19 May 2011

Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations Recommends 25 Groups for Consultative Status, Including Brazilian-based Institute Focused on ‘War-Affected’ Women

19 May 2011
Economic and Social Council
Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

Committee on NGOs

24th & 25th Meetings (AM & PM)

Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations Recommends 25 Groups for Consultative

Status, Including Brazilian-based Institute Focused on ‘War-Affected’ Women


Completing its fourth day of the resumed 2011 session, the Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) today recommended special consultative status for 25 entities to the Economic and Social Council, and postponed consideration of 26 additional groups until the Committee receive answers to its outstanding questions.

General, special or roster status is granted in accordance with such criteria as the applicant’s mandate, governance and financial regime.  Organizations enjoying general and special status can attend meetings of the Economic and Social Council and circulate statements, while those with general status can, in addition, address meetings and propose agenda items.  Roster-status non-governmental organizations can only attend meetings.  Organizations with general and special status must also submit a report every four years.

During the meeting, delegates examined a range of applications from candidate NGOs working to provide a diverse set of services across the globe.  Among the issues covered were academic freedom, fighting, kidnapping and forced disappearance, and economic and social assistance for women.

The Committee recommended special consultative status for two NGOs based in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.  One of them, Action des Chrétiens activistes des droits de l'homme á Shabunda, works to combat poverty through sustainable development.  The other, Action Sensibilisation sur les Nouvelles Technologies de L'Information et de la Communication, promotes the use of information technology and communication to provide farmers with necessary knowledge tools.

A number of applicants were also recommended that deal with women’s issues, such as the Association of War-Affected Women, based in Sri Lanka, and the Brazil-based Equit Institute, which works at the intersection of gender and development, examining the linkage between gender norms and the economic situation of women.

Two applications relating to women’s issues were delayed, however, owing to the creation of UN Women and the request by some Committee members that the NGOs change either their names or terminology, which used the name “UNIFEM”.

The Committee will reconvene at 10 a.m., Friday, 20 May, to review quadrennial reports, both new and deferred, and to take up issues relating to such matters as name changes, withdrawn and suspended NGOs, and special reports, and to continue its consideration of the remaining deferred applications.


The Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) met this morning to continue its resumed session, to run through Tuesday, 24 May, for which it had before it an information note for participants (document E/C.2/2011/1).

The Committee today recommended special consultative status for the following organizations:

First Nations Summit, an international organization based in Canada that represents 51 First Nations governmental or political bodies (70 per cent of British Columbia’s First Nation population), working to negotiate treaties throughout the province of British Columbia, Canada.

High Atlas Foundation, a United States-based international organization, working to establish development projects in different parts of Morocco that local communities design and manage, and that are in partnership with Government and non-government agencies.

Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa, an international organization based in Canada, working to enlighten citizens of the Horn of Africa on human rights, to detect, monitor, investigate, verify and report on human rights violations, and to conduct research on human rights issues with a view to disseminating their findings and/or conclusions.

Hunt Alternatives Fund, a United States-based international organization, created to provide grants and technical assistance in the field of human service.

Institute of Noahide code — 7 Laws for 70 Nations, a United States-based national organization, working to encourage the practice of The Seven Laws of Noah, comprising “seven universal laws biblically binding upon all humanity”.

International Center for Alcohol Policies, a United States-based international organization, created to promote understanding of the role of alcohol in society and to help reduce the abuse of alcohol worldwide by encouraging dialogue, and pursuing partnerships involving the beverage alcohol industry, Governments, the public health community, and others interested in alcohol policy.

Karat Coalition, an international organization based in Poland, created as a response to the invisibility of women from Central and Eastern Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States, and their concerns and needs in the international arena.

Mental Health Initiative for Africans in Crisis, a United States-based international organization that provides emergency and long-term mental and psychosocial health care to individuals in developing nations facing natural or man-made crises, such as war, tribal, religious, or political conflicts, torture, weather or environmental hazard, extreme poverty, terminal illness, such as HIV/AIDS, and abuse and neglect of the vulnerable, especially children and women.

Redress Trust, an international human rights organization based in the United Kingdom that is dedicated to the eradication of torture, and which aims to promote justice for victims of torture and related international crimes, hold accountable the Governments and individuals who perpetrate torture, and develop the means of ensuring compliance with international standards, as well as securing remedies for victims.

Restoration World Outreach Ministries, a United States-based international organization, working to “restore order to the Body of Christ and to the Nations through the restoration of the Apostolic Doctrine, Prophetic Vision and the Five Fold Ministry to the Church”, focusing primarily on sustainable development through micro- and small business development, education and youth programmes, poverty eradication and the protection of human rights.

Yale International Relations Association, a United States-based international organization, seeking to further the Yale community's understanding of international relations and to educate its members, the Yale community, and others around the world about international affairs.

Environmental Management for Livelihood Improvement Bwaise Facility, a national organization based in Uganda that aims to empower communities to implement development plans and programmes that promote sustainable development.

Action des Chrétiens activistes des droits de l'homme á Shabunda, a national organization based in Democratic Republic of the Congo, working to promote and defend human rights with an emphasis on the rights of victims, witnesses, women and children, to promote justice and fight impunity, and combat poverty through sustainable development.

Action Sensibilisation sur les Nouvelles Technologies de L'Information et de la Communication, a national organization based in Democratic Republic of the Congo, working to promote Information Technology and Communication for the purpose of assisting women and children, provide farmers with knowledge tools for processing information, and provide orientation sessions for volunteer information technology personnel in individual schools, districts, universities, associations, institutions and companies.

Asociación Panameña de Corredores y Promotores de Bienes Raices, a national organization based on Panama, working to serve as a liaison between its members and their customers to ensure good business practices, governed by the strictest ethical behaviours, and to encourage more and better investments, contributing to better living conditions for Panama’s citizens.

Association of War-Affected Women, a national organization based in Sri Lanka, working to promote a peaceful and prosperous Sri Lanka where all its peoples can live with dignity and the enjoyment of equal rights.

Assyrian Aid Society — Iraq, a national organization based in Iraq, working to help Assyrians in need, to promote the Assyrian culture and heritage, and to maintain a structure capable of responding to unexpected crises for Assyrians requiring immediate mobilization.

Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre, a national organization based in Nigeria, working to train and enlighten civil society on its role in policymaking, the responsibilities of the legislature, and existing decrees and issues affecting Nigerians, as well as aiming to ensure that the legislature at the local, state, and federal levels is aware of its relationship within the legislature and with other government bodies, its role in policymaking and oversight, and its responsibility in acting as a voice for the people.

Corrections India, a national organization in India, aims to provide prisoners’ children with the highest level of dignity and social acceptance, as well as counsel prisoners and bring them into the mainstream of life.

Equit Institute, an international organization based in Brazil, working in the intersection of gender and development, which sees gender norms and the economic situation of women as deeply interrelated issues that should be urgently addressed altogether.

Foundation for the Future, an international organization based in Jordan, aiming to fulfil the commitments made in the recent declarations on reform and democracy, to mobilize funds from inside and outside the region to assist indigenous initiatives in that context, with regional and international support, and to bring together existing pro-democracy initiatives into a process that links national, regional and international movements for democratization.

Fundaci ón Pais Libre, a national organization in Colombia, working to foster awareness of the consequences of kidnapping, extortion and forced disappearance, the importance of fighting against it, and the study of those crimes, to bring both direct and indirect support to the victims.

The representative of Kyrgyzstan raised the issue that the NGO had supplied its answers in Spanish.  He said that every application, in its entirety, should only be submitted in the “two working languages of the UN – English and French”.

The Committee Chair clarified that, up until now, while it clearly stated that the application needed to be in English or French, additional questions posed by the Committee were sent as a letter in English, with no language specifications.  However, after conferring with the NGO branch, it had been decided that all queries sent to NGO candidates would now specify that replies must be in one of the two working languages.

The representative of Peru noted that NGOs should have been told right away that their answers needed to be in one of the two working languages.  As it stood now, an entire year was wasted because there was not now enough time to review those applications that were unable to be considered, owing to language issues.

The Chair clarified that, from now on, NGOs would be told that all their answers needed to be in one of the two working languages of the Secretariat.

The representatives of Morocco and Kyrgyzstan agreed that language requirements should be specified to the NGOs for all correspondence, and said the current NGO should still be recommended.

The Committee then decided to recommend special consultative status for the organization.

Gibh Varta Manch, a national organization based in India that aims to uplift and help members of society realize their dreams in a positive manner, and to support the progress of society as a whole.

Ilngwesi Afya Program, a national organization based in Kenya, created to respond to the growing awareness of the overwhelming threat of HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and Malaria.

The Committee recommended that review of the following applications be postponed, pending replies to previous or additional questions posed:

Global Life Focus Network, a national Canadian organization, working to help children from around the world to grow in a healthy environment by spiritually, physically, economically, and socially restoring the family.

Kosmos Associates, Inc., a United States-based organization that aims to build the new global civilization and world community through raising individual consciousness, dialogue among civilizations for understanding different world views, individual and group action to reform the United Nations and to build political, economic and civil systems that meet the needs of a globalized world.

The representative of Pakistan asked for further clarification about whether the NGO’s affiliates already had Economic and Social Council status, and to provide details about any partners already participating in that way, as well as what the NGO meant by stating that it was now an independent organization seeking to continue its work at the United Nations under its own non-profit tax-exempt status.

National Committee for UNIFEM in Finland is a national organization that supports the work and goals of the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM), and promotes both the empowerment of women and gender equality.

The representative of Pakistan noted that the name of the NGO had changed as of January 2011 to “UN Women — National Committee Finland”, so he asked about the procedure on that account and whether the Committee would be granting status to the organization with the old name, or whether it had to apply with the new name.

The Committee Chair stated that, if the Committee members agreed, they could grant status to the organization with the old name and, then, have the NGO apply for a change of name for the NGO.  He noted that, while there had been a name change, it was not a voluntary change by the NGO, but, rather, reflected a change in name and structure of the United Nations body, which the NGO wished to represent.

However, various Committee members, including the representatives of Pakistan and Morocco, responded that they needed to consider the precedent of giving status to an organization with a name that no longer existed.  Additionally, the representatives of both India and Bulgaria asked for further clarification about whether the NGO had been required to sign a formal agreement with UN Women to continue cooperation in the future.

The Committee Chair, finally, summarized the Committee’s decision to ask the NGO to send an application with its new name by Monday or Tuesday of next week, as well as clarification of its relationship with UN Women.  As soon as the Committee received that information, it could move to grant that NGO consultative status by the end of the current session.

Search for Common Ground, a United States-based international organization, working to transform the way the world deals with conflict, and promote local partners to find culturally appropriate means to strengthen societies' capacity to deal with conflicts constructively, understand differences and act on commonalities.

The representative of Kyrgyzstan noted that, within a list of countries in which the NGO worked, it had cited “ Jerusalem” as a country, and “ Jerusalem” also appeared listed several times in the financial breakdown as a country.  He asked the NGO to clarify what was meant by that.

Morocco’s representative asked for further explanation of one of the NGO’s answers, wherein it said that the organization was made up of 300 members, and Morocco was cited among countries listed for proposed projects.  Would those projects take place through civil society, through Government institutions, or both?  The delegate asked.

Sisterhood Agenda, a United States-based international organization that creates and implements activities for women and girls, with special emphasis on females of African descent, addressing the social, health, economic and cultural issues of this historically at-risk — and traditionally underserved — target population.

Somali Community Access Network, a United States-based international organization that aims to change people's lives for the better through culturally competent services and resources, which promote health, safety and productivity for each client served.

Sudanese Mothers For Peace is an international organization based in the United Kingdom that aims to:  advance education, relieve poverty and empower women and their families, through the provision of seminars, advice, assistance, representation, counselling, translating and interpreting services in matters, such as immigration, money debts, welfare benefits, health, housing, social security, education, training, and employment; provide facilities of recreation and leisure time occupation in the interests of social welfare, with the aim of improving the conditions of life of those persons for whom the facilities are provided; and to promote human rights throughout the world and work towards rapid and full implementation of United Nations Security Council resolution 1325 (2000) on women, peace and security.

Sudan’s representative said the NGO had twice submitted late replies to the Committee’s questions, and for that reason, Sudan’s delegation and its capital had not been supplied with sufficient time to properly review the application.  He also asked a number of other questions, including how work was conducted in Sudan, if the NGO was based in London.  He asked whether the NGO had a local office in Sudan, worked with a local representative, partnered with other organizations, or a combination of those.  If there was a local office, he wanted to know whether there was coordination between that local office and the London headquarters.

Noting that the NGO’s budget was very small, at only $8,000, which came from its members, he asked whether its dues-paying members were inside Sudan or not.  Further, he asked what, if any, relationship the NGO maintained with the International Criminal Court.

The representative of Venezuela said that since the NGO was based in the United Kingdom, but seemed to carry out work in Sudan, she, too, was drawn to the NGO’s small budget and asked for an update on its financial status, as well as an explanation of how it managed to conduct all its stated tasks on another continent with such a small budget.

The Fishermen, a United States-based international organization, created to educate and provide health care to orphaned children around the world, placing emphasis on caring for orphaned children with special needs.

While the representative of Venezuela said her delegation was prepared to grant the NGO consultative status, the representative of Pakistan asked for information about the studies that the NGO said it had done in Pakistan, as well as about its studies in other countries, namely whether the NGO was carrying them out through a partnership with organizations on the ground and who those partners were, or whether they were collecting information from the websites of NGOs and governmental organizations.

Training for Women Network, a national organization based in Ireland, working to advance, promote, develop and coordinate provision of accessible, high-quality, vocational and pre-vocational education and training for women in Northern Ireland, leading to sustainable employment.

The representative of Pakistan asked for further clarification about the organization’s framework and for a copy of the charter, if it had not already been received.

Asian Eurasian Human Rights Forum, an international organization based in India, works to help create a special climate of solidarity and responsibility, and to identify the obstacles that come in the way of the promotion and protection of human rights.

Business and Professional Women Voluntary Organization — Sudan is an international organization based in Sudan that aims to empower women to rise out of poverty and ensure that women have a voice in policies that affect them and their families.  The organization assists women to enter and re-enter the workforce, and to start up and advance their business or profession.

The representative of Sudan asked for more time to consider the NGO.

All India Christian Council, a national India-based organization, created to proactively protect and serve the interests of the Christian community, minorities and individuals belonging to oppressed castes.

The representative of China noted that NGO’s website lists Tibet and Taiwan as country names, so her delegation asked that the organization correct it to list Tibet as an autonomous region of China, and Taiwan as a province of China.  Also, because the NGO had stated that most groups had not been able to pay membership fees and had been granted scholarships, the representative sought clarification about the NGO’s policy of membership fees and criteria for granting scholarships.

Asia Indigenous Peoples Pact, a national organization based in Thailand, working to strengthen cooperation and solidarity among indigenous peoples across Asia, to promote the rights of indigenous people in general, and, in particular, to protect and revitalize indigenous systems and institutions, and their control over their ancestral homelands, development and future.

The representative of China asked for further information about the project that the NGO said it was conducting in that country, in connection with the answer that it had provided about it policy advocacy activities.

Caribbean Electric Utility Services Corporation, an international organization based in Saint Lucia, is the regional association of electric utilities in the Caribbean region, facilitating the development of world-class electric energy services for all peoples of the Caribbean, providing industry-specific services to enhance the capacity of its members, creating regular networking opportunities, and advocating for the industry, supporting mutual assistance programmes and coordinating knowledge-sharing activities.

Cat ólicas por el Derecho a Decidir C órdoba, a national organization based in Argentina that fosters discussion and action on issues, such as reproductive rights, sexuality, health and citizenship of women, and their relations with religious elements.

The representative of China asked for more information about the organization’s stated participation and specific work in the follow-up to international conferences in Cairo and Beijing.

Centre for Human Rights, a national organization based in South Africa, aims to be a world-class academic institution, focusing on research, teaching and advocacy in the field of human rights law in Africa.

The representative of China asked for information about how the NGO, which receives funds from many countries, maintains its independence from Governments.

Chamber of Computer Logistics People Worldwide, an international organization based in India, promotes the need for higher education for youth and educates underprivileged and needy youth to help build a world in which every young person can access higher education at an affordable price.

The representative of Pakistan requested a better explanation than the NGO had provided in its answers with regard to its use of the term “ambassador”, including whether the noted ambassadors represented countries or whether it was possible to refer to them as representatives of the organization.

Creating Resources for Empowerment in Action, an international women’s human rights organization based in India, that empowers women to articulate, demand and access their human rights by enhancing women’s leadership, and focuses on issues of sexuality, sexual and reproductive rights, violence against women, human rights and social justice.

The representative of Pakistan asked for clarification on what the NGO meant when it used the term “sexual rights”, given that sexual rights was not a recognized term in the human rights discourse.  He also sought clarification about the organization’s stated anti-sodomy and anti-trafficking goals, given that its aim of eliminating censorship and trafficking seemed very broad and needed to be put into perspective.

The representative of Morocco requested further information about the NGO’s statement that it had been advocating for gender rights within the United Nations Human Rights Council, and whether its role had been to encourage participation by other NGOs in the Council, specifically regarding sexual orientation and identity.

Fundaci ón Argentina a las Naciones Camino a la Verdad, a national organization in Argentina that defends and spreads the principles of the United Nations Charter regarding the fundamental rights of humankind and the dignity and value of every human being.  Among its activities, the organization contributes to the creation of educational and research entities at every level of teaching, promotes the granting of scholarships through donations, as well as the development of housing estates and dignified housing, and defends the environment and the ecosystem through the promotion of concrete actions aimed at avoiding environmental degradation.

The representative of Peru said that his delegation had spoken out in past sessions about the significant confusion in the NGO’s application and, even after receiving answers to the questions, he still failed to understand the NGO’s purpose.  So, he requested that the NGO, once again, provide a better explanation regarding its objectives and how it might contribute to the Economic and Social Council.

Pointing to documents submitted by the NGO in Spanish, the representative of Morocco, then, reiterated the question of whether NGOs were allowed to submit materials in a language that was not one of the working languages of the United Nations, namely, English or French.

The Chair of the NGO Branch, Andrei Abramov, said that, sometimes, they had to upload documents that were received in a language other than one of the working languages, in an effort to parse out the replies from an NGO.  Otherwise, the Committee might not get any answers at all.

The Committee Chair said that the questions would be transmitted to the NGO and that that NGO would be asked to provide documents in one of the United Nations working languages.

Fundaci ón Mamonal, a national organization in Colombia that promotes social development in the communities located around the Mamonal Industrial Park and in the city of Cartagena, in harmony with the corporate needs and social responsibility.

The representative of Kyrgzystan said that he could not read the answers on the application because half of the page was scored out, while the representative of Venezuela said that it was hard to understand the answers that were provided by the NGO.

Gender Links, a national organization based in South Africa, working to promote gender equality in and through the media and in all areas of governance, to develop policies and conduct effective campaigns for ending gender violence, and building the capacity of women and men to engage critically in democratic processes that advance equality and justice.

The representative of China asked for a list of the organization’s member NGOs, and also asked it to correct its website’s terminology regarding Hong Kong and China, as Hong Kong was not a country, but rather a special administrative region.

The representative of Morocco commented that the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) was now UN-Women and that the NGO should make the necessary corrections to its application.

Human Rights Association for Community Development in Assiut, a national organization based in Egypt, created to enhance and protect human rights, promote leadership, present cases of human rights to the Government, and to ensure harmony between the legislation, national practices and international human rights agreements.

Sudan’s representative said the organization stated that it carried out activities in southern Egypt.  He asked if it was registered in Egypt, and if it worked with organizations based in Egypt or the broader African region.  Noting that the NGO worked internationally and attended conferences, he also asked how it was that it participated in conferences without yet having consultative status.

Indira Gandhi National Foundation, an international organization based in India, working to support the welfare of the State and the betterment of underprivileged groups, including women and the rural poor, to promote education, income generation programmes, and employment opportunities.

Pakistan’s representative said that the NGO had stated certain things that went against the very nature of an NGO.  The organization had stated, for example, that NGOs were “Government agencies”, which did the work of Governments.  Perhaps the organization could reframe that and other answers so that it was in line with the correct definition of an NGO.  He also suggested that, perhaps, the Secretariat could advise the organization on what, exactly, an NGO was.

The Committee then turned its attention to its traditional question-and-answer session.

Before the Committee was a representative of the NGO, Asia Indigenous Peoples Pact, the status of which had been raised earlier in discussion.

The representative of China asked the NGO representative for further information, in written form, about the organization’s work in China, as well as whether the NGO was currently taking part in the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues.

The NGO representative responded that, in 2007, the NGO had held a conference on political diversity in China, and had also visited a world heritage site there.  Three members of the NGO were participating in the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues presently, reviewing the previous session’s recommendations and agenda items on the implementation of the rights of indigenous issues, as well as emerging issues and the future work of the Forum.

The NGO representative requested that, after his organization sent written replies to the questions, the Committee revisit its application early next week.

The Committee Chair said that the questions would be transmitted to the NGO immediately to facilitate the NGO’s response in the hope that the Committee could soon take up the application again.

Also present was a representative of Defense Small Arms Advisory Council, a United States-based national organization that communicates between its member companies and Government agencies.  It also works with international organizations, such as the United Nations, to see that the legitimate commerce in small arms is both effectively regulated and facilitated.

Requesting answers in writing, the representative of Venezuela asked the NGO representative a series of questions, including about its budget and resources allocated to projects; participation in negotiations on arms trafficking; how it monitors international arms flows; and its organizational goals.

The NGO representative responded that his organization’s budget was small and that it did not have the resources to finance projects.  Most of its expenses concerned travel for members to participate in conferences where small arms were discussed.

Regarding participation in negotiations, he said that the NGO was not an advocacy group, but a technical advisory group that provided advice when asked, which had happened frequently over the past five years.  For example, the NGO had attended meetings on small arms at the United Nations, including of the Preparatory Committee for an arms trade treaty, and on the 2001 Programme of Action to combat the illicit small arms and light weapons trade.

With regard to monitoring weapons for military use, he said that every State had the right to defend itself, with most requiring small arms.  The NGO’s member companies were subjected to intense scrutiny and had to acquire a country’s import approval; they did not export small arms if the recipient country did not state that it could control the weapons.  In the NGO’s view, weapons traded outside the scope of a country’s laws were a concern; every State had a right to regulate military firearms within its borders.

The organization’s goal was to be able to provide credible, objective information to delegations that requested it, the NGO representative said.  As the awareness about arms trafficking had grown, the knowledge of those in the industry should be leveraged.  The organization’s advisory activities were informal, but it was asked to participate as a technical representative because of its background in the global arms trade.

The Committee Chair said that the questions would be transmitted to the NGO, so that it could provide answers in writing.

The Committee then heard from the International Juvenile Justice Observatory, an international organization based in France, working to assist children and youth all over the world are in need of special care when they come into conflict with the law.  One of the recent international efforts of civil society to improve juvenile justice systems on a global scale is the setting up of the International Juvenile Justice Observatory.

The representative of the United States asked if the NGO representative could further elaborate on its collaboration with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

The NGO representative replied that it had been granted operational status with UNESCO in 2009, as part of the NGO coalition partnering with UNESCO, and was working on issues related to violence in schools, among others.

Responding to questions posed by the representative of Venezuela about its activities in Latin America, the NGO representative said it has been planning programmes in the region as part of its worldwide knowledge development programme.  Deciding to work in the region was due in large part to interest from countries and civil society, as evidenced by the Latin American-supported congress on the rights of the child.  It had also opened a branch in Panama, working to enable an exchange of knowledge and fundamental data among professionals, scholars and others on the topic.  The NGO was also working on projects in Paraguay and El Salvador, among others.

Asked by Morocco’s representative about activities carried out in Africa, the NGO representative replied that the organization had a great interest in the situation of children in Africa.  It was working to establish contacts in the region, particularly with universities, but also with local NGOs that could best understand the real situation on the ground.  The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) would be the NGO’s partner in the region, and together, they would be defining its future strategies in Africa.

Sudan’s representative said he was also interested in the NGO’s work in Africa, and Morocco ’s representative said that the NGO was very welcome to carry out activities in Morocco if it so wished.

Asked for further information on its activities in Latin America by Cuba’s representative, particularly why it had chosen that region, the NGO representative said that it was not easy to ensure ongoing effective participation of children and youth.  However, the desire for such participation had been seen in Latin America for many years, a case in point being the setting up of the congress on the rights if the child.

The Committee then recommended that special consultative status be granted.

Turning to Scholars at Risk Network, a United States-based international network of universities and colleges, dedicated to defending threatened scholars and scholarly communities worldwide, the representative of Bulgaria said that the NGO’s work was not common, very important, and merited the Committee’s consideration.

That representative asked if the organization was aware of other NGOs working on the same issues, and in the same capacity, which currently held status with the Economic and Social Council.

The NGO’s representative said the organization did indeed fill a void, as very few specialized in academic freedom.  While it had worked with some organizations with similar goals in the Netherlands and the United Kingdom, it was currently the only NGO applying for Economic and Social Council consultative status working in that field.

China’s representative asked if the NGO was registered in many countries, and, if so, which ones and could the Committee see the registration documents.  She noted that membership with the NGO was open to individuals, as well as to organizations, and she asked that a list of those organizations be made available, as it was currently unable to be viewed online.

The NGO representative said the registration form would be provided before the end of the session.  Responding to a question from the representative of Venezuela, she said that the NGO was seeking consultative status to assist it to gain further information and broaden its reach.

The Chair announced that the NGO’s status decision would be postponed until additional materials were received.

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For information media • not an official record
For information media. Not an official record.