GENERAL ASSEMBLY ADOPTS RESOLUTION CALLING ON STATES NOT TO RECOGNIZE UNILATERAL COERCIVE ECONOMIC MEASURES

16 October 2002
GA/10083

GENERAL ASSEMBLY ADOPTS RESOLUTION CALLING ON STATES NOT TO RECOGNIZE UNILATERAL COERCIVE ECONOMIC MEASURES

16/10/2002
Press ReleaseGA/10083

Fifty-seventh General Assembly

Plenary

31st Meeting (AM)

GENERAL ASSEMBLY ADOPTS RESOLUTION CALLING ON STATES NOT TO RECOGNIZE

UNILATERAL COERCIVE ECONOMIC MEASURES

Delegates Also Resume Joint Debate on Security Council Reform

As it adopted a resolution on unilateral coercive economic measures this morning, the General Assembly called on all States not to recognize or apply such measures or legislation imposed by any State across territorial boundaries, which were contrary to recognized principles of international law.

Adopting the resolution by a recorded vote of 133 in favour to two against (Israel, United States) and two abstentions (Australia, Latvia), the Assembly reiterated its call for the repeal of unilateral extraterritorial laws that imposed coercive measures contrary to international law on corporations and nationals of other States.  (See voting annex for details.)

Also by the text, which was sponsored by Libya, the Assembly decided to include in the provisional agenda of its fifty-ninth session an item entitled "Elimination of unilateral extraterritorial coercive economic measures as a means of political and economic compulsion".

Speakers this morning emphasized the necessity for international trade to be unfettered by such measures and expressed concern about their impact on trade and development in the targeted States.  They also underscored the threat that such measures presented to the political sovereignty of independent States.

Venezuela's representative, speaking on behalf of the “Group of           77” developing countries and China, reiterated the position of the Ministers of the developing countries, which firmly rejected the imposition of such measures.  The Sudan's representative, on behalf of the Organization of the Islamic Conference, called upon all States not to respond to or apply such measures, stressing that it was their right to enjoy economic development.  Egypt emphasized, on behalf of the Group of African States, that coercive economic measures were a violation of the spirit of the contemporary world which was characterized by globalization.

Endorsing those views, Cuba's representative added that the United States had persisted in the use of unilateral coercive economic measures in order to further its own national interests.  Malaysia's representative also expressed dismay that such actions continued to be promulgated and employed as state policy.  However, the Observer for the Holy See said such coercive measures could be justified when used to preserve international peace and security.

General Assembly Plenary           - 1a -            Press Release 10083

31st Meeting (AM)                                      16 October 2002

The representative of the United States, explaining her delegation's vote against the resolution, said the text was a direct challenge to the sovereign right of States in the free conduct of their economic relations.  It also undermined the international community’s ability to respond to acts that were offensive to international norms and for which there must be consequences.  She stressed that unilateral and multilateral sanctions were a legitimate means to achieve foreign policy objectives, that the United States was not alone in that view or in that practice.

In other action this morning, the Assembly decided, on the recommendation of its General Committee, to include in the current agenda an additional item entitled "South American Zone of Peace and Cooperation” and to consider it directly in plenary session.  It decided further to defer consideration of the item “Question of the Comorian island of Mayotte” to its fifty-eighth session and to include it in the provisional agenda of that session.

In addition, the Assembly authorized its Ad Hoc Committee of the Whole for the Final Review and Appraisal of the Implementation of the United Nations New Agenda for the Development of Africa in the 1990s to hold one additional meeting, subject to availability of services, on an exceptional basis, in order to complete its work.

Other speakers in this morning's debate on the use of coercive economic measures were the representatives of Iran, South Africa (on behalf of the Non-Aligned Movement), Kuwait (on behalf of the Arab Group), Syria and Iraq.

Speaking in explanation of position after the vote were the representatives of Denmark (on behalf of the European Union and associated States), Canada, Australia and Armenia.

As the Assembly resumed its joint debate on the question of equitable representation on and increase in the membership of the Security Council, it heard from the representatives of the United Republic of Tanzania, Madagascar, Thailand, Ethiopia, Senegal, Russian Federation, Zimbabwe, Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and Poland.

The Assembly will meet again at 3 p.m. to conclude that joint debate.

Background

The General Assembly met this morning to consider elimination of unilateral extraterritorial coercive economic measures as a means of political and economic compulsion.  It had before it the Report of the Secretary-General (document A/57/179, Corr.1 and Add.1).

Following the Assembly’s request, the Secretary-General, by a note verbale dated 11 March 2002, invited governments to provide any information they considered a useful contribution to the preparation of the report.  As of 28 June 2002, replies were received from the Governments of Argentina, Cuba, Ecuador, Japan, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Mali, Libya and Syria.

Those Governments were in complete agreement that the use of unilateral coercive economic measures constituted a flagrant violation of the norms of international law, particularly in relation to freedom of trade, and were incompatible with the principles of the United Nations Charter.  They all called for the repeal of laws that sanctioned the subordination of one State’s interests to those of another.

Also before the Assembly was a draft resolution sponsored by Libya (document A/57/L.4) by which the Assembly would call upon all States not to recognize or apply unilateral extraterritorial coercive economic measures or legislation imposed by any State across territorial boundaries, which are contrary to recognized principles of international law.  The Assembly would also reiterate its call for the repeal of unilateral extraterritorial laws that impose coercive measures contrary to international law on corporations and nationals of other States.

By other terms, of the text, the Assembly would express deep concern at the negative impact of unilaterally imposed extraterritorial coercive economic measures on trade and financial and economic cooperation, including at the regional level, because they are contrary to recognized principles of international law and pose serious obstacles to the freedom of trade and the free flow of capital at the regional and international levels.

The Assembly also had before it the third report of the General Committee (document A/57/250/Add.2), which recommends the inclusion of an item entitled, “South American Zone of Peace and Cooperation” in the current agenda for consideration directly in plenary session.  The report also recommends that the Assembly defer consideration of an item entitled “Question of the Comorian island of Mayotte” to a later date

Also before the Assembly was a note by the Secretary-General (document A/57/486) transmitting the report of the Assembly’s Ad Hoc Committee of the Whole for the Final Review and Appraisal of the Implementation of the United Nations New Agenda for the Development of Africa in the 1990s.  In it, the Committee recommends the adoption of a draft decision by which the Assembly would authorize the Ad Hoc Committee to hold one additional meeting, subject to availability of services, on an exceptional basis, in order to complete the Committee’s work.

ABUZED OMAR DORDA (Libya) introduced the draft resolution on the elimination of unilateral extraterritorial coercive economic measures as a means of political and economic compulsion, saying that such measures were against the principles of the Charter, international law and sustainable development.  What right did any parliament in any country have to prohibit cooperation among nations he asked, calling on all Member States to vote in favour of the text.

VICENTE VALLENILLA (Venezuela), speaking on behalf of the “Group of       77” developing countries and China, reiterated the position of the Ministers of the developing countries, which firmly rejected “the imposition of laws and regulations with extraterritorial impact and all other forms of coercive economic measures, including unilateral sanctions against developing countries”.  He reiterated the urgent need to eliminate such actions immediately as they undermined the principles of the Charter and international law, and threatened freedom of trade and investment.

NASROLLAH KAZEMI KAMYAB (Iran) stated that unilateral extraterritorial economic measures had a negative impact on targeted countries and their populations and were contrary to common sense.  In times past, the General Assembly had adopted resolutions indicating widespread opposition to such measures.  The promulgation of such legislation infringed on the sovereignty of other States and was a clear violation of international law.  On many occasions Member States had expressed their disapproval of such legislation.

In an era of rapid change and in a world that needed peace and security, such measures must be rejected and substituted with dialogue between States to resolve their differences, he said, noting that coercive measures generally had an adverse impact on the development of trade and technology and weakened the development of the targeted countries.  They also inflicted grave and irreparable damage.

ELFATIH ERWA (Sudan), speaking on behalf of the Organization of the Islamic Conference, reiterated that all peoples had the right to determine freely the political status they deemed appropriate and to achieve their economic growth and social development.  Expressing deep concern over the imposition of unilateral extraterritorial coercive economic measures and their adverse effects, the Islamic Conference called upon all States not to respond to or apply such measures.  It also expressed solidarity with Libya, Iran and Sudan, as well as with other States suffering from unilateral economic sanctions.

BRUNO RODRÍGUEZ PARRILLA (Cuba), unequivocally rejecting any imposition of unilateral extraterritorial coercive measures as a means of political and economic compulsion, noted that the Assembly had, in many resolutions, opposed the application of such measures, which were a flagrant violation of Charter principles as well as international law.  However, the United States Government had continued to impose such measures to further its own national interests, particularly through such laws as the Helms-Burton Act and the D’Amato-Kennedy Act.

NG LIP YONG (Malaysia) expressed dismay that despite the recommendations adopted on the issue by the Assembly and United Nations conferences, unilateral coercive measures continued to be promulgated and employed as State policies and practices, with all their negative effects on the socio-economic development of the affected countries.  The imposition of such measures contravened international law and was totally incompatible, not only with international rules and regulations, but also with the principles of non-intervention and non-interference in the internal affairs of sovereign States.  He rejected the application of such measures as tools for political or economic pressure or coercion, noting their often debilitating effects on women, children, the elderly and the disabled.

From the developmental perspective, unilateral coercive measures were among the major obstacles to the implementation of the Declaration on the Right to Development.  They ran counter to the principles of non-discriminatory and open multilateral trade and hampered the progress of all developing countries.  They created barriers to free or unfettered trade among States.  In expressing his support for the text, he joined the call for the immediate repeal of such unilateral extraterritorial laws, particularly the D’Amato-Kennedy Act and the Helms-Burton Act.

AMR ABOUL ATTA (Egypt), speaking on behalf of the Group of African States, said that today's world, which overlapped on the economic and political levels, was characterized by globalization and interdependence among societies and cultures.  Coercive economic measures were a violation of the spirit of that world.

Noting that the United Nations Charter authorized the use of coercive measures only when international peace and security were threatened, he said that their unilateral use was a violation of international law and a clear threat to international cooperation and to the international trade and finance system.

Guided by the principles of the Charter, the countries of the African Group had expressed their rejection and condemnation of such measures, which should be eliminated in order to achieve a more just and peaceful world.  Coercive measures threatened freedom of investment and trade, whereas every State had an inalienable right to economic, social and cultural development and the right to choose the economic and social regimes that were best for its people.

JEANETTE NDHLOVU (South Africa), speaking on behalf of the Movement of Non-Aligned Countries, referred to the 12th summit of the Movement held in her country, where the decision had been taken to accept the challenge to transform fundamentally the nature of international relations in order to eliminate aggression, the use of force and unilateral coercive economic measures.  The Movement insisted on the right of States to exercise their right to fully determine their own political, economic and social systems and advocated an expansion of the role of developing countries in international trade.

She said that recourse to coercive actions by major trading countries was incompatible with international rules and with the principles of the World Trade Organization (WTO).  The unjustified and excessive use of anti-dumping measures was also of concern to the Movement.

No country should impose coercive economic measures, including the non-extension of most-favoured-nation status on developing countries, she said, calling on all States to put an immediate end to such practices.  They had a negative impact on international economic cooperation and worldwide efforts to move towards a non-discriminatory and open trading system.

BADER MOHAMMAD AL-AWADI (Kuwait), speaking on behalf of the Arab Group, noted that numerous Assembly resolutions had called for the elimination of unilateral coercive extraterritorial measures and that the Arab Group had expressed more than once its total rejection of such measures.

Urging the Assembly to continue to reject such measures, which aimed to place national law above international law, he stressed the inadmissibility of States intervening in the sovereign affairs of other States and expressed his delegation's support for the text before the Assembly.

MIKHAIL WEHBE (Syria) said the international community must discharge its duties in dealing with unilateral coercive measures.  Noting that globalization meant dealing with great challenges for which the world had to work together, he said that the imposition of such negative measures, particularly on developing countries, violated the rules of international law and the goals of the United Nations.

All peoples had the right to determine freely their own development, political situation and economic and social systems, he stressed, adding that the sovereign right of States had been confirmed in the Charter and other international instruments.  Unilateral coercive measures not only violated international law and laws governing international trade, but also had a negative impact on social and human development, he added.

MOHAMMED SALMAN ALI (Iraq) said practical experience had shown that coercive economic measures were a hateful weapon that could nevertheless not deny peoples their inalienable right to choose their own social, political and economic regimes.  They had hurt civilians, delayed development, disseminated the seeds of economic and political instability and flouted the United Nations Charter, as well as international standards, particularly those of sovereignty and non-intervention.  Economic coercive measures, whether imposed by specific countries or through multilateral forums, demonstrated a short-sighted policy.  Those countries that resorted to such measures were trying to give them a cover of legality by transforming them into multilateral measures as in the cases of Libya, Sudan, Iraq, Cuba and Iran. 

He said that a few countries, motivated by the arrogance of force, considered themselves above the law and would use all possible means to serve their interests.  The coercive economic measures imposed on Iraq had led to the destruction of its infrastructure and to a humanitarian catastrophe, one of the worst in modern history.  They had forced Iraq not to pay its fair share to the Organization and had lost the country the right to vote, otherwise it would have voted in favour of the draft before the Assembly.

RENATO R. MARTINO, Observer for the Holy See, reaffirmed that, although the Holy See did not have economic and trade relations with other States, it had sought to alleviate the distress suffered by civilian populations that were either directly or indirectly affected by international economic sanctions and other means of political and economic coercion. 

He said the Holy See considered it legitimate to resort to economic sanctions when confronted with threats to world peace, but several conditions must accompany such sanctions.  They should not be a means of warfare or punishment of a people, but a temporary means of exerting pressure on governments that threatened international peace.  They should be proportionate to the goals they aimed to achieve and should always be accompanied by dialogue.

The embargo, which was clearly defined by international law, must be subject to strict legal and ethical criteria and its humanitarian consequences should always be foreseen, he said.  In addition, there should be a mechanism for the independent and effective control of the humanitarian consequences of sanctions.

Action on Text

TOMAS A. CHRISTENSEN (Denmark), speaking on behalf of the European Union and associated States, referred to his delegation's statement of 26 October 2000, made as the General Assembly adopted resolution 55/6.

The Assembly then adopted the draft resolution before it by a recorded vote of 133 in favour to two against (Israel, United States) with two abstentions (Australia, Latvia).  (See voting annex for details.)

Explanation of Vote

CINDY COSTA (United States), explaining her delegation’s position, opposed the resolution, saying it served as a direct challenge to the sovereign right of States in the free conduct of their economic relations.  It also served to undermine the international community’s ability to respond to acts that were offensive to international norms and for which there must be consequences.  Unilateral and multilateral sanctions were a legitimate means to achieve foreign policy objectives, she stressed, adding that the United States was not alone in that view or in that practice.

Not too long ago, she recalled, unilateral and multilateral economic sanctions imposed on South Africa and Rhodesia had underscored the international community’s solidarity with the people of those countries in their struggle for their rights.  Those concrete measures had been appropriate then and remained so today, she said.

DEBRA PRICE (Canada), also speaking in explanation of position, said she had decided to support the resolution since it embodied important principles on the issue of extraterritorial application of national law.  Nevertheless, the text could still benefit from clarifications to make it fully consistent with the relevant principles of international law.  Canada was disappointed that the sponsoring delegation had chosen not to respond to the amendments that the Canadian delegation had sought to propose, which would have clarified the meaning of the text.

Canada could and did exercise extraterritorial jurisdiction unilaterally on the general basis of objective national principle, she said.  Accordingly, Canada did not object to the assertion of extraterritorial jurisdiction per se, but opposed conflicts created by such assertions of jurisdiction, specifically extraterritorial measures that contradicted or undermined the laws or clearly enunciated policies of another State exercising concurrent jurisdiction, on a territorial basis, over the same conduct.

She said that her understanding was that the inclusion of “coercive”, notably in operative paragraph 4, was not intended to condemn unilateral prescriptive measures, which applied the objective nationality principle, but to ensure that the scope of the resolution was meant to apply to the State that was the subject of sanctions or to affected third States and their nationals and corporations.

GUY O’BRIEN (Australia), also explaining his position, said his delegation continued to oppose the imposition of such measures, which affected third countries.  However, under certain circumstances, it might be appropriate to impose unilateral measures which might force governments to cease violating the rights of their citizens.  Australia, therefore, had abstained on the vote.

NIKOLAY SAHAKOV (Armenia) said that in voting in favour of the resolution, his delegation condemned the continuing practice of imposing such measures, particularly in the south Caucasus region.  They contravened international law and the principles of the Charter and their imposition was detrimental to developing countries, as well as those with economies in transition.

The Assembly then adopted the draft decision contained in the report of the Ad Hoc Committee of the Whole for the Final Review and Appraisal of the Implementation of the United Nations New Agenda for the Development of Africa in the 1990s.

The Assembly then resumed its joint debate on the question of equitable representation on and increase in the membership of the Security Council and related matters, taking up the report of the Open-Ended Working Group on that subject.

DAUDI N. MWAKAWAGO (United Republic of Tanzania) said that nearly 10 years on from the establishment of the Open-Ended Working Group, agreement on both the reform and expansion of the Security Council had made little progress.

The present task was to bring about greater democratization in the work of the Council by expanding the balance of representation in both categories of membership, he said.  Africa was the region with the largest number of Member States and during the last few years the Council had devoted more than half its time to African issues, yet the continent was not represented in the permanent category of membership.  Tanzania fully supported the African Union’s position of demanding two permanent and five elective seats for Africa.  The permanent seats should be allocated to Africa, to be held on a rotating basis.

The issue of the veto and the expansion of membership were integral parts of a common reform package, he added.  The same rights should be extended to newly entering permanent members joining the Council.  Moreover, the use of the veto should be restricted to only those issues considered critical by the international community.  The veto should not be used to extend the national rights of any Member State.

ZINA ANDRIANARIVELO-RAZAFY (Madagascar) said the Security Council must meet the expectations of the international community, but it was clear that change would not come easily.  In the nine years of its operation, the Working Group of the restructuring of the Security Council had not been able to advance the process leading to reform.  There had been no significant results, particularly in relation to those matters that went to the heart of the functioning of the Council.  There had been no advance in relation to its future composition, its expansion in both categories of its membership and in the use of the veto.  He said Madagascar supported the expansion of the Council to 26 members with Africa having two permanent seats and five non-permanent members.  It also had a concern about the role of the non-permanent members in the Council.  They should be privy to all decisions which were made there.  The veto, he said, was an anachronism, but since it could not be eliminated at this time, it should be used responsibly.  Its use should also be explained, in order to improve the functioning of the Council.

In the current gloomy prospects for the world, he said, Council reform was necessary and in spite of the difficulties, change was within grasp. Future generations deserved no less.

CHUCHAI KASEMSARN (Thailand), welcoming the report’s new format, said there was still room for further improvements, such as in evaluating the Council’s performance, thematic issues and the President’s monthly assessments of the Council’s work.  He said that political will helped the Council to act decisively in getting things done quickly, as in Timor-Leste, Afghanistan and Sierra Leone.  However, it should not act alone, but seek the cooperation of other United Nations bodies.

He said that the need for interaction and coordination with non-Council elements made transparency important, and commended efforts to ensure transparency in the work of the Counter-terrorism Committee.  Thailand hoped that those standards would be applied in the Council’s informal and formal deliberations on other issues.

Stressing the need for a reformed Security Council that struck a balance between efficiency and adequate representation of the wider international community, he said it was unfortunate that after 10 years, the Open-Ended Working Group was still unable to come up with substantive reform recommendations.  The process should not be allowed to atrophy, he said, suggesting that the Working Group explore new ideas to improve its working methods while maintaining the principle of considering all aspects of reform as a package.

He called for a gradual approach to resolving the veto question, beginning with its curtailment, and leading to its eventual abolition.  Thailand also supported the expansion of Council membership in both the permanent and non-permanent categories and saw Japan as a worthy candidate to be a new permanent member.

ABDUL MEJID HUSSEIN (Ethiopia) observed that representation within the Security Council did not correspond to current international realities and was not properly constituted to face the multifaceted threats to international peace and security.  Africa wanted the Council expanded, with more permanent and non-permanent members in conformity with the overwhelming desire of Member States for equitable regional and geographical representation.  The African Group did not accept the idea of expanding the Council’s non-permanent membership only, hence the region’s desire for two permanent seats.

Ethiopia welcomed the progress made in improving the Council’s working methods, particularly the increase in the use of open meetings.  However, there was a need for more transparency, accountability and effectiveness, in addition to briefings for non-members.  Ethiopia objected to the marginalization and exclusion of elected members from informal consultations on major regional and international issues, he added.

But he praised the Council for its accomplishments in three areas:  the Counter-terrorism Committee, Africa and peacekeeping missions.  The Committee had made the Council relevant in tackling terrorism, though much still remained to be done and more States should be involved in the war against terrorism.  The Council had also concentrated its efforts on promoting peace in Africa, but it should hold more meetings outside New York.  Finally, peacekeeping missions had accomplished much around the world, but more care should be taken in determining their leadership.

PAPA LOUIS FALL (Senegal) described the report of the Security Council as a model of clarity and concision, and welcomed the Council’s numerous public sessions on Africa and themes concerning the continent.  Yet, in spite of such positive developments, did not the growing number of conflicts in African countries and the Council’s differentiated treatment of them feed legitimate doubt and frustration over its will or capacity to react quickly and energetically, he asked.  Given the unilateral moves by certain States and regional organizations, was there not the risk of seeing the Council avoid acting under its statutory competence? 

On the subject of equitable representation and membership increase, he said reform must focus on the size of the Council, its working methods and the veto issue.  The Council's size was crucial because its current make-up did not take into account the emergence of new State actors.  Both categories of membership should be enlarged, taking into account a more equitable distribution between North and South.  On a Council of 26 members, Africa should have at least two permanent and two non-permanent seats, he said, adding that the continent was anxious to contribute to the promotion of international peace and security.

He urged the Council to explore new avenues of innovation in its working methods, including the issuing of critical evaluation reports and compendium reports on developments already introduced.  Moreover, each of the Council's     15 members had an equal right to express their opinions.  The image of the United Nations would be tarnished if it functioned on a “two-speed” basis, with the non-permanent members only present to echo the statements of the active, permanent minority.  The abolition of the veto -- a vestige of a time thought long past -- should also be examined through calm, responsible and realistic discussion.

GENNADY GATILOV (Russian Federation) said that the Security Council’s capability to respond quickly to new challenges to global peace was more important than ever.  The Council's annual report detailed its efforts, including steps taken to improve its working methods, he said, adding that the most important achievement was the creation of the Counter-terrorism Committee.  The Council had also made remarkable progress in settling regional conflicts.

However, he said the current global problems demonstrated that Security Council reform should ensure not only the preservation of the Council’s capability to effectively exercise its powers under the United Nations Charter, but also its strengthening.  The Russian Federation favoured the broadest possible agreement, ideally a consensus, with regard to a possible formula for the Council's enlargement.  In addition, efficient Council work should ensure a balance of interests and a consensus.

He said that ideas leading to the infringement on the prerogatives and powers of the current permanent members of the Council, including the right of veto, were counterproductive.  Giving the right of veto to new permanent members should be discussed only when there was an agreement on the specific composition of an enlarged Council.

TICHAONA. J. B. JOKONYA (Zimbabwe) said that, despite the fact that the Working Group had been discussing reform for almost 10 years, it was no closer to reaching agreement in the critical areas of reforming the Council.  Instead of agreeing quickly on reform, members continued to fall back on positions articulated in previous years.  Procrastination had hampered the smooth operation of the Organization, he added.

There was an urgent need to increase the Council membership, in both the permanent and non-permanent categories, so that those States that had joined the United Nations after 1945 would also be represented, he said.  Africa and South America had no representation in the permanent category, he noted, rejecting the notion that there should be no increase in that category.  That argument sought to keep those not represented out of meaningful participation in Council matters, despite the fact that 70 per cent of the Council’s time was spent on issues concerning the Third World.

In that context, Africa’s request for two rotating permanent seats was not was not unreasonable, he said, suggesting that the Working Group take a decision by vote.  Council reform would never enjoy consensus, particularly in the critical areas of the veto and levels of enlargement, he added.

DEJAN ŠAHOVIĆ (Federal Republic of Yugoslavia) noted that a prominent part of the Council’s report dealt directly with his country and his region.  He noted that, in the past year, Yugoslavia and Croatia had reached an agreement on provisional transboundary regime in Prevlaka.  He said the presence of United Nations observers there had been a key factor in securing a stable situation on the ground, thereby enabling the two sides to engage fully in the quest for a mutually acceptable solution.  The recent extension of the United Nations Mission of Observers in Prevlaka (UNMOP) mandate would make it possible to finalize the necessary practical arrangements on the matter, he said. 

He said the termination in September 2001 of prohibitions imposed by resolution 1160 (1998) was a very important development for his country as it abolished the last remaining United Nations sanctions against Yugoslavia.  He welcomed the continued engagement of the Council, evident from regular monthly debates that closely monitored the performance of the United Nations Interim Administration in Kosovo (UNMIK) and the situation on the ground.  That practice should continue. 

Kosovo had entered a sensitive phase of institution-building, he said, and it was therefore extremely important that the political process be channelled in the direction of long-lasting stability and the true establishment of a multi-ethnic and democratic society with the full involvement of the Council, rather than through a “low-key approach”, as mentioned in the Council’s report.

JANUSZ STAŃCZYK (Poland) said the change in format made the report of the Security Council more concise and focused, and thus enhanced its relevance to the needs of the Member States.  The events of the past year had both demonstrated the Council’s ability to stand united in the face of threats to the whole international community, as well as the indispensability of the Organization in effectively dealing with problems of a global nature.

He reviewed some of the issues considered by the Security Council in the past year, and said the Council’s missions to conflict areas were an important tool for conflict resolution and for bringing lasting peace to troubled regions.

He said it was troubling to see that no consensus on comprehensive reform of the Council had been reached.  Poland supported expansion of both categories of

membership.  In the permanent category, the legitimate expectations of underrepresented regions like Africa, Asia and Latin America, and the important roles played by Germany and Japan, should be taken into account.  The non-permanent category should also be expanded to increase the overall representativeness of the Council.  The regional group of Eastern European states should be allocated an additional non-permanent seat on the reformed Council.  The question of the veto should also be addressed, while ensuring the continued ability of the Council to function effectively and with increased efficiency.

(annex follows)

Vote on Elimination of unilateral extraterritorial coercive measures as a means of political and economic compulsion.

The General Assembly resolution elimination of unilateral extraterritorial coercive measures as a means of political and economic compulsion (document A/57/L.4) was adopted by a recorded vote of 133 in favour to two against, with two abstentions, as follows:

In favour:  Algeria, Andorra, Angola, Argentina, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Belarus, Belgium, Benin, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Cameroon, Canada, Chile, China, Comoros, Congo, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Denmark, Djibouti, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, Eritrea, Estonia, Fiji, Finland, France, Gambia, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Guatemala, Guinea, Guyana, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Iran, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Lebanon, Lesotho, Libya, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Malta, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Monaco, Morocco, Myanmar, Namibia, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Russian Federation, Saint Lucia, Samoa, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Thailand, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Tunisia, Turkey, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United Republic of Tanzania, Uruguay, Venezuela, Viet Nam, Yemen, Yugoslavia, Zimbabwe.

Against:  Israel, United States.

Abstaining:  Australia, Latvia.

Absent:  Afghanistan, Albania, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bhutan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Burundi, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Colombia, Côte d’Ivoire, Dominica, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Grenada, Guinea-Bissau, Haiti, Honduras, Iraq, Kiribati, Kyrgyzstan, Liberia, Marshall Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Mongolia, Mozambique, Nauru, Nicaragua, Niger, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Rwanda, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Sao Tome and Principe, Solomon Islands, Somalia, Suriname, Swaziland, Tajikistan, Timor-Leste, Togo, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, Uzbekistan, Vanuatu, Zambia.

Resolution 57/5 was adopted by 133 votes to two, with two abstentions (resolution A/57/L.4).

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For information media. Not an official record.