|Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York|
Sixty-fourth General Assembly
General Assembly Adopts Decision Setting 14 December as Date for Commemoration
of Decolonization Declaration’s Fiftieth Anniversary
Recognizing the crucial role of the Decolonization Declaration to the expansion of the United Nations membership, the General Assembly adopted a decision today to commemorate on 14 December 2010 the fiftieth anniversary of resolution 1514 (1960), which contains the landmark document.
Acting without a vote on the recommendation of its Fourth Committee (Special Political and Decolonization), the General Assembly adopted the decision, as contained in the report of the Special Committee on Decolonization (document A/64/23/Add.1).
Speaking in explanation of position after the action, Cuba’s representative noted that 17 African countries had celebrated their fiftieth anniversary of independence this year. The commemoration would invite a renewed commitment to the decolonization of peoples, and emphasize that all Member States must ensure that all Non-Self-Governing Territories could exercise the right to self-determination and extinguish the scourge of colonialism.
Also speaking after the action, Donatus Keith St. Aimee (Saint Lucia), Chairman of the Special Committee, said on behalf of that body that it would take seriously its responsibility to act as a vehicle for enabling those not in the Assembly today to decide their own future. The commemoration would mark an important moment, he said, urging all to join in celebrating the landmark Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples.
Resolution 1514 proclaims the need to bring a speedy and unconditional end to colonialism in all its forms and manifestations. By the text, the Assembly states that the subjection of peoples to alien subjugation, domination and exploitation constitutes a denial of fundamental human rights, contravenes the United Nations Charter and impedes the promotion of world peace and cooperation.
On the fortieth anniversary of the resolution, in 2000, the Assembly declared 2001–2010 the Second International Decade for the Eradication of Colonialism, by adopting resolution 55/146.
Also today, on the Fourth Committee’s recommendation, the Assembly unanimously adopted a decision — contained in the Committee’s report “Effects of atomic radiation” (document A/64/403/Add.1) — to postpone until its sixty-fifth session consideration of the report of the fifty-seventh session of the United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation.
Established by the Assembly in 1955, the Scientific Committee is charged with assessing and reporting on levels and effects of exposure to ionizing radiation. Governments around the world rely on its estimates as the scientific basis for evaluating radiation risk and establishing protective measures.
The General Assembly will reconvene at a time and date to be announced.
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