United Nations

A/RES/51/91


General Assembly

Distr. GENERAL  

28 February 1997

ORIGINAL:
ENGLISH



Fifty-first session
Agenda item 110 (b)


                  RESOLUTION ADOPTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY

            [on the report of the Third Committee (A/51/619/Add.2)]


            51/91.      Effective promotion of the Declaration
                        on the Rights of Persons Belonging to
                        National or Ethnic, Religious and
                        Linguistic Minorities


      The General Assembly,

      Recalling its resolution 47/135 of 18 December 1992, as well as
its subsequent resolutions on the Declaration on the Rights of Persons
Belonging to National or Ethnic, Religious and Linguistic Minorities,

      Concerned by the growing frequency and severity of disputes and
conflicts concerning minorities in many countries, and their often
tragic consequences, and concerned also that persons belonging to
minorities are particularly vulnerable to displacement through,
inter alia, population transfers, refugee flows and forced relocation,

      Considering that the promotion and protection of the rights of
persons belonging to national or ethnic, religious and linguistic
minorities contribute to political and social stability and peace and
enrich the cultural heritage of society as a whole in the States in
which such persons live,

      Noting that the Working Group on Minorities of the Subcommission
on Prevention of Discrimination and Protection of Minorities held its
second session from 30 April to 3 May 1996 and that its report will be
made available to the Commission on Human Rights,

      Acknowledging that the United Nations has an increasingly
important role to play regarding the protection of minorities,

      1.    Takes note with appreciation of the report of the Secretary-
General; 1/

      2.    Reaffirms the obligation of States to ensure that persons
belonging to minorities may exercise fully and effectively all human
rights and fundamental freedoms without any discrimination and in full
equality before the law in accordance with the Declaration on the
Rights of Persons Belonging to National or Ethnic, Religious and
Linguistic Minorities;

      3.    Urges States and the international community to promote and
protect the rights of persons belonging to national or ethnic,
religious and linguistic minorities, as set out in the Declaration,
including through the facilitation of their participation in all
aspects of the political, economic, social, religious and cultural
life of society and in the economic progress and development of their
country;

      4.    Recognizes that respect for human rights and the promotion
of understanding and tolerance by Governments as well as between and
among minorities is central to the protection and promotion of the
rights of persons belonging to minorities;

      5.    Urges States to take, as appropriate, all the necessary
constitutional, legislative, administrative and other measures to
promote and give effect to the principles contained in the
Declaration;

      6.    Appeals to States to make bilateral and multilateral
efforts, as appropriate, in order to protect the rights of persons
belonging to national or ethnic, religious and linguistic minorities
in their countries, in accordance with the Declaration;

      7.    Calls upon the Secretary-General to make available, at the
request of Governments concerned, qualified expertise on minority
issues, including the prevention and resolution of disputes, to assist
in existing or potential situations involving minorities;

      8.    Welcomes the activities of the United Nations High
Commissioner for Human Rights relating to the promotion and protection
of the rights of persons belonging to minorities and, in accordance
with his mandate, calls upon him to promote the implementation of the
Declaration and to continue to engage in a dialogue with Governments
concerned for that purpose;

      9.    Requests the High Commissioner to continue his efforts to
improve the coordination and cooperation of United Nations programmes
and agencies which deal with minority issues in activities related to
the promotion and protection of the rights of persons belonging to
minorities;

      10.   Urges all treaty bodies to give due regard, within their
respective mandates, to the promotion and protection of the rights of
persons belonging to minorities;

      11.   Calls upon States to continue to include in their reports to
treaty bodies, in accordance with the relevant conventions,
information on measures taken for the promotion and protection of the
rights of persons belonging to minorities;

      12.   Calls upon all special representatives, special rapporteurs
and working groups of the Commission on Human Rights to continue to
give attention, within their respective mandates, to situations
involving minorities;

      13.   Encourages intergovernmental and non-governmental
organizations to continue to contribute to the promotion and
protection of the rights of persons belonging to national or ethnic,
religious and linguistic minorities;

      14.   Requests the Secretary-General to report to the General
Assembly at its fifty-second session on the implementation of the
present resolution under the item entitled "Human rights questions".

                                                          82nd plenary meeting
                                                              12 December 1996


                                     Note

1/    A/51/536.

 

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