United Nations

A/RES/50/27


General Assembly

Distr. GENERAL  

6 December 1995

ORIGINAL:
ENGLISH



                                                   A/RES/50/27
                                                   82nd plenary meeting
                                                   6 December 1995
 
            50/27. International cooperation in the peaceful uses
                   of outer space
 
      The General Assembly,
 
      Recalling its resolution 49/34 of 9 December 1994,
 
      Deeply convinced of the common interest of mankind in promoting the
exploration and use of outer space for peaceful purposes and in continuing
efforts to extend to all States the benefits derived therefrom, and also of
the importance of international cooperation in this field, for which the
United Nations should continue to provide a focal point,
 
      Reaffirming the importance of international cooperation in developing
the rule of law, including the relevant norms of space law and their important
role in international cooperation for the exploration and use of outer space
for peaceful purposes,
 
      Concerned about the possibility of an arms race in outer space,
 
      Recognizing that all States, in particular those with major space
capabilities, should contribute actively to the goal of preventing an arms
race in outer space as an essential condition for the promotion of
international cooperation in the exploration and use of outer space for
peaceful purposes,
 
      Considering that space debris is an issue of concern to all nations,
 
      Noting the progress achieved in the further development of peaceful
space exploration and application as well as in various national and
cooperative space projects, which contribute to international cooperation, and
the importance of further international cooperation in this field,
 
      Taking note of the report of the Secretary-General on the implementation
of the recommendations of the Second United Nations Conference on the
Exploration and Peaceful Uses of Outer Space,
 
      Having considered the report of the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of
Outer Space on the work of its thirty-eighth session,
 
      1.    Endorses the report of the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer
Space;
 
      2.    Invites States that have not yet become parties to the
international treaties governing the uses of outer space to give consideration
to ratifying or acceding to those treaties;
 
      3.    Notes that, at its thirty-fourth session, the Legal Subcommittee
of the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space, in its working groups,
continued its work as mandated by the General Assembly in its resolution
49/34;
 
      4.    Endorses the recommendations of the Committee that the Legal
Subcommittee, at its thirty-fifth session, taking into account the concerns of
all countries, particularly those of developing countries, should:
 
      (a)   Continue its consideration of the question of review and possible
revision of the Principles Relevant to the Use of Nuclear Power Sources in
Outer Space;
 
      (b)   Continue, through its working group, its consideration of matters
relating to the definition and delimitation of outer space and to the
character and utilization of the geostationary orbit, including consideration
of ways and means to ensure the rational and equitable use of the
geostationary orbit without prejudice to the role of the International
Telecommunication Union;
 
      (c)   Continue, through its working group, its consideration of the
legal aspects related to the application of the principle that the exploration
and utilization of outer space should be carried out for the benefit and in
the interests of all States, taking into particular account the needs of
developing countries;
 
      5.    Also endorses the recommendation of the Committee that the Legal
Subcommittee, at its thirty-fifth session, should suspend consideration in its
working group of the Principles Relevant to the Use of Nuclear Power Sources
in Outer Space pending the results of the work in the Scientific and Technical
Subcommittee, without prejudice to the possibility of reconvening its working
group on that item if in the opinion of the Legal Subcommittee sufficient
progress was made in the Scientific and Technical Subcommittee at its session
in 1996 to warrant the reconvening of the working group;
 
      6.    Notes that deliberations on the question of the geostationary
orbit have been undertaken by the Legal Subcommittee as reflected in its
report, on the basis of recent proposals which might provide a new and
enhanced basis for future work;
 
      7.    Endorses the recommendations and agreements concerning the
organization of work in the Legal Subcommittee;
 
      8.    Notes that, in accordance with its recommendation, the Chairman of
the Legal Subcommittee, at its thirty-fourth session, conducted extensive,
open- ended informal consultations with all members of the Subcommittee on the
working methods and agenda of the Legal Subcommittee, including the
consideration of possible additional items for inclusion in the agenda as
outlined in the report of the Committee, and also notes that, in accordance
with the recommendation of the Committee, a Working Group of the Whole was
established at its thirty-eighth session to examine the working methods of the
Committee and its subsidiary bodies, which took particular account of the
results of the informal consultations of the Chairman of the Legal
Subcommittee;
 
      9.    Endorses the recommendations of the Committee as contained in the
report of its thirty-eighth session with regard to its working methods and to
the reconvening of the Working Group of the Whole at the thirty-ninth session
of the Committee;
 
      10.   Notes that, in accordance with the recommendation contained in
General Assembly resolutions 48/222 B of 23 December 1993 and 49/221 B of 23
December 1994, the Committee reviewed its needs for written records;
 
      11.   Endorses the recommendation of the Committee that, beginning with
its thirty-ninth session, the Committee would be provided with unedited
transcripts of its session in lieu of verbatim records, as described in the
report of the Secretariat on this matter;
 
      12.   Requests the Legal Subcommittee to review, at its thirty-fifth
session, its requirement for summary records with a view to determining
whether it may be possible to utilize unedited transcripts at its subsequent
sessions and to consider under what circumstances there might be a need to
revert to summary records should a decision be taken to utilize unedited
transcripts;
 
      13.   Notes that the Scientific and Technical Subcommittee of the
Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space, at its thirty-second session,
continued its work as mandated by the General Assembly in its resolution
49/34;
 
      14.   Welcomes the decision of the Committee to consider the matter of
space debris as a matter of priority on the agenda of the Scientific and
Technical Subcommittee;
 
      15.   Notes that under that item the Scientific and Technical
Subcommittee continued to consider scientific research relating to space
debris, including relevant studies, mathematical modelling and other
analytical work on the characterization of the space debris environment;
 
      16.   Agrees with the endorsement by the Committee of the multi-year
plan for consideration of the agenda item on space debris adopted by the
Scientific and Technical Subcommittee at its thirty-second session, and also
agrees that the work plan should be implemented with flexibility;
 
      17.   Also endorses the recommendations of the Committee that the
Scientific and Technical Subcommittee, at its thirty-third session, taking
into account the concerns of all countries, particularly those of developing
countries, should:
 
      (a)   Consider the following items on a priority basis:
 
      (i)   United Nations Programme on Space Applications and the
            coordination of space activities within the United Nations system;
 
     (ii)   Implementation of the recommendations of the Second United Nations
            Conference on the Exploration and Peaceful Uses of Outer Space;
 
    (iii)   Matters relating to remote sensing of the Earth by satellites,
            including, inter alia, applications for developing countries;
 
     (iv)   Use of nuclear power sources in outer space;
 
      (v)   Space debris;
 
      (b)   Consider the following items:
 
      (i)   Questions relating to space transportation systems and their
            implications for future activities in space;
 
     (ii)   Examination of the physical nature and technical attributes of the
            geostationary orbit and of its utilization and applications,
            including, inter alia, in the field of space communications, as
            well as other questions relating to space communications
            developments, taking particular account of the needs and interests
            of developing countries;
 
    (iii)   Matters relating to life sciences, including space medicine;
 
     (iv)   Progress in national and international space activities related to
            the Earth's environment, in particular progress in the geosphere-
            biosphere (global change) programme;
 
      (v)   Matters relating to planetary exploration;
 
     (vi)   Matters relating to astronomy;
 
    (vii)   The theme fixed for special attention at the 1996 session of the
            Scientific and Technical Subcommittee:  "Utilization of micro- and
            small satellites for the expansion of low-cost space activities,
            taking into account the special needs of developing countries";
            the Committee on Space Research and the International
            Astronautical Federation, in liaison with Member States, should be
            invited to arrange a symposium, with as wide a participation as
            possible, to be held during the first week of the Subcommittee's
            session, to complement discussions within the Subcommittee on the
            special theme;
 
      18.   Considers, in the context of paragraph 17 (a) (ii) above, that it
is particularly urgent to implement the following recommendations:
 
      (a)   All countries should have the opportunity to use the techniques
resulting from medical studies in space;
 
      (b)   Data banks at the national and regional levels should be
strengthened and expanded and an international space information service
should be established to function as a centre of coordination;
 
      (c)   The United Nations should support the creation of adequate
training centres at the regional level, linked, whenever possible, to
institutions implementing space programmes; necessary funding for the
development of such centres should be made available through financial
institutions;
 
      (d)   The United Nations should organize a fellowship programme through
which selected graduates or postgraduates from developing countries should get
in-depth, long-term exposure to space technology or applications; it is also
desirable to encourage the availability of opportunities for such exposure on
other bilateral or multilateral bases outside the United Nations system;
 
      19.   Endorses the recommendation of the Committee that the Scientific
and Technical Subcommittee should reconvene, at its thirty-third session, the
Working Group of the Whole to Evaluate the Implementation of the
Recommendations of the Second United Nations Conference on the Exploration and
Peaceful Uses of Outer Space, to continue its work;
 
      20.   Also endorses the recommendations of the Working Group of the
Whole of the Scientific and Technical Subcommittee, as endorsed by the
Committee and as contained in the report of the Working Group of the Whole;
 
      21.   Decides that, during the thirty-third session of the Scientific
and Technical Subcommittee, the Working Group on the Use of Nuclear Power
Sources in Outer Space should be reconvened, and invites Member States to
report to the Secretary-General on a regular basis with regard to national and
international research concerning the safety of nuclear-powered satellites;
 
      22.   Endorses the United Nations Programme on Space Applications for
1996, as proposed to the Committee by the Expert on Space Applications;
 
      23.   Emphasizes the urgency and importance of implementing fully the
recommendations of the Second United Nations Conference on the Exploration and
Peaceful Uses of Outer Space;
 
      24.   Reaffirms its approval of the recommendation of the Conference
regarding the establishment and strengthening of regional mechanisms of
cooperation and their promotion and creation through the United Nations
system;
 
      25.   Expresses its appreciation to all Governments that have made, or
expressed their intention to make, contributions towards carrying out the
recommendations of the Conference;
 
      26.   Invites all Governments to take effective action for the
implementation of the recommendations of the Conference;
 
      27.   Requests all organs, organizations and bodies of the United
Nations system and other intergovernmental organizations working in the field
of outer space or on space-related matters to cooperate in the implementation
of the recommendations of the Conference;
 
      28.   Invites the Secretary-General to report to the General Assembly at
its fifty-first session on the implementation of the recommendations of the
Conference;
 
      29.   Notes with satisfaction that, in the context of paragraph 18 (c)
above, significant progress has been achieved in establishing regional centres
for space science and technology education in each region covered by the
regional commissions;
 
      30.   Endorses the recommendation of the Committee that these centres be
established on the basis of affiliation to the United Nations as early as
possible and that such affiliation would provide the centres with the
necessary recognition and would strengthen the possibilities of attracting
donors and of establishing academic relationships with national and
international space- related institutions;
 
      31.   Notes that, pursuant to its request in paragraph 27 of resolution
49/34, the Scientific and Technical Subcommittee, at its thirty-second
session, continued its discussions on the possibility of holding a third
United Nations Conference on the Exploration and Peaceful Uses of Outer Space
and that the Committee continued these discussions at its thirty-eighth
session with a view to promoting an early conclusion on the matter by the
Committee;
 
      32.   Agrees that a third United Nations Conference on the Exploration
and Peaceful Uses of Outer Space could be convened before the turn of the
present century, and that, prior to recommending a date for the conference,
there should be a consensus recommendation on the agenda, venue and funding of
the conference;
 
      33.   Recommends that the Scientific and Technical Subcommittee, at its
thirty-third session, continue the work it had conducted at its thirty-second
session, taking into particular account the report of its Working Group of the
Whole, with the aim being to complete the development and refinement of a
framework that would allow an evaluation of proposals by the Committee at its
thirty-ninth session, and that this framework should allow for the
consideration of all possibilities of achieving the final objectives of such a
conference;
 
      34.   Agrees that, on the basis of the work to be conducted at the
thirty- third session of the Scientific and Technical Subcommittee, the
Committee, at its thirty-ninth session, should consider all issues related to
the possible convening of a third United Nations Conference on the Exploration
and Peaceful Uses of Outer Space, including its technical and political
objectives, a detailed and sharply focused agenda, funding, timing and other
organizational aspects as well as whether the objectives of the conference
could be achieved by other means, with a view to making a final recommendation
to the General Assembly at that session of the Committee;
 
      35.   Notes with interest the plans of the Government of Uruguay to host
the Third Space Conference of the Americas at Punta del Este in 1996;
 
      36.   Recommends that more attention be paid to all aspects related to
the protection and the preservation of the outer space environment, especially
those potentially affecting the Earth's environment;
 
      37.   Considers that it is essential that Member States pay more
attention to the problem of collisions of space objects, including nuclear
power sources, with space debris, and other aspects of space debris, calls for
the continuation of national research on this question, for the development of
improved technology for the monitoring of space debris and for the compilation
and dissemination of data on space debris, and also considers that, to the
extent possible, information thereon should be provided to the Scientific and
Technical Subcommittee;
 
      38.   Urges all States, in particular those with major space
capabilities, to contribute actively to the goal of preventing an arms race in
outer space as an essential condition for the promotion of international
cooperation in the exploration and uses of outer space for peaceful purposes;
 
      39.   Emphasizes the need to increase the benefits of space technology
and its applications and to contribute to an orderly growth of space
activities favourable to the socio-economic advancement of humanity, in
particular that of the people of the developing countries;
 
      40.   Takes note of the views expressed during the thirty-eighth session
of the Committee and during the fiftieth session of the General Assembly
concerning ways and means of maintaining outer space for peaceful purposes;
 
      41.   Requests the Committee to continue to consider, as a matter of
priority, ways and means of maintaining outer space for peaceful purposes and
to report thereon to the General Assembly at its fifty-first session;
 
      42.   Also requests the Committee to continue to consider at its thirty-
ninth session its agenda item entitled "Spin-off benefits of space technology:
review of current status";
 
      43.   Requests the specialized agencies and other international
organizations to continue and, where appropriate, enhance their cooperation
with the Committee and to provide it with progress reports on their work
relating to the peaceful uses of outer space;
 
      44.   Requests the Committee to continue its work, in accordance with
the present resolution, to consider, as appropriate, new projects in outer
space activities and to submit a report to the General Assembly at its
fifty-first session, including its views on which subjects should be studied
in the future.