Excerpts from the briefing given by the Spokesman for the President of the General Assembly:
Dr. Han Seung-soo, yesterday sent a letter to the Swiss Foreign Minister congratulating him on the positive outcome of the referendum.
Regarding membership, a candidate sends a note to the Secretary-General saying that it accepts the obligations in the Charter and would like to become a member. The SG sends the note to the Member States and it is first taken up by the Security Council. If the Council recommends membership, the application goes to the General Assembly where two thirds of the Members present and voting have to be in favour. Membership is effective on the day the General Assembly takes action.
Dr. Han is expected to return to NY on 7 March 2002.
Today, the Fifth Committee began a series of meetings which will continue till the 15th. Another round of meetings is scheduled to run from 6 to 31 May.
The Ad Hoc Committee on an international convention against the reproductive cloning of human beings met from 25 February-1 March. On Friday, they went through the draft report (A/AC.263/L.2) paragraph by paragraph and amended it considerably. The Committee has not yet started drafting a convention but is in the process of establishing its own mandate; this task will continue in a working group under the Sixth Committee in late September.