13 February 2001
Today the President presided over an informal brainstorming
session of the General Committee. The aim of the meeting was
to look at the working methods of the General Assembly and
to come up with some specific ways that they could be improved.
The members of the General Committee, which are the 21 Vice-Presidents
of the General Assembly and the Chairpersons of the Six Main
Committees, participated in the session, as did a number of
Permanent Representatives of other delegations. Mr. Holkeri
made opening remarks in the beginning of the meeting, emphasizing
that as the President of the General Assembly it is his duty
to continue the process of reform, which is also in accordance
with the mandate given by the Millennium Summit. The full
text of his opening remarks is available on the "Statements
and Messages" page.
The President met with General John de Chastelain of Canada.
The General and Mr. Holkeri were two of the three members
of the International Body, chaired by Senator George Mitchell
of the United States. The group was set up by the governments
of United Kingdom and Ireland, on the issue of decommissioning
of illegal weapons in Northern Ireland. Later they served
as Independent Chairmen of the Northern Ireland Peace Process,
which led to the accord known as Good Friday Agreement. Mr.
Holkeri also attended a lunch in honor of General de Chastelain,
hosted by H.E. Mr. Michael Phillips, Consul General of Canada.