On 17 December 1998, the General Assembly of the United Nations adopted
resolution 53/202 by which it decided to designate the fifty-fifth session the General
Assembly to be opened on 5 September 2000 as "The
Millennium Assembly of the United Nations" and to convene a "Millennium Summit of the United Nations". In endorsing the
proposal for the Millennium Assembly and Millennium Summit, which has been put forward by
the Secretary-General, the General Assembly decided that the turn of the century
constitutes a unique and symbolically compelling moment for the membership of the United
Nations to articulate and affirm an animating vision for the United Nations in the new
Heads of State and/or Government of the Member
States of the United Nations gathered at the Headquarters of the United Nations in New
York to participate in the Millennium Summit on 6 to 8 September 2000. The Summit was a
historic opportunity to agree on a process for fundamental review of the role of, and
challenges facing the United Nations in the new century.
On 3 April 2000, the Secretary-General
presented his report "We the peoples: The role of
the United Nations in the twenty-first century" (A/54/2000) in which he
identified challenges facing the international community and put forward an action plan
for addressing them.
In preparation for the Millennium Assembly and the Millennium report of the
Secretary-General (A/54/2000), five informal regional hearings, organized in cooperation with the
regional commissions of the United Nations, were been held in Beirut for Western Asia, in
Addis Ababa for Africa, in Geneva for Europe, in Santiago de Chile for Latin America and
the Caribbean, and in Tokyo for Asia and the Pacific, to elicit the views of civil society
with respect to the Millennium Assembly.
As a companion event, and further to
the Secretary-Generals recommendation, civil society organizations have organized
and held on 22-26 May 2000 at United Nations Headquarters a "Millennium Forum" which has adopted the Millennium Forum Declaration and Agenda for Action.