by the international community to strengthen information security at the global level.
First Committee
After voting in favour of the draft resolution, Venezuela pointed out that international peace and security could be negatively impacted not only by the actions of non-State groups and actors, but also by State aggression against information or telecommunications systems of other countries. Venezuela stressed the need to prevent developments in this field from being used for purposes counter to the maintenance of international peace and security.
Role of science and technology in the context of international security and disarmament. The draft resolution was introduced by India, on behalf of the sponsors (see p. 12 for sponsors), on 20 October. It was adopted by the First Committee on 25 October (107-52-13), and on 6 December by the General Assembly (108-54-16). For the text of the resolution and voting pattern, see pages 13 and 14.
First introduced in 1989, the resolution again urged Member States to undertake multilateral negotiations with the participation of all interested States in order to establish universally acceptable, non-discriminatory guidelines for international transfers of dual-use goods and technologies and high technology with military applications, and encouraged United Nations bodies to contribute, within existing mandates, to promoting the application of science and technology for peaceful purposes.
First Committee
After abstaining from the vote, Brazil explained that it could not endorse preambular paragraph 6, which stated that ad hoc export control regimes and arrangements for dual-use goods and technologies tended to impede the economic and social development of developing countries, when on the contrary, export control standards were an indispensable means to curb proliferation threats and were increasingly adhered to by States that did not participate in non-proliferation regimes.

Relationship between disarmament and development

The question of the relationship between disarmament and development remained controversial. While the majority of non-aligned Member States continued to call for the implementation of the action programme of the 1987 International Conference on the Relationship between Disarmament and Development, a number of other States, especially in the EU and the United States, stressed that there was no automatic link between the two concepts.
Pursuant to General Assembly resolution 60/61, the Secretary-General submitted a report on the relationship between disarmament and development.48 The report summarized activities conducted over the past year by partner departments and agencies of the Steering Group on Disarmament and Development. In particular, it highlighted that IDDRS intended to foster a comprehensive and holistic approach to DDR, which may be effectively integrated into the work of those United Nations bodies.49 The rationale for the integration stemmed from the recognition that DDR programmes overlapped with peacebuilding, security-sector reform and socio-economic rehabilitation.

General Assembly, 2006

Relationship between disarmament and development. The draft resolution was introduced on 20 October by Indonesia on behalf of the States Members of the United Nations that are members of the Non-Aligned Movement. It was adopted by the First Committee on 25 October (169-1-2), and on 6 December by the General Assembly (178-1-2). For the text of the resolution and voting pattern, see pages 15 and 16.
The resolution requested the Secretary-General to continue to take action to implement the action programme of the 1987 International Conference;50 urged the international community to devote part of its resources from the implementation of disarmament and arms limitation agreements to economic and social development, and encouraged them to make reference to the contribution that disarmament could provide in meeting the Millennium Goals at their review in 2006, as well as to make greater efforts to integrate disarmament with humanitarian and development activities; and also encouraged the relevant regional and subregional organizations and institutions, non-governmental organizations and research institutes to incorporate disarmament and development issues into their agendas and to take into account the report of the group of governmental experts.51
First Committee
Before casting a favourable vote, Cuba explained that the draft resolution was relevant to all Members States of the United Nations. The text of the resolution was stressed at the Havana Summit in 2006, and numerous States had taken specific measures to comply with provisions of past resolutions pertaining to the issue.
After the vote, the United Kingdom elaborated that it abstained because the draft resolution failed to explain the complex relationship between disarmament and development, but instead assumed an automatic link between the two. Additionally, the Group of Governmental Experts (GGE) report neglected to give sufficient credit to unilateral, bilateral and multilateral actions in disarmament and non-proliferation. The United States which voted against the resolution stressed its belief that disarmament and development were two distinct issues with no link to one another.

Gender and disarmament

Gender issues have become increasingly important in the disarmament and security debate. In 1996, the General Assembly endorsed the "Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action" produced by the 1995 Fourth World Conference on Women. In 2000, the Security Council adopted a resolution on women and peace and security.52 These actions provided an important framework for gender concerns in the work of the United Nations, including disarmament.
An important analytical tool for bringing gender concerns into the disarmament process is that of "gender mainstreaming", which can help generate an understanding of how differently men and women view weapons-related issues and power relationships. In December 2006, the United Nations adopted the IDDRS, which, for the first time, called for the recognition and full participation of females associated with fighting forces in all stages of a DDR process - demonstrating awareness of and sensitivity to women, and paving the way for more inclusion at the country and regional levels. Gender issues were dealt with throughout the document and an entire chapter on women, gender and DDR was included.
Also during the year, the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM), the Department for Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO) as well as DDA and its three regional centres contributed to a number of activities related to gender and disarmament.
As part of its continued advocacy effort for full implementation of UNSCR 1325, UNIFEM assisted the United Nations Coordinating Action on Small Arms (CASA) mechanism in finalizing "Guidelines for gender mainstreaming for the effective implementation of the UN programme of action to prevent, combat and eradicate the illicit trade in small arms and light weapons in all its aspects".53 (See chapter III of this volume for detailed information on CASA and the PoA Review Conference.) In addition, UNIFEM developed a DDR questionnaire in collaboration with the Government of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the United Nations peacekeeping mission in the DRC (MONUC). The questionnaire gathered information on the status, living conditions and needs of women and girls associated with fighting forces in order to develop guidelines on how to identify female ex-combatants and dependants associated with armed groups and facilitate their participation in the reintegration processes. The survey was developed and tested in Orientation Centers operational in Kinshasa, Equateur, Oriental, Bas Congo, South Kivu and Maniema Provinces.
Over the past year, gender units have supported the implementation of gender-sensitive DDR programmes in peacekeeping missions. Specific activities included the completion of the Gender Unit of the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti's (MINUSTAH) study on women and girls affected by armed conflict, which recommended the creation of a programme to facilitate the reintegration of female ex-combatants into society. In Burundi, the United Nations Operation in Burundi's (BINUB) Gender Unit assisted the Burundian National Police (PNB) in developing the capacity to deal with sexual and gender-based violence. In addition, a Unit in the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) worked with community-based organizations to allow them to provide testimony to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.
For its part, DDA continued to integrate a gender perspective into disarmament-related activities, with a focus on increasing gender balance to facilitate disarmament and non-proliferation. It encouraged more women to participate in the disarmament debate in various forums and made efforts to involve them in disarmament bodies, such as the Advisory Board on Disarmament Matters and various groups of governmental experts. In order to achieve a gender-balance within the United Nations Disarmament Fellowship, qualified candidates were consciously short-listed on the basis of gender. In 2006, with an increase in female candidates nominated for the programme, a greater number of fellowships were granted to them. "Accordingly, during the 2005-2006 biennium, 24 women were granted fellowships, as compared to 19 and 13 during the 2003-2004 and 2001-2002 bienniums, respectively." DDA continued to participate in the Gender and Mine Action task force created by the DPKO/United Nations Mine Action Service (DPKO/MAS)-led Inter-Agency Coordination Group on Mine Action. It also continued to actively contribute to the work of the Task Force led by the Office of the Special Adviser to the Secretary-General on Gender Issues (OSAGI)54 and Advancement of Women, Peace and Security. In this regard, it provided the Task Force with proposals for concrete performance indicators to measure progress, by department, in implementing UNSCR 1325, which could be used in the 2008 to 2009 Action Plan.
The Regional Centre for Peace and Disarmament in Africa (UNREC) began collaborating with a number of Togolese female chief executive officers (CEOs) on disarmament and conflict resolution activities, particularly in the area of SALW-control initiatives. The Centre familiarized the women's group with UNSCR 1325, prepared a project proposal entitled "Implementing UN Security Council Resolution 1325 in Africa" and made preparations to carry out the project in 2007 with the assistance of UNDP, the African Union (AU) and a non-governmental organization, Safer Africa.
The Regional Centre for Peace, Disarmament and Development in Latin America and the Caribbean (UN-LiREC) taught investigative techniques to over 42 female members of the law enforcement community.55 In addition, the Centre trained parliamentarians and their advisors on incorporating gender-related issues into the drafting of national firearms legislation.
The Regional Centre for Peace and Disarmament in Asia and the Pacific (RCPD) organized a workshop on SALW in Bangkok, where participants discussed the implementation of UNSCR 1325 (2000) and the promotion of gender equity in conflict resolution and peace processes. The speakers urged States to increase the involvement of women in the development and implementation of SALW control policies, violence prevention strategies and disarmament initiatives.

Multilateralism and disarmament

Given the many challenges confronted in the field of disarmament and non-proliferation, including the threat of terrorists acquiring WMD, the United Nations continued to stress the need to reaffirm and strengthen the multilateral disarmament framework. In his 2006 report on the work of the Organization, the Secretary-General highlighted the need to break the deadlock in multilateral negotiations and bring disarmament back as a priority in the international agenda.56
The views of the Member States on this issue were reflected in the Secretary-General's report entitled "Promotion of multilateralism in the area of disarmament and non-proliferation".57 Bolivia, Chile, China, Japan, Jordan, Lebanon and Panama submitted their views supporting multilateralism in this area. China underscored the need for multilateral cooperation to address the many new challenges facing international security, such as non-traditional security threats and setbacks on nuclear issues.
Japan outlined five factors for effective multilateral disarmament machinery functioning: rule-making; implementation of the rules by each party; verification of compliance with the rules; remedy against non-compliance with the rules; and expansion of participants with the rules. In addition to multilateral initiatives in this area, Jordan highlighted regional efforts to promote the establishment of a zone free of WMD in the Middle East.
During the First Committee, many Member States reiterated their calls for renewed commitment to the multilateral disarmament approach. These calls led to the adoption, for the fifth consecutive year, of a resolution on the promotion of multilateralism in the area of disarmament and non-proliferation.

General Assembly, 2006

Promotion of multilateralism in the area of disarmament and non-proliferation. On 20 October the draft resolution was introduced by Indonesia on behalf of the States Members of the United Nations that are members of the Non-Aligned Movement. It was adopted by the First Committee on 25 October (117-4-50), and on 6 December by the General Assembly (120-7-51). For the text of the resolution and voting pattern, see pages 16 and 17.
The resolution reaffirmed multilateralism as the core principle in disarmament and non-proliferation negotiations and once again called upon all Member States to renew and fulfil their individual and collective commitments to multilateral cooperation as an important means of pursuing and achieving their common disarmament and non-proliferation objectives. It also requested the Secretary-General to seek the views of Member States on the issue and to submit a report thereon to the General Assembly at its sixty-second session.
First Committee
Speaking before the vote, Cuba said it would vote in favour as the draft resolution addressed issues of interest to all Member States and appealed to all countries to comply with its provisions so that their views would be duly reflected in the corresponding reports of the Secretary-General.
After the vote, New Zealand, speaking on behalf of Canada, Australia and itself, explained their abstentions. They did not agree with operative paragraph 1, which implied that multilateralism constituted the sole means to pursue negotiation on disarmament and non-proliferation, and felt that alternative approaches, such as bilateral and regional measures, also contributed to disarmament and peacebuilding efforts.

Arms limitation, disarmament agreements and verification

The issue of verification has been a key concern in global arms control and disarmament negotiations since the Second World War. In 2004, the General Assembly requested that the Secretary-General establish a Panel of Governmental Experts on Verification in All Its Aspects, Including the Role of the United Nations in Verification, and transmit a report to the General Assembly during its sixty-first session.58 The 16-member Panel held three sessions during the year: in New York from 30 January to 3 February, in Geneva from 8 to 12 May, and in New York again from 7 to 11 August.59
The Panel considered the issue of verification as it applied to nuclear, radiological, chemical and biological weapons along with their means of delivery, as well as conventional weapons. The GGE also examined verification as it applied to activities involving both States and non-State actors. Specific themes which emerged during the Panel's discussions included: the concept of verification; verification experiences; techniques and methodologies of verification; the need to build complementary synergies between bodies with monitoring and verification responsibilities; capacity-building; the role of the United Nations; and the contribution civil society can provide to monitoring.
In order for the GGE to consider the related concerns of all Member States, the Secretary-General invited all States to submit their views on the subject of verification to the Panel.60 They also heard experts from a number of relevant intergovernmental organizations, such as: the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive-Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization, the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, IAEA, as well as from CTED, UNIDIR, the United Nations Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission, DDA, the 1540 Committee and the Group of Experts supporting the Security Council Committee monitoring the DRC Arms Embargo.61 In addition, several experts from non-governmental organizations provided presentations. Finally, to further stimulate discussion, the Chair asked Panel members to submit their own short papers on selected aspects of verification.
On 16 October, the GGE Chairman, John Barrett (Canada), addressed the First Committee on the Panel's work and discussions. He indicated that the final product of the Panel would be a short, action-oriented, consensus report, which would include some recommendations for consideration by Member States. He added that, rather than tell the States what they should or should not do with regard to verification, the report would attempt to develop a basis for a broader consensus on the role of verification in enhancing security for all. Regarding the adoption of the report, the chair indicated that as the Panel had run out of time during its final meeting it was unable to submit its report to the Assembly during the sixty-first session. On 25 October, the First Committee adopted decision 61/514, which encouraged the Panel to bring its work to an agreed conclusion as soon as possible and to place the issue, including the role of the United Nations in the field of verification, on the provisional agenda of the sixty-second session.62

General Assembly, 2006

Observance of environmental norms in the drafting and implementation of agreements on disarmament and arms control. On 20 October, the draft resolution was introduced by Indonesia on behalf of the States Members of the United Nations that are members of the Non-Aligned Movement. It was adopted by the First Committee on 25 October (168-1-3), and on 6 December by the General Assembly (175-1-4). For the text of the resolution and voting pattern, see pages 18 and 19.
The resolution called upon States to adopt unilateral, bilateral, regional and multilateral measures so as to contribute to ensuring the application of scientific and technological progress within the framework of international security, disarmament and other related spheres, without detriment to the environment or to its effective contribution to attaining sustainable development. It also invited all Member States to communicate to the Secretary-General the measures they had adopted, and requested the Secretary-General to submit a report containing this information to the Assembly's sixty-second session.
First Committee
Before the vote, Cuba said it favoured the draft resolution because it covered issues relevant to all Member States, and then appealed to any country, which had not yet done so, to comply with the specific measures set out in the provisions.
Verification in all its aspects, including the role of the United Nations in the field of verification. The draft decision was introduced by Canada, on behalf of the sponsors on 20 October. It was adopted without a vote in the First Committee on 25 October and in the General Assembly on 6 December. For the text of the resolution, see page 20.
The resolution welcomed the update by the Chair of the Panel of Governmental Experts, provided to the First Committee on 16 October 2006. It encouraged the Panel to bring its work to an agreed conclusion as soon as possible and decided to include the item in the provisional agenda of its sixty-second session.
First Committee
Though joining consensus on the draft decision, Iran and Pakistan observed that the composition of the Panel of Experts had limited geographical representation and felt that the views of all Member States might not be reflected in the report. Furthermore, Iran found it unclear as to how the Panel could reach consensus without additional meetings to discuss the complex issues related to verification in all its aspects. Pakistan was not convinced that another panel could make a significant contribution to the philosophy of verification - whose concept and practice was integral to arms limitation and disarmament agreements - and could not be promoted independently. Egypt supported the consensus but stated that the GGE should be given the chance to complete its work and produce consensus results as soon as possible.


It has been widely recognized that the challenges posed by the spread and accumulation of conventional and unconventional arms are multi-faceted. They also impact a number of other international concerns, from the threat of terrorism, to the preservation of human rights, to ensuring the peaceful uses of both outer space and cyberspace. The complexities of disarmament and non-proliferation issues have prompted a variety of approaches to address them, including recognition of gender issues in the process of disarmament and the incorporation of verification in arms limitation and disarmament agreements.
Since 11 September 2001, the possibility that terrorists will acquire and use WMD has been recognized as an acute threat to international peace and security. During the year, a number of initiatives were pursued within the United Nations context to respond to this threat. As a result, the United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy, a unique global instrument to enhance national, regional and international efforts to counter terrorism was adopted.63 This issue will continue to be a high priority for the international community in the coming years.
Since 2001, a majority of Member States have once again reaffirmed the importance of multilateralism in international disarmament and non-proliferation efforts. Additionally, many States also placed emphasis on the role of regional and national efforts in the field.
Numerous Member States continued to express concern about a potential arms race in outer space. Although various discussions were held on different aspects of the issue, the continued divergence of State perspectives prevented the CD from conducting substantive work on PAROS.
A third Panel of Governmental Experts on Verification met throughout 2006 to consider issues on verification in the field of disarmament and arms control, including the United Nations role. The Panel was unable to agree on a report in the time allotted, but decided to continue its efforts to pursue accord through electronic means. The General Assembly encouraged the Panel to reach an agreement as soon as possible, and to submit a report to its next session.
The connection between the proliferation, manufacture and stockpiling of weapons and a number of other issues, including human security, human rights, gender considerations and development continued to be explored and addressed. The Sub-Commission on the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights considered the final report of its Special Rapporteur on the prevention of SALW-related human rights violations, and promoted potential steps for States to take in addressing those abuses. UNIDIR further pursued research projects on the link between disarmament and human security. Work was also carried out by UNIFEM, DPKO and DDA on mainstreaming a gender perspective within the security and disarmament debate. Efforts to address gender and disarmament issues applied both at the policy level as well as on practical disarmament measures in the field.
While most Member States expressed interest in addressing the relationship between disarmament and development, some States continued to view them as two distinct issues to be considered separately. In spite of such disagreements in multilateral deliberative forums, a number of United Nations departments, agencies, programmes and funds, working within the framework of the IDDRS, sought to address disarmament-related issues as part of their efforts to reduce violence and promote development.
Finally, the international community continued in 2006 to address the potential impact of rapid advances in information technology on international and national security. In this regard, the Secretary-General was requested to establish, in 2009, a second group of governmental experts to study threats in the field of information security and measures to address them.

1Secretary-General's statement to the General Assembly on his report entitled "Uniting against Terrorism: Recommendations for a Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy", 2 May 2006, available at http://www.un.org/unitingagainstterrorism/sgstatement.html.
2See the note by the Secretary-General of 2 December 2004, A/59/565. This and all subsequent United Nations documents are available at http://ods.un.org.
3See the report of the Secretary General entitled "Uniting against terrorism: recommendations for a global counter-terrorism strategy", 27 April 2006, A/60/825.
4Secretary-General's keynote address to the Closing Plenary of the International Summit on Democracy, Terrorism and Security - "A Global Strategy for Fighting Terrorism", 10 March 2005, available at http://www.un.org/apps/sg/sgstats.asp.
5See "The United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy", 20 September 2006, A/RES/60/288.
6"Measures to prevent terrorists from acquiring weapons of mass destruction", 11 January, 2006, A/RES/60/78.
7"Preventing the risk of radiological terrorism", 11 January, 2006, A/RES/60/73.
8Stakeholders would include Governments, industry, science, public health, security and the general public into a programme.
9Ellen Margrethe Løj (Denmark) served as the Chair of the CTC for 2005 and 2006.
10The CTC was established pursuant to UNSCR 1373 (2001) and requires all States to implement domestic measures to, inter alia, prevent the financing of, and all other forms of support for, terrorists and terrorist acts. See S/RES/1373 (2001). See also http://www.un.org/sc/ctc.
11The Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate was established pursuant to UNSCR 1535 (2004) in order to enhance the Committee's ability to monitor the implementation of resolution 1373 (2001) and effectively continue the capacity-building work in which it is engaged. See S/RES/1535 (2004).
12See the letter dated 15 December 2005 from the Chairman of the Security Council Committee established pursuant to resolution 1373 (2001) concerning counter-terrorism addressed to the President of the Security Council, S/2005/800.
13See the letter dated 14 September 2006 from the Chairman of the Security Council Committee established pursuant to resolution 1373 (2001) concerning counter-terrorism addressed to the President of the Security Council, S/2006/737.
14See S/RES/1624 (2005), adopted by the Security Council at its 5261st meeting, on 14 September 2005.
15See the statement by the President of the Security Council of 20 December 2006, S/PRST/2006/56.
16See the report of the Secretary-General on measures to prevent terrorists from acquiring weapons of mass destruction, 21 July 2006, A/61/171 and Add.1.
17Op. cit., footnote 6.
18See www.iaea.org (accessed 6 June).
19Resolution 59/290, annex.
20See CD/PV.1024-CD/PV.1027. These and other record of meetings are available at http://www.unog.ch.
21See CD/PV.1025.
22See CD/1679, available at http://www.geneva.mid.ru/disarm/doc/CD1679-ENGLISH.pdf.
23Algeria, Bangladesh, Brazil, Cameroon, Chile, Colombia, Cuba, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ecuador, Egypt, Ethiopia, India, Indonesia, Iran (Islamic Republic of), Iraq, Kenya, Malaysia, Mexico, Mongolia, Morocco, Myanmar, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Senegal, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Syrian Arab Republic, Tunisia, Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of), Viet Nam and Zimbabwe.
24See CD/PV.1024 and CD/PV.1025.
25The recommendations of the WMD Commission related to weapons in outer space are contained in recommendations 43, 45 and 46 of A/60/934, 10 July 2006.
26Treaty available at http://disarmament.un.org/TreatyStatus.nsf.
27See http://www.uncosa.unvienna.org/uncosa.
28See CD/1778.
29The Hague Code of Conduct was adopted at an international conference held on 25-26 November 2002. States parties are expected to exercise maximum restraint in the development, testing and deployment of ballistic missiles and to engage in transparency measures, such as pre-launch notifications. The HCOC was endorsed by the General Assembly with the adoption of "The Hague Code of Conduct against Ballistic Missile Proliferation" on 3 December 2004, A/RES/59/91.
30See CD/1125.
31Secretary-General's message to the State Parties to the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons to mark the entry into force of Protocol V on Explosive Remnants of War, 13 November 2006, available at http://www.un.org/apps/sg/sgstats.asp?nid=2301.
32See Mine Ban Convention of 1997, Amended Protocol II of CCW; see also chapter III and http://disarmament.un.org/rdb/apm-mbc.html.
33See "Report of the United Nations Conference on the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects", A/CONF.192/15; see also chapter IV of this volume, and http://disarmament.un.org/cab/smallarms/index.html.
34The United Nations Commission on Human Rights established the Sub-Commission's predecessor, the Sub-Commission on Prevention of Discrimination and Protection of Minorities, in 1947. The Sub-Commission meets annually and is composed of 26 experts who serve in their personal capacities. See http://www.unhchr.ch/html/menu2/2/sc.htm (accessed 6 June).
35See The United Nations Disarmament Yearbook, Volume 26, 2001, pp. 172-176 (United Nations publication Sales No. E.02.IX.1).
36See The United Nations Disarmament Yearbook, Volume 28, 2003, p. 233 (United Nations publication Sales No. E.IX.03.1). See also http://www.ohchr.org/english/bodies/subcom/index.htm.
37A/HRC/Sub.1/58/27 and Add.1, "Prevention of human rights violations committed with small arms and light weapons. The final report was submitted by Barbara Frey, Special Rapporteur, in accordance with Sub-Commission resolution 2002/25".
38See A/HRC/2/2; A/HRC/Sub.1/58/36, "Report of the Sub-Commission on the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights on its Fifty-Eighth Session", 11 September 2006.
39The Bill consists of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and its two Optional Protocols. See http://www.ohchr.org/english/about/publications/docs/fs2.htm (accessed 11 June).
40See www.unidir.ch.
41Message of the Secretary-General to the World Information Society Day, 17 May 2006. See http://www.itu.int/wisd/2006/index.html.
42See "World Summit on the Information Society", 21 December 2001, A/RES/56/183.
43See the letter dated 13 January 2006 from the Chargé d'affaires a.i. of the Permanent Mission of the United States to the United Nations addressed to the President of the Economic and Social Council, E/2006/46.
44WSIS-05/TUNIS/DOC/6(Rev.1)-E, available at http://www.itu.int/wsis/docs2/tunis/off/6rev1.html (accessed 11 June).
45See "World Summit on the Information Society", 27 March, 2006, A/RES/60/252.
46See http://www.itu.int/wsis.
47See "Developments in the field of information and telecommunications in the context of international security", 4 December 1998, A/RES/53/70.
48See the report of the Secretary-General on the relationship between disarmament and development, 20 June 2006, A/61/98.
49The Department for Disarmament Affairs, Department of Peacekeeping Operations, Department of Political Affairs, Department of Public Information, International Labour Organization, International Organization for Migration, the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS, United Nations Children's Fund, United Nations Development Programme, United Nations Development Fund for Women, United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research, United Nations Population Fund, Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, World Food Programme, World Health Organization.
50United Nations publication, Sales No. E.87.IX.8.
51See the note by the Secretary-General on the relationship between disarmament and development in the current international context", 23 June 2004, A/59/119.
52See S/RES/1325 (2000), adopted by the Security Council at its 4213th meeting, on 31 October 2000.
53A/CONF.192/2006/RC/CRP.3, available at http://www.un.org/events/smallarms2006/documents.html.
54See http://www.un.org/womenwatch/osagi.
55This was done, in the context of seven national firearms techniques courses held in Brazil, Colombia, Paraguay, Peru and Uruguay, through the Regional Public Security Training Centre (TREINASP).
56See report of the Secretary-General on the work of the Organization, A/61/1.
57See the report of the Secretary-General on the promotion of multilateralism in the area of disarmament and non-proliferation, 27 June 2006, A/61/114.
58The two previous panels prepared extensive reports in 1990 and 1995.
59The Panel was comprised of representatives of the following countries: Argentina, Canada, China, France, Germany, Japan, Mexico, Nigeria, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Ukraine, United Kingdom and United States.
60The following States provided their views on the issue of verification: Bolivia, Canada, Chile, Cuba, Finland, Guatemala, Iran, Japan, Lebanon, Mexico, Panama, Portugal, Qatar, Russian Federation, Serbia and Montenegro, Suriname and Sweden.
61See http://www.un.org/sc/committees/1533/index.shtml (accessed 11 June 2007).
62See the report of the First Committee on verification in all its aspects, including the role of the United Nations in the field of verification, 8 November 2006, A/61/388.
63See http://www.un.org/terrorism/strategy-counter-terrorism.html.