19 September 2012

General Assembly’s First-ever High-Level Meeting on Rule of Law, at Headquarters on 24 September, Will Feature Voluntary Pledging, Side Events

19 September 2012
General Assembly
Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

Background Release

General Assembly’s First-ever High-Level Meeting on Rule of Law, at Headquarters


on 24 September, Will Feature Voluntary Pledging, Side Events


The General Assembly will hold the first-ever High-level Meeting devoted to the rule of law at the national and international levels on 24 September, a day before the general debate opens.

For the Assembly’s consideration is a report of the Secretary-General — “Delivering justice:  programme of action to strengthen the rule of law at the national and international levels” (document A/66/749) — which proposes possible outcomes for the High-level Meeting on the Rule of Law.  The proposals have been under discussion by Member States preparing an outcome document to be adopted at the event.

As decided by the General Assembly, in resolution A/RES/66/102, the Assembly President, the Secretary-General, the President of the International Court of Justice, the President of the Security Council, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, the Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the Executive Director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the Chair of the International Law Commission will be invited to speak, in addition to representatives of Member States, observers and non-governmental organizations.  The Assembly President has finalized the organizational arrangements for the High-level Meeting, including the list of speakers.

The Assembly President has compiled lists of non-governmental organizations in consultative status with the Economic and Social Council, and civil society organizations active in the rule-of-law field and wishing to attend the Meeting.  In addition, he will select a limited number of representatives of non-governmental organizations active in the rule-of-law field to speak at the event.

With a process of voluntary pledging having been opened for Member States, guidance and model pledges are posted and updated on the United Nations Rule of Law website, as well as in the Document Repository (  The submitted pledges have also been posted on the website, and the list will be constantly updated.

A number of side events will be organized on the day of the High-level Meeting and throughout the first week of the sixty-seventh session, from 24‑28 September.  For an updated list of side events, please visit

At the international level, the rule of law accords predictability and legitimacy to the actions of States, strengthens their sovereign equality and underpins their responsibility to all individuals within their respective territories and subject to their respective jurisdictions.  Full implementation of the obligations set forth in the Charter of the United Nations and other international instruments, including the international human rights framework, is central to collective efforts to maintain international peace and security, address emerging threats and close off accountability gaps for international crimes.

At the national level, strong, inclusive and accountable institutions that demonstrate the equitable application of the rule of law are crucial for preventing conflict and consolidating post-conflict peacebuilding gains.  The interconnected threats of organized crime and trafficking, in addition to conflict and terrorism, undermine international security and development, and require effective rule-of-law instruments to address them at the national, regional and global levels.

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