United Nations

A/RES/51/158


General Assembly

Distr. GENERAL  

30 January 1997

ORIGINAL:
ENGLISH



Fifty-first session
Agenda item 145


                  RESOLUTION ADOPTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY

               [on the report of the Sixth Committee (A/51/625)]


            51/158.  Electronic treaty database

      The General Assembly,

      Conscious of the obligations resulting from Article 102 of the
Charter of the United Nations and the importance of treaties in the
development of international law and the international legal order,

      Noting that the recent expansion of the membership of the
Organization, combined with an increase in international treaty-making
activity, has led to the growth in the volume of work carried out by
the Treaty Section of the Office of Legal Affairs of the Secretariat
and contributed to the accumulation of unpublished treaties,

      Recognizing, consistent with the obligation contained in
Article 102 of the Charter, the importance of the expeditious
processing, registration and publication of treaties and treaty-
related actions,

      Welcoming the range of measures already taken by the Treaty
Section to expedite the publication of the United Nations Treaty
Series and to provide electronic access to the publication
Multilateral Treaties Deposited with the Secretary-General through the
Internet,

      Desirous that all efforts are made to ensure that the Treaty
Section develops a comprehensive electronic database containing all
treaty depositary and registration information,

      Noting the steps taken by the Ad Hoc Open-Ended Working Group on
Informatics established by the Economic and Social Council to
harmonize and improve United Nations information systems for optimal
utilization and accessibility by all Member States,

      Noting also that the existing and proposed Internet access to
United Nations treaty publications is and will be in addition to the
hard-copy printed versions of such publications,

      1.    Welcomes the statement of objective of developing a
comprehensive electronic database containing all depositary and
registration information and disseminating electronically treaties and
treaty law-related information from the database, including through
on-line access, as contained in the report of the Secretary-General on
the United Nations Decade of International Law; 1/

      2.    Recalls the request of the Legal Counsel that in order to
expedite the registration and publication of treaties all Member
States should submit treaty texts in disk or other electronic format
in addition to the certified print copy;

      3.    Requests the Secretary-General to continue to give priority
to the implementation of the computerization programme in the Treaty
Section of the Office of Legal Affairs of the Secretariat;

      4.    Calls upon the Secretary-General to ensure that all
necessary support is provided to expedite the publication of the
printed version of the United Nations Treaty Series through the prompt
provision of the necessary equipment and translation services;

      5.    Endorses the proposed Internet dissemination of the United
Nations Treaty Series, following the same rules applicable to the
printed version of the publication, in addition to the current access
to the Multilateral Treaties Deposited with the Secretary-General, and
recognizes that Internet access to treaties and treaty law-related
information is particularly valuable in countries where the cost of
maintaining complete collections of treaties in bound volume form is
relatively high;

      6.    Also endorses the Secretary-General's exploring of the
economic and practical feasibility of recovering the costs of
providing such Internet access to the United Nations Treaty Series and
the Multilateral Treaties Deposited with the Secretary-General,
subject to Member States, organizations of the United Nations system,
other international organizations and other non-commercial users not
being charged a user fee, and presenting his findings to Member
States;

      7.    Invites the Secretary-General to consider the possibility of
translating the list of titles of treaties appearing in the
publication Multilateral Treaties Deposited with the Secretary-General
into the other official languages of the United Nations and
disseminating such lists via the Internet, and to submit a report to
the General Assembly at its fifty-second session;

      8.    Invites the specialized agencies of the United Nations
system, other international organizations and Member States with
depositary functions for multilateral treaties to use their best
endeavours to provide Internet access to treaties and treaty law-
related information as soon as practicable.


                                                          85th plenary meeting
                                                              16 December 1996


                                     Note

1/    A/51/278, para. 91.

 

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Date last posted: 10 January 2000 10:55:20
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