Note No. 5695
9 November 2001


Press Release
Note No. 5695

Note to Correspondents



Fifty-three countries have so far expressed interest in participating in a special treaty-signing/ratification event commencing on 10 November at United Nations Headquarters, with their number expected to increase further.  During

the weeklong event, special arrangements will be made for heads of State and government and foreign ministers to sign, ratify or accede, in particular, to

the terrorism-related Conventions deposited with the Secretary-General.  Around 100 treaty actions -- signatures, ratifications and accessions -- are expected.

The event will begin on Saturday, 10 November, at 8:40 a.m. with South Africa and conclude on Friday, 16 November.  At this stage, Bolivia, Nauru, Palau, Peru, Philippines, South Africa and Uruguay are expected to be represented by their heads of State.

The focus of the event will be on the four United Nations Conventions relating to terrorism deposited with the Secretary-General -- the 1973 Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Crimes against Internationally Protected Persons, including Diplomatic Agents; the 1979 International Convention against the Taking of Hostages; the 1997 International Convention for the Suppression of Terrorist Bombings; and the 1999 International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism.  The United Nations treaty network on terrorism provides a legal framework for addressing this scourge on a global scale, and it is hoped that the event will lead to increased participation in these Conventions.

But the event will include all Conventions deposited with the Secretary-General -- such as the Convention against Transnational Organized Crime, the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty[1], the Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Convention, and the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on Children in Armed Conflict.

The Secretary-General hopes that this initiative will contribute to strengthening the international rule of law -- which in today’s trying circumstances needs the unqualified commitment of every nation.  In his letter of invitation to heads of State and government, the Secretary-General stressed that States "need to take adequate measures to implement the obligations under these treaties within their domestic jurisdictions", and extended an offer to assist those States that need assistance in implementing treaty obligations.

A special facility will be prepared for the treaty event in the Kuwait Boat area, Delegates’ Entrance to the General Assembly (near the escalators).  Thesigning ceremonies will be open to participating delegations and the media. Journalists wishing to cover the event must gather at the General Assembly third floor media desk (tel. 963-3353 or 963-7756) and be escorted to the special facility by staff of the Department of Public Information (DPI).

A daily list of participants will be made available by DPI (please contact Sonia Lecca, Chief, Media Accreditation, at 963-6934, or Nanci St. Jones, Spokesman's Office, at 963-7160 or 963-7161).  When changes are made to the list during the day, the Treaty Section of the Office of Legal Affairs (Brad Smith, tel. 963-3942 or 963-5047) will notify Media Accreditation and the Spokesman's Office

United Nations Television news will cover each signing, and the footage will be replayed on in-house TV twice a day:  after the last morning signing and after the last afternoon signing.  Announcements about the timing of these replays will be made through the Spokesman's Office.  Media or delegations can order videos from the video library, at 963-0656 or 963-1561.

United Nations Photo will cover the event.  Copies of photos may be obtained from room S-805, tel. 963-6927.

Below is a list of countries as of 8 November (subject to change).

Further information on United Nations Conventions may be obtained from the United Nations Treaty Web site at http://untreaty.un.org.

For further information on the event, please contact Palitha Kohona, Chief, Treaty Section, Office of Legal Affairs, tel. 963-5048.


List of confirmed participants as of 8 November.  (This list is subject to change.  Please check with the Treaty Section, tels. 963-3942, 963-5047.)

Saturday, 10 November

8:40 a.m.   South Africa

10:15 a.m.  Brazil

10:45 a.m.  Canada

11:00 a.m. Bolivia

11:15 a.m. Jamaica

11:30 a.m. Slovenia

12:00 p.m. Namibia

12:30 p.m. Peru

12:45 p.m. Uruguay

4:00 p.m.  Monaco

4:30 p.m.  Mexico

4:45 p.m.  Portugal

6:00 p.m.  Romania

Sunday, 11 November

10:30 a.m. Cambodia

11:15 a.m. Mauritius

11:45 a.m. Andorra

3:15 p.m.  Bosnia and Herzegovina

3:30 p.m.  Croatia

Monday, 12 November

9:30 a.m.  Nauru

9:45 a.m.  Panama

10:00 a.m. Belarus

10:15 a.m. Saint Kitts and Nevis

10:30 a.m. Madagascar

10:45 a.m. Poland

11:00 a.m. New Zealand

11:30 a.m. Italy

3:00 p.m.  Mongolia

3:15 p.m.  Democratic People's Republic of Korea

5:00 p.m.  Costa Rica

6:00 p.m.  Austria

Tuesday, 13 November

10:00 a.m. China

11:00 a.m. Cape Verde

3:30 p.m.  Nigeria

Wednesday, 14 November

11:00 a.m. Palau

5:30 p.m.  Israel

Thursday, 15 November

10:15 a.m. Dominican Republic

10:30 a.m. Slovak Republic

12:00 p.m. Chile

1:00 p.m.  Armenia

3:00 p.m.  Ukraine

Friday, 16 November

9:00 a.m.  Republic of Moldova

10:30 a.m. Philippines

[1] A Conference on Facilitating the Entry into Force of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty is also taking place at United Nations Headquarters from Sunday, 11 November, to Tuesday, 13 November (see Press Release DC/2814).

For information media. Not an official record.