United Nations

A/RES/50/38


General Assembly

Distr. GENERAL  
50th session
12 February 1996


Fiftieth session
Agenda item 18


                  RESOLUTIONS ADOPTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY

     [on the report of the Special Political and Decolonization Committee
                        (Fourth Committee) (A/50/602)]

            50/38.   Questions of American Samoa, Anguilla,
                     Bermuda, the British Virgin Islands, the
                     Cayman Islands, Guam, Montserrat,
                     Pitcairn, St. Helena, Tokelau, the Turks
                     and Caicos Islands and the United States
                     Virgin Islands


                                       A

                                    GENERAL

      The General Assembly,

      Having considered the questions of the Non-Self-Governing
Territories of American Samoa, Anguilla, Bermuda, the British Virgin
Islands, the Cayman Islands, Guam, Montserrat, Pitcairn, St. Helena,
Tokelau, the Turks and Caicos Islands and the United States Virgin
Islands, hereinafter "the Territories",

      Having examined the relevant chapter of the report of the Special
Committee on the Situation with regard to the Implementation of the
Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and
Peoples,  1/

      Recognizing that 1995 is the fiftieth anniversary of the United
Nations and that decolonization is one of the proudest achievements of
the Organization,

      Recalling its resolution 1514 (XV) of 14 December 1960,
containing the Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial
Countries and Peoples, and all resolutions and decisions of the United
Nations relating to those Territories, including, in particular, the
resolutions adopted by the General Assembly at its forty-ninth session
on the individual Territories covered by the present resolution,

      Recognizing that the specific characteristics and the sentiments
of the people of the Territories require flexible, practical and
innovative approaches to the options of self-determination, without
any prejudice to territorial size, geographical location, size of
population or natural resources,

      Recalling its resolution 1541 (XV) of 15 December 1960,
containing the principles that should guide Member States in
determining whether or not an obligation exists to transmit the
information called for under Article 73 e of the Charter of the United
Nations,

      Conscious of the need to ensure the full and speedy
implementation of the Declaration in respect of the Territories, in
view of the target set by the United Nations to eradicate colonialism
by the year 2000,

      Noting with appreciation the continuing exemplary cooperation of
New Zealand, as administering Power, in the work of the Special
Committee, and welcoming its statement that it will abide by the
wishes of the population of Tokelau in determining their future
political status,

      Welcoming the stated position of the Government of the United
Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland that it continues to
take seriously its obligations under the Charter of the United Nations
to develop self-government in the dependent Territories and, in
cooperation with the locally elected Governments, to ensure that their
constitutional frameworks continue to meet the wishes of the people,
and the emphasis that it is ultimately for the peoples of the
Territories to decide their future status,

      Aware of the special circumstances of the geographical location
and economic conditions of each Territory, and bearing in mind the
necessity of promoting economic stability and diversifying and
strengthening further the economies of the respective Territories as a
matter of priority,

      Conscious of the particular vulnerability of the small
Territories to natural disasters and environmental degradation,

      Aware of the usefulness both to the Territories and to the
Special Committee of the participation of appointed and elected
representatives of the Territories in the work of the Special
Committee,

      Expressing its conviction that referendums and other forms of
popular consultation on the future status of the Non-Self-Governing
Territories are an appropriate means of ascertaining the wishes of the
peoples in those Territories with regard to their future political
status,

      Mindful that United Nations visiting missions provide one
effective means of ascertaining the situation in the Territories, and
considering that the possibility of sending further visiting missions
to the Territories at an appropriate time and in consultation with the
administering Powers should be kept under review,

      Mindful also that some Territories have not had any United
Nations visiting mission for a long period of time,

      Noting with appreciation the contribution to the development of
some Territories by specialized agencies and other organizations of
the United Nations system, in particular the United Nations
Development Programme, as well as regional institutions such as the
Caribbean Development Bank,

      1.    Approves the chapter of the report of the Special Committee
on the Situation with regard to the Implementation of the Declaration
on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples
relating to the Non-Self-Governing Territories of American Samoa,
Anguilla, Bermuda, the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands,
Guam, Montserrat, Pitcairn, St. Helena, Tokelau, the Turks and Caicos
Islands and the United States Virgin Islands, hereinafter "the
Territories"; 1/

      2.    Reaffirms the inalienable right of the people of the
Territories to self-determination, including independence, in
conformity with the Charter of the United Nations and General Assembly
resolution 1514 (XV), containing the Declaration on the Granting of
Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples;

      3.    Reaffirms also that it is ultimately for the people of the
Territories themselves to determine freely their future political
status in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Charter, the
Declaration and the relevant resolutions of the General Assembly, and
in that connection calls upon the administering Powers, in cooperation
with the territorial Governments, to facilitate programmes of
political education in the Territories in order to foster an awareness
among the people of the possibilities open to them in the exercise of
their right to self-determination, in conformity with the legitimate
political status options clearly defined in resolution 1541 (XV);

      4.    Requests the administering Powers to ascertain
expeditiously, by means of popular consultations, the wishes and
aspirations of the peoples of Non-Self-Governing Territories regarding
their future political status so that the Special Committee can review
the status of the Territories in accordance with the expressed wishes
of the peoples of the Territories;

      5.    Also requests the administering Powers to facilitate the
dispatch of the United Nations visiting missions to the Non-Self-
Governing Territories regarding their future political status so that
the Special Committee can review the status of the Territories in
accordance with the expressed wishes of the peoples of the Territory;

      6.    Reaffirms the responsibility of the administering Powers
under the Charter to promote the economic and social development and
to preserve the cultural identity of the Territories, and recommends
that priority continue to be given, in consultation with the
territorial Governments concerned, to the strengthening and
diversification of their respective economies;

      7.    Requests the administering Powers to take all necessary
measures to protect and conserve the environment of the Territories
under their administration against any environmental degradation, and
requests the specialized agencies concerned to continue to monitor
environmental conditions in those Territories;

      8.    Calls upon the administering Powers, in cooperation with the
respective territorial Governments, to continue to take all necessary
measures to counter problems related to drug trafficking, money
laundering and other offences;

      9.    Stresses that the achievement of the declared goal of
eradication of colonialism by the year 2000 requires full and
constructive cooperation by all parties concerned, and appeals to the
administering Powers to continue to give their full support to the
Special Committee;

      10.   Urges Member States to contribute to the efforts of the
United Nations to usher in the twenty-first century in a world free of
colonialism, and calls upon them to continue to give their full
support to the Special Committee in its endeavours towards that noble
goal;

      11.   Invites the specialized agencies and other organizations of
the United Nations system to initiate or to continue to take all
necessary measures to accelerate progress in the social and economic
life of the Territories;

      12.   Requests the Special Committee to continue the examination
of the question of the small Territories and to recommend to the
General Assembly the most suitable steps to be taken to enable the
populations of those Territories to exercise their right to self-
determination, and to report thereon to the Assembly at its fifty-
first session.

                                                          82nd plenary meeting
                                                               6 December 1995

                                       B

                            INDIVIDUAL TERRITORIES

                              I.  American Samoa

      The General Assembly,

      Referring to resolution A above,

      Noting the fact that a large number of American Samoans have
emigrated to the United States of America and are residing there,

      Noting also the constitutional developments in the Territory,

      Noting further that the Territory, similar to isolated
communities with limited funds, continues to experience lack of
adequate medical facilities and other infrastructural requirements,

      Recalling the dispatch in 1981 of a United Nations visiting
mission to the Territory,

      1.    Requests the administering Power to carry out, at the
earliest possible date, a democratic exercise to ascertain the wishes
of the people of American Samoa regarding the future status of the
Territory;

      2.    Calls upon the administering Power to continue to assist the
territorial Government in the economic and social development of the
Territory and the development of manpower resources.


                                 II.  Anguilla

      The General Assembly,

      Referring to resolution A above,

      Noting that general elections were held in March 1994,

      Conscious of the commitment of both the Government of Anguilla
and the administering Power to a new and closer policy of dialogue and
partnership through the Country Policy Plan for 1993-1997,

      Aware that the exploitation of deep-sea resources would help
reduce the risk of depleting the Territory's own fishing resources as
a result of overfishing,

      Noting the need for continued cooperation between the
administering Power and the territorial Government in tackling the
problems of drug trafficking and money laundering,

      Recalling the dispatch in 1984 of a United Nations visiting
mission to the Territory,

      1.    Requests the administering Power to carry out, at the
earliest possible date, an exercise to ascertain the wishes of the
people of Anguilla regarding the future status of the Territory;

      2.    Requests all countries, organizations and United Nations
agencies with deep-sea fishing experience to assist the Territory in
improving its capacity in exploiting deep-sea fishing.


                                 III.  Bermuda

      The General Assembly,

      Referring to resolution A above,

      Noting the results of the independence referendum held on
16 August 1995,

      Conscious of the different viewpoints of the political parties of
the Territory on the future status of the Territory,

      Noting the measures taken by the Government to combat racism and
the plan to set up a Commission for Unity and Racial Equality,

      Noting also the closure of the Canadian base in 1994 and the
announced plans of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern
Ireland and the United States of America to close their respective air
and naval bases in Bermuda in 1995,

      Calls upon the administering Power to continue its programmes of
socio-economic development.


                          IV.  British Virgin Islands

      The General Assembly,

      Referring to resolution A above,

      Noting the completion of the constitutional review in the
Territory and the coming into force of the amended Constitution, and
noting also the results of the general elections held on
20 February 1995,

      Noting further the results of the constitutional review of
1993-1994, which made it clear that a prerequisite to independence
must be a constitutionally expressed wish by the people as a result of
a referendum,

      Taking note of the statement by the Chief Minister of the British
Virgin Islands that the Territory was ready for constitutional and
political advancement towards full internal self-government and that
the administering Power should assist through gradual transfer of
power to elected territorial representatives,

      Noting that the Territory is emerging as one of the world's
leading off-shore financial centres,

      Noting also the need for continued cooperation between the
administering Power and the territorial Government in countering drug
trafficking and money laundering,

      1.    Requests the administering Power to continue the process for
facilitating the expression of the will of the people regarding the
future status of the Territory;

      2.    Also requests the administering Power, specialized agencies
and other organizations of the United Nations system and all financial
institutions to continue to provide assistance to the Territory for
socio-economic development and development of human resources, bearing
in mind the vulnerability of the Territory to external factors.


                              V.  Cayman Islands

      The General Assembly,

      Referring to resolution A above,

      Noting the constitutional review of 1992-1993, according to which
the population expressed the sentiment that the existing relations
with the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland should
be maintained and that the current status of the Territory should not
be altered,

      Noting also the actions taken by the territorial Government to
implement its localization programme to promote increased
participation of the local population in the decision-making process
in the Cayman Islands,

      Noting with concern the vulnerability of the Territory to drug
trafficking and related activities, as well as the measures taken by
the authorities to deal with those problems,

      Noting that the Territory has emerged as one of the world's
leading off-shore financial centres,

      Recalling the dispatch in 1977 of a United Nations visiting
mission to the Territory,

      1.    Requests the administering Power to continue to provide the
territorial Government with all required expertise to enable it to
achieve its socio-economic aims;

      2.    Also requests the administering Power, in consultation with
the territorial Government, to continue to facilitate the expansion of
the current programme of securing employment for the local population,
in particular at the decision-making level;

      3.    Requests the specialized agencies and other organizations of
the United Nations system to continue and increase their programmes of
assistance to the Territory with a view to strengthening, developing
and diversifying its economy;

      4.    Calls upon the administering Power and the territorial
Government to continue to cooperate to counter problems related to
money laundering, smuggling of funds and other related crimes, as well
as drug trafficking.


                                   VI.  Guam

      The General Assembly,

      Referring to resolution A above,

      Noting the results of the general elections held in November 1994,

      Recalling that, in a referendum held in 1987, the people of Guam
endorsed a draft Guam Commonwealth Act that would establish a new
framework for relations between the Territory and the administering
Power, providing internal self-government for Guam and recognition of
the right of the people of Guam to self-determination for the
Territory,

      Aware of the continued negotiations between the administering
Power and the territorial Government on the draft Guam Commonwealth
Act and on the future status of the Territory, with particular
emphasis on the question of the evolution of the relationship between
the United States of America and Guam,

      Recalling the statement by the Special Representative of the
United States of America for Guam Commonwealth Issues on
12 December 1993 that the Administration hoped to have comments on the
Commonwealth Bill before Congress by the end of 1994,

      Cognizant that the administering Power continues to implement its
programme of transferring surplus federal land to the Government of
Guam,

      Noting that the people of the Territory have called for reform in
the programme of the administering Power with respect to the thorough
and expeditious transfer of land property to the people of Guam,

      Conscious that immigration into Guam has resulted in the
indigenous Chamorros becoming a minority in their homeland,

      Aware of the potential for diversifying and developing the
economy of Guam through commercial fishing and agriculture and other
viable activities,

      Recalling the dispatch in 1979 of a United Nations visiting
mission to the Territory,

      1.    Calls upon the administering Power and the territorial
Government to expedite the early conclusion of the negotiations on the
draft Guam Commonwealth Act and on the future status of the Territory;

      2.    Requests the administering Power to continue to assist the
elected territorial Government in achieving its political, economic
and social goals;

      3.    Also requests the administering Power, in cooperation with
the territorial Government, to continue the transfer of land to the
people of the Territory and to take the necessary steps to safeguard
their property rights;

      4.    Further requests the administering Power to continue to
recognize and respect the political rights and the cultural and ethnic
identity of the Chamorro people and to take all necessary measures to
respond to the concerns of the territorial Government with regard to
the immigration issue;

      5.    Requests the administering Power to continue to support
appropriate measures by the territorial Government aimed at promoting
growth in commercial fishing and agriculture and other viable
activities.


                               VII.  Montserrat

      The General Assembly,

      Referring to resolution A above,

      Noting the functioning of a democratic process in Montserrat,

      Taking note of the reported statement of the Chief Minister that
his preference was for independence within a political union with the
Organization of Eastern Caribbean States and that self-reliance was
more of a priority than independence,

      Recalling the dispatch in 1982 of a United Nations visiting
mission to the Territory,

      1.    Requests the administering Power to conduct an appropriate
exercise, at the earliest possible date, to ascertain the will of the
people regarding the future status of the Territory;

      2.    Requests the specialized agencies and other organizations of
the United Nations system, as well as regional and other multilateral
financial institutions, to continue their assistance to the Territory
in the strengthening, development and diversification of the economy
of Montserrat in accordance with its medium- and long-term development
plans.


                                VIII.  Pitcairn

      The General Assembly,

      Referring to resolution A above,

      Taking into account the unique nature of the Territory in terms
of population and area,

      Expressing its satisfaction with the continued economic and
social advancement of the Territory, as well as with the improvement
of its communications with the outside world and its management plan
to address conservation issues,

      Requests the administering Power to continue its assistance for
improvement of the economic, social, educational and other conditions
of the population of the Territory.


                                IX.  St. Helena

      The General Assembly,

      Referring to resolution A above,

      Aware of the request by the Legislative Council of St. Helena
that the administering Power conduct a constitutional review in the
Territory,

      Taking into account the unique character of the Territory, its
population and its natural resources,

      Aware of the efforts of the administering Power and the
territorial authorities to improve the socio-economic conditions of
the population of St. Helena, in particular in the sphere of food
production,

      1.    Requests the administering Power to conduct the
constitutional review in the Territory, taking into account the wishes
of its population;

      2.    Requests the administering Power and relevant regional and
international organizations to continue to support the efforts of the
territorial Government to address the socio-economic development of
the Territory.


                                  X.  Tokelau

      The General Assembly,

      Referring to resolution A above,

      Having heard the statements of the representative of New Zealand,
the administering Power, and the Special Representative of Tokelau,
who conveyed a message from the Council of Faipule (joint chairmen of
the General Fono (Council)) to the Special Committee on the Situation
with regard to the Implementation of the Declaration on the Granting
of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples,

      Recalling the solemn declaration on the future status of Tokelau
delivered by the Ulu-o-Tokelau (highest authority of Tokelau) on
30 July 1994, that an act of self-determination in Tokelau is now
under active consideration, together with the constitution of a self-
governing Tokelau, and that the present preference of Tokelau is for a
status of free association with New Zealand,

      Noting the emphasis placed in the solemn declaration on the terms
of Tokelau's intended free association relationship with New Zealand,
including the expectation that the form of help Tokelau could continue
to expect from New Zealand in promoting the well-being of its people,
besides its external interests, would be clearly established in the
framework of that relationship,

      Noting also the Territory's concentrated focus in 1995 on
strengthening its national institutions and creating a structure of
government to meet modern needs, preparatory to the exercise by the
people of Tokelau of their right to self-determination,

      Acknowledging the endeavours of Tokelau to be self-reliant to the
greatest extent possible,

      Noting with appreciation the continuing exemplary cooperation of
the administering Power with regard to the work of the Special
Committee on the Situation with regard to the Implementation of the
Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and
Peoples relating to Tokelau and its readiness to permit access by
United Nations visiting missions to the Territory,

      Recalling the dispatch in 1994 of a United Nations visiting
mission to Tokelau,

      1.    Notes, on the basis of statements made by representatives of
the administering Power and Tokelau subsequent to the 1994 United
Nations visiting mission, that Tokelau is working towards an act of
self-determination that would result in Tokelau assuming a status in
accordance with the options on future status for Non-Self-Governing
Territories contained in Principle VI of the annex to General Assembly
resolution 1541 (XV) of 15 December 1960;

      2.    Also notes the expressed wishes of the people of the
Territory indicating a strong preference for a status of free
association with New Zealand;

      3.    Further notes the readiness of the people of Tokelau to
assume full governmental responsibility and to conduct their own
affairs within the framework of a constitution, which is currently
being developed;

      4.    Welcomes the assurances of the Government of New Zealand
that it will meet its obligations to the United Nations with respect
to Tokelau and abide by the freely expressed wishes of the people of
Tokelau with regard to their future status;

      5.    Invites the administering Power and United Nations agencies
to continue their assistance to the social and economic development of
Tokelau.


                         XI.  Turks and Caicos Islands

      The General Assembly,

      Referring to resolution A above,

      Noting recent changes to the Constitution of the Territory and
the intention of the territorial Government to continue to campaign
for further constitutional changes,

      Noting also that general elections took place in the Territory on
31 January 1995,

      Noting further the policy of the authorities of maintaining a
balance between creating a more liberal investment environment and
preserving access by the population to economic benefits,

      Noting the increase in aid, in particular financial assistance,
granted to the territorial Government by the Government of the United
Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland,

      1.    Requests the administering Power to conduct, at the earliest
possible date, an appropriate exercise to ascertain the will of the
people regarding the future status of the Territory;

      2.    Calls upon the administering Power and the relevant regional
and international organizations to continue to support the efforts of
the territorial Government to address the socio-economic development
of the Territory.


                      XII.  United States Virgin Islands

      The General Assembly,

      Referring to resolution A above,

      Noting that general elections were held in November 1994,

      Noting also that a majority of those who voted in the referendum
on the political status of the Territory on 11 October 1993 supported
the existing territorial status arrangement with the United States of
America,

      Noting further the continuing interest of the territorial
Government in seeking associate membership in the Organization of
Eastern Caribbean States and observer status in the Caribbean
Community,

      Noting the necessity of further diversifying the Territory's
economy,

      Noting also that the question of Water Island is still under
consideration,

      Noting further that in 1993 the territorial Government purchased
the assets of the West Indian Company, which had significant property
and development interests in the Charlotte Amalie Harbour,

      Recalling the dispatch in 1977 of a United Nations visiting
mission to the Territory,

      1.    Requests the administering Power to continue to assist the
elected territorial Government in achieving its political, economic
and social goals;

      2.    Also requests the administering Power to facilitate the
participation of the Territory, as appropriate, in various
organizations, in particular the Organization of Eastern Caribbean
States and the Caribbean Community;

      3.    Welcomes the negotiations between the administering Power
and the territorial Government on the question of Water Island.

                                                          82nd plenary meeting
                                                               6 December 1995


                                     Note

1/   A/50/23 (Part VI), chap. X.

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