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Daily Press Briefing by the Spokeswoman for the President


30 JUNE 2000

Today is the fifth, and final, day of the General Assembly’s twenty-fourth Special Session on Social Development.  The expectation is that, by day’s end, Governments will adopt an outcome document containing further actions and initiatives to implement the commitments made at the 1995 World Summit for Social Development in Copenhagen.

The document seeks to further strengthen the Copenhagen Declaration and Programme of Action for Social Development.  It breaks considerably new ground that will have a direct impact on the policies of countries and international financial institutions, and will also provide a framework for further negotiations at the Millennium Summit in September and next year’s International High-level Event on Financing for Development.

John Langmore, the Director of the Division for Social Policy and Development, will elaborate on the new initiatives being proposed, such as a time-bound target for halving extreme poverty by 2015, a global campaign against poverty, initiatives to promote corporate social responsibility, etc.  He will also update you on what is happening in the Ad Hoc Committee of the Whole and its Working Groups.  The Committee met briefly in plenary to elect, as Vice-Chairman, Kheireddine Ramoul (Algeria).

The Assembly is hearing the final 46 speakers in plenary.  The list includes the Prime Minister of Guinea-Bissau, 2 non-Member States, 9 observers and 9 non-governmental organizations (NGOs).

By the end of the debate, the Assembly will have heard: 8 Heads of State; 7 Vice-Presidents; 1 Crown Prince; 11 Heads of Government; 11 Deputy Prime Ministers; 78 Ministers; 18 Vice-Ministers; and 26 Chairpersons of delegations, for a total of 160 Member States (28 Member States did not participate).  There were also 2 non-Member States (Switzerland and the Holy See); 10 observers, including Palestine; and 9 NGOs.  The total number of speakers in the plenary will therefore be 181.

At the start of today’s meeting, the Assembly adopted a resolution by which it approved the report of its nine-member Credentials Committee (A/S-24/7), containing a recommendation to accept, subject to its decision on Afghanistan, the credentials of representatives of Member States to the Special Session.

The President of the General Assembly, Dr. Theo-Ben Gurirab, met this morning with the Secretary-General of the Inter-Parliamentary Union, Mr. Anders B. Johnson.