Adopting 68 First Committee Texts, General Assembly Addresses New Threats, Use of Banned Weapons, Urges Drive to Curb Arms Proliferation

GA/11866
5 December 2016
Seventy-first Session, 51st Meeting (PM)

Adopting 68 First Committee Texts, General Assembly Addresses New Threats, Use of Banned Weapons, Urges Drive to Curb Arms Proliferation

Following the recommendation of its First Committee (Disarmament and International Security), the General Assembly today adopted 68 draft resolutions and decisions, among them ones targeting the recent proliferation of banned weapons alongside the development of new and emerging threats.

The General Assembly adopted a draft resolution on the “Implementation of the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons and on Their Destruction” by a recorded vote of 160 in favour to 6 against, with 15 abstentions.  By the terms of that draft, the Assembly condemned in the strongest possible terms the use of chemical weapons and expressed its strong conviction that those individuals responsible for the use of chemical weapons must be held accountable.  The draft resolution also included new language on Syria that stirred divisions among Member States and required separate recorded votes.

Prior to passage of the text as a whole, the Assembly decided to retain preambular paragraphs 3 and 4, with 147 in favour to 8 against, with 17 abstentions, and 145 in favour to 8 against, with 19 abstentions, respectively.  By their terms, preambular paragraph 3 re-emphasized the Assembly’s unequivocal support to continue a fact-finding mission on the alleged use of toxic chemicals in Syria, and preambular paragraph 4 recalled the mission’s determination that a specific incident in Syria had involved or likely involved the use of chemical weapons.

Separate recorded votes saw the retention of operative paragraph 2, which expressed serious concern regarding the findings of chemical weapon use in Syria by the Syrian Arab Armed Forces and Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL/Da’esh) and operative paragraph 13, which underscored both a concern for remaining gaps, inconsistencies and discrepancies that remained with respect to chemical weapons facilities, activities, munitions and chemical materials, concluding that the  Technical Secretariat was unable at present to verify fully the accuracy of Syria’s declaration and related submissions, and the importance of such full verification.  Those paragraphs were retained by a recorded vote of 139 in favour to 12 against, with 20 abstentions, and 143 in favour to 9 against, with 18 abstentions, respectively.

Addressing new and emerging security risks facing Member States, the Assembly, in adopting a resolution on “Developments in the field of information and telecommunications in the context of international security”, by a recorded vote of 181 in favour to none against, with 1 abstention, called on Member States to further promote the consideration of existing and potential threats in the field of information security and possible strategies to address the emerging threats.

Turning to conventional weapons, the Assembly adopted, by a vote of 157 in favour to none against, with 28 abstentions, a draft resolution on “The Arms Trade Treaty”, which welcomed the establishment of the ad hoc working group on implementation, the working groups on transparency and reporting and on universalization as important steps in advancing the Treaty’s objective and purpose.  The Assembly also called upon all States that had not yet done so to ratify, accept, approve or accede to the Treaty, according to their respective constitutional processes.

Taking up the issue of cluster munitions, the Assembly adopted a draft resolution titled “Implementation of the Convention on Cluster Munitions”, by a vote of 141 in favour to 2 against, with 39 abstentions.  In doing so, the Assembly stressed the importance of the Convention’s full implementation and expressed strong concern regarding recent allegations, reports or documented evidence of the use of cluster munitions in different parts of the world.

The Assembly also adopted, without a vote, two annual draft resolutions containing reports on the work of the Conference on Disarmament and on the Disarmament Commission.

The Assembly deferred action on draft resolutions on a “Treaty banning the production of fissile material for nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices” (L.65/Rev.1) and on “Taking forward multilateral negotiations” (L.41), due to budget implications.  By the latter text, the Assembly would decide that the conference to negotiate a legally binding instrument to prohibit nuclear weapons, leading towards their total elimination, would take place in New York from 27 to 31 March and from 15 June to 7 July 2017, with the participation of international organizations and civil society representatives.

Taking further action, it adopted drafts on the maintenance of international security — good‑neighbourliness, stability and development in South-Eastern Europe, conclusion of effective international arrangements to assure non‑nuclear‑weapon States against the use or threat of use of nuclear weapons, prevention of an arms race in outer space, no first placement of weapons in outer space and on The Hague Code of Conduct against Ballistic Missile Proliferation.  It also adopted drafts on the implementation of the Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-personnel Mines and on Their Destruction, preventing and combating illicit brokering activities, reducing nuclear danger, conventional arms control at the regional and subregional levels, transparency in armaments, humanitarian consequences of nuclear weapons, humanitarian pledge for the prohibition and elimination of nuclear weapons, united action with renewed determination towards the total elimination of nuclear weapons and on a nuclear‑weapon‑free southern hemisphere and adjacent areas.

Taking action on a range of issues, it adopted drafts on decreasing the operational readiness of nuclear weapons systems, towards a nuclear‑weapon‑free world, ethical imperatives for a nuclear‑weapon‑free‑world and on women, disarmament, non‑proliferation and arms control.  It also adopted drafts on follow-up to the advisory opinion of the International Court of Justice on the legality of the threat or use of nuclear weapons, measures to uphold the authority of the 1925 Geneva Protocol, promotion of multilateralism in the area of disarmament and non‑proliferation.  Decisions on missiles and on an Open-ended Working Group on the fourth special session of the General Assembly devoted to disarmament were also adopted.

Continuing action on general disarmament issues, it adopted drafts on nuclear disarmament, nuclear disarmament verification, national legislation on transfer of arms, military equipment and dual‑use goods and technology, effects of the use of armaments and ammunitions containing depleted uranium, follow-up to the 2013 high-level meeting of the General Assembly on nuclear disarmament, a convention on the prohibition of the use of nuclear weapons, the risk of nuclear proliferation in the Middle East and the Comprehensive Nuclear‑Test‑Ban Treaty.

Also adopted by the Assembly were draft resolutions and decisions on the African Nuclear‑Weapon‑Free Zone Treaty, Treaty for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons in Latin America and the Caribbean (Treaty of Tlatelolco), establishment of a nuclear‑weapon‑free zone in the region of the Middle East and the role of science and technology in the context of international security and disarmament.  The Assembly adopted drafts on information on confidence‑building measures in the field of conventional arms, measures to prevent terrorists from acquiring weapons of mass destruction, confidence-building measures in the regional and subregional context, regional disarmament, transparency and confidence‑building measures in outer space activities and Mongolia’s international security and nuclear‑weapon‑free status.

In further action, the Assembly adopted drafts on the illicit trade in small arms and light weapons in all its aspects, assistance to States for curbing the illicit traffic in small arms and light weapons and collecting them, disarmament and non-proliferation education, observance of environmental norms in the drafting and implementation of agreements on disarmament and arms control and on the relationship between disarmament and development.  In addition, it adopted drafts on the consolidation of peace through practical disarmament measures, Treaty on a Nuclear‑Weapon‑Free Zone in Central Asia, preventing the acquisition by terrorists of radioactive sources, countering the threat posed by improvised explosive devices and on further measures in the field of disarmament for the prevention of an arms race on the seabed and the ocean floor and in the subsoil thereof.

During the meeting, it adopted drafts on the United Nations disarmament fellowship, training and advisory services, United Nations Disarmament Information Programme and on United Nations regional centres for peace and disarmament in Africa, in Latin America and the Caribbean and in Asia and the Pacific.  It adopted, without a vote, drafts on activities of the United Nations Standing Advisory Committee on Security Questions in Central Africa and on United Nations regional centres for peace and disarmament.  Included in the action was the adoption of drafts on the Convention on Prohibitions or Restrictions on the Use of Certain Conventional Weapons Which May Be Deemed to Be Excessively Injurious or to Have Indiscriminate Effects, strengthening of security and cooperation in the Mediterranean region and the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production and Stockpiling of Bacteriological (Biological) and Toxin Weapons and on Their Destruction.

Speaking during the meeting were representatives of Lebanon, Pakistan, Egypt, Venezuela and Nicaragua.

In other business, the Assembly took up a report of its Fifth Committee (Administrative and Budgetary) titled “Human Resources Management” (document A/71/638), adopting, without a vote, a related draft resolution on implementation of the new common system compensation package in the United Nations Secretariat.

The General Assembly will meet again at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, 6 December, to take up its agenda item on sport for development and peace and on the investigation into the conditions and circumstances resulting in the tragic death of Dag Hammarskjöld and of the members of the party accompanying him.

Action on Draft Resolutions

DARREN HANSEN (Australia), Committee Rapporteur, introduced the reports of the First Committee (Disarmament and International Security), saying that during the action phase, the Committee adopted 68 draft resolutions and decisions, 33 of which were adopted by recorded vote.  He recalled the high level of cooperation during the Committee’s session and expressed appreciation to all delegations for their constructive participation.

The Assembly first took up the report “Reduction of military budgets” (document A/71/441), which contained no draft resolutions or decisions.

The Assembly then took up the report “African Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone Treaty” (document A/71/442), containing an eponymous draft resolution (document A/C.1/71/L.49).  Acting without a vote, it adopted that text, which recalled with satisfaction the entry into force of the Treaty of Pelindaba on 15 July 2009.  It called upon nuclear-weapon States that had not signed the Protocols to the Treaty to do so as soon as possible.

The Assembly then took up the report “Consolidation of the regime established by the Treaty for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons in Latin America and the Caribbean (Treaty of Tlatelolco)” (document A/71/443), containing a draft resolution titled “Treaty for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons in Latin America and the Caribbean (Treaty of Tlatelolco)” (document A/C.1/71/L.34/Rev.1).  Acting without a vote, it adopted that text, which welcomed that the Treaty was in force for all sovereign States of the region.  The Assembly encouraged once again States parties to the Additional Protocols I and II to the Treaty to review their interpretative declarations, reaffirming and recognizing the legitimate interests of the States that comprised the nuclear-weapon-free zone in Latin America and the Caribbean in receiving full and unequivocal security assurances from the nuclear-weapon States.

Turning to the report “Maintenance of international security — good-neighbourliness, stability and development in South-Eastern Europe” (document A/71/444), the Assembly adopted, without a vote, an eponymous draft decision (document A/C.1/71/L.69) contained therein, which decided to include that topic in the provisional agenda of the Assembly’s seventy‑third session.

The Assembly then took up the report on “Developments in the field of information and telecommunications in the context of international security” (document A/71/445), containing an eponymous draft resolution (document A/C.1/71/L.17).  The Assembly adopted that draft by a recorded vote of 181 in favour to none against, with 1 abstention (Ukraine).

By doing so, the Assembly called on Member States to, among other things, be guided in their use of information and communications technologies by the 2015 report of the Group of Governmental Experts on Developments in the Field of Information and Telecommunications in the Context of International Security and to promote further, at multilateral levels, the consideration of existing and potential threats in the field of information security and possible strategies to address the emerging threats, consistent with the need to preserve the free flow of information.

The Assembly then turned to the report “Establishment of a nuclear-weapon-free zone in the region of the Middle East” (document A/71/446), containing an eponymous draft resolution (document A/C.1/71/L.1).

Acting without a vote, the Assembly adopted that draft, by which it urged all parties directly concerned seriously to consider taking the practical and urgent steps required for the implementation of the proposal to establish such a zone in accordance with relevant Assembly resolutions and invite the countries concerned to adhere to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons.

Next, the Assembly turned to the report “Conclusion of effective international arrangements to assure non-nuclear-weapon States against the use or threat of use of nuclear weapons” (document A/71/447), containing an eponymous draft resolution (document A/C.1/71/L.13).

By a recorded vote of 128 in favour to none against, with 57 abstentions, the Assembly adopted that text, which appealed to all States, especially those possessing nuclear weapons, to work towards an early agreement on a common approach and formula that could be included in an international legally‑binding instrument.  Also by the terms of the draft, the Assembly recommended that further intensive efforts be devoted to the search for such a common approach or formula and that the various alternative approaches, including those considered in the Conference on Disarmament, be further explored.

Next, the Assembly took up the report “Prevention of an arms race in outer space” (document A/71/448), which contained two draft resolutions.  The Assembly first adopted, by a recorded vote of 182 in favour to none against, with 4 abstentions (Israel, Palau, South Sudan, United States), draft resolution I on “Prevention of an arms race in outer space” (document A/C.1/71/L.3), which called upon all States to contribute actively to the objective of the peaceful use of and prevention of an arms race in outer space and to refrain from actions contrary to that objective.

It then adopted draft resolution II on “No first placement of weapons in outer space” (document A/C.1/71/L.18), by which the Assembly reiterated that the Conference on Disarmament had the primary role in the negotiation of a multilateral agreement, or agreements, on the prevention of an arms race in outer space in all its aspects.  It also urged an early commencement of substantive work based on the updated draft treaty on the prevention of the placement of weapons in outer space and of the threat or use of force against outer space objects introduced by China and the Russian Federation at the Conference on Disarmament in 2008.  That draft was adopted by a recorded vote of 130 in favour to 4 against (Georgia, Israel, Ukraine, United States), with 48 abstentions.

The Assembly next turned to the report “Role of science and technology in the context of international security and disarmament” (document A/71/449), adopting, without a vote, a related draft decision (document A/C.1/71/L.54).

The Assembly then took up the report “General and complete disarmament” (document A/41/450), containing 42 draft resolutions and 3 draft decisions.

The Assembly adopted draft resolution I titled “The Hague Code of Conduct against Ballistic Missile Proliferation” (document A/C.1/71/L.5) by a recorded vote of 166 in favour to 1 against (Iran), with 16 abstentions.  By that text, the Assembly invited all States that had not yet subscribed to the Code of Conduct to do so, bearing in mind the right to use space for peaceful purposes.  It also encouraged the exploration of further ways and means to deal effectively with the problem of the proliferation of ballistic missiles capable of delivering weapons of mass destruction, to take the measures necessary to avoid contributing to such delivery systems and to continue to deepen the relationship between the Code of Conduct and the United Nations.

By a recorded vote of 164 in favour to none against, with 20 abstentions, the Assembly adopted draft resolution II titled “Implementation of the Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti‑personnel Mines and on Their Destruction (document A/C.1/71/L.7/Rev.1), which invited all States that have not signed the Convention to accede to it without delay.  By the terms of the text, the Assembly stressed the importance of full and effective implementation of and compliance with the Convention, including through the continued implementation of the action plan for 2014 to 2019.  The Assembly renewed its call upon all States and other relevant parties to work together to promote, support and advance the care, rehabilitation and social and economic reintegration of mine victims, mine risk education programmes and the removal and destruction of anti-personnel mines placed or stockpiled throughout the world.

Acting without a vote, the Assembly adopted draft resolution III titled “Information on confidence-building measures in the field of conventional arms” (document A/C.1/71/L.8), which encouraged Member States to continue to adopt and apply confidence-building measures in the field of conventional arms and to provide information in that regard.  By that text, the Assembly welcomed the establishment and continuing operation of the database containing information provided by Member States, and requested the Secretary-General to keep the database updated and to assist Member States, at their request, in the organization of seminars, courses and workshops aimed at enhancing the knowledge of new developments in that field.

Next, the Assembly took action on draft resolution IV titled “Preventing and combating illicit brokering activities” (document A/C.1/71/L.9).  The Assembly first decided to retain, by a recorded vote of 167 in favour to 1 against (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea), with 12 abstentions, preambular paragraph 8, which recognized the importance of States parties to the Arms Trade Treaty taking measures, pursuant to their national laws, to regulate brokering taking place under their jurisdiction, in accordance with Article 10 of that Treaty.

Adopting that draft as a whole by a vote of 184 in favour to 1 against (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea), with 1 abstention (Iran), the Assembly called upon Member States to establish appropriate national laws and/or measures to prevent and combat the illicit brokering of conventional arms and materials, equipment and technology that could contribute to the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their means of delivery, in a manner consistent with international law.

By a recorded vote of 126 in favour to 49 against, with 10 abstentions (Argentina, Armenia, Belarus, China, Georgia, Japan, Marshall Islands, Russian Federation, Serbia, Uzbekistan), the Assembly adopted draft resolution V titled “Reducing nuclear danger” (document A/C.1/71/L.11).  By the terms of that text, the Assembly called for a review of nuclear doctrines and, in that context, immediate and urgent steps to reduce the risks of unintentional and accidental use of nuclear weapons, including through de-alerting and de‑targeting nuclear weapons.  It also requested the five nuclear‑weapon States (China, France, Russian Federation, United Kingdom, United States) to take measures to do so.

Next, the Assembly adopted, without a vote, draft resolution VI titled “Measures to prevent terrorists from acquiring weapons of mass destruction” (document A/C.1/71/L.12), which urged all Member States to take and strengthen national measures, as appropriate, to prevent terrorists from acquiring weapons of mass destruction, their means of delivery and materials and technologies related to their manufacture.  By the terms of that text, the Assembly encouraged cooperation among and between Member States and relevant regional and international organizations for strengthening national capacities in that regard.

Also acting without a vote, it adopted draft resolution VII titled “Confidence-building measures in the regional and subregional context” (document A/C.1/71/L.14).  By that text, the Assembly called upon Member States to refrain from the use or threat of use of force in accordance with the purposes and principles of the United Nations Charter.  It also reaffirmed the ways and means regarding confidence‑ and security‑building measures that had been set out in the report of the Disarmament Commission on its 1993 session and called upon Member States to pursue those ways and means through sustained consultations and dialogue, while at the same time avoiding actions that may hinder or impair such a dialogue.

Again without a vote, it adopted draft resolution VIII titled “Regional disarmament” (document A/C.1/71/L.15).  By the terms of that text, the Assembly called upon States to conclude agreements, wherever possible, for nuclear non‑proliferation, disarmament and confidence-building measures at the regional and subregional levels.  It also stressed that sustained efforts were needed, within the Conference on Disarmament framework and under the umbrella of the United Nations, to make progress on the entire range of disarmament issues and affirm that global and regional approaches to disarmament complemented each other and should therefore be pursued simultaneously to promote regional and international peace and security.

The Assembly then turned to draft resolution IX titled “Conventional arms control at the regional and subregional levels” (document A/C.1/71/L.16), first deciding, by recorded vote, to retain two paragraphs of that text.

The Assembly decided, by a vote of 173 in favour to 1 against(India), with 3 abstentions (Bhutan, Russian Federation, South Sudan), to retain preambular paragraph 6, which noted with particular interest the initiatives taken regarding the promotion of agreements to strengthen regional peace and security at the lowest possible level of armaments and military forces in different regions of the world and recognized the relevance and value of the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe, which was a cornerstone of European security.

It decided to retain operative paragraph 2 by a vote of 139 in favour to 1 against (India), with 37 abstentions.  By that paragraph, the Assembly requested the Conference on Disarmament to consider the formulation of principles that could serve as a framework for regional agreements on conventional arms control and looked forward to a report of the Conference on the subject.

Then, by a vote of 183 in favour to 1 against (India), with 3 abstentions (Bhutan, Russian Federation, South Sudan), the Assembly adopted the draft resolution as a whole.  By its terms, the Assembly decided to give urgent consideration to the issues involved in conventional arms control at the regional and subregional levels.

Acting without a vote, the Assembly adopted draft resolution X titled “Transparency and confidence-building measures in outer space activities” (document A/C.1/71/L.19), which called upon Member States and relevant United Nations system entities and organizations to support the implementation of the full range of conclusions and recommendations contained in the report of the Group of Governmental Experts on Transparency and Confidence-building Measures in Outer Space Activities.  It also encouraged Member States to continue to review and implement the proposed transparency and confidence-building measures contained in the report, through relevant national mechanisms, on a voluntary basis and in a manner consistent with their national interests.

Also acting without a vote, the Assembly adopted draft resolution XI titled “Mongolia’s international security and nuclear-weapons-free status” (document A/C.1/71/L.20).  By the text, the Assembly invited Member States to continue to cooperate with Mongolia in taking the measures to consolidate and strengthen its independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity, the inviolability of its borders, its independent foreign policy, economic security, ecological balance and nuclear‑weapon‑free status.  By that text, the Assembly appealed to the Member States of the Asia-Pacific Region to support Mongolia’s efforts to join the relevant regional security and economic arrangements.

The Assembly then turned to draft resolution XII titled “Transparency in armaments” (document A/C.1/71/L.21), taking separate recorded votes on seven paragraphs of that text.

The Assembly, by a vote of 150 in favour to none against, with 25 abstentions, decided to retain preambular paragraph 4, which welcomed the consolidated reports of the Secretary-General on the Register, which included the returns of Member States for 2012, 2013 and 2014.

It decided to retain, by a vote of 141 in favour to none against, with 35 abstentions, preambular paragraph 7, which welcomed the Arms Trade Treaty’s adoption and entry into force and noted that the Treaty remained open for accession by any State that had not signed it.

The Assembly decided, by a vote of 141 in favour to none against, with 36 abstentions, to retain preambular paragraph 8, which welcomed the increase in transparency in armaments that the Arms Trade Treaty provided.

With 147 in favour to none against, with 29 abstentions, it voted to retain operative paragraph 3, which decided to adapt the scope of the Register in conformity with recommendations contained in the Secretary-General’s 2016 report.

The Assembly decided to retain operative paragraph 4, by a vote of 148 in favour to none against, with 27 abstentions, which called upon Member States, with a view to achieving universal participation, to provide the Secretary-General, by 31 May annually, with the requested data and information for the Register.

By a vote of 152 in favour to none against, with 25 abstentions, the Assembly decided to retain operative paragraph 6c, which reaffirmed its decision to keep the scope of and participation in the Register under review, request the Secretary‑General to continue to assist Member States to build capacity to submit meaningful reports, and encourage States in a position to do so to provide assistance for that purpose upon request.

The Assembly, by a vote of 149 in favour to none against, with 26 abstentions, decided to retain operative paragraph 7, which requested the Secretary-General to implement recommendations contained in his 2000, 2003, 2006, 2009, 2013 and 2016 reports on the continuing operation of the Register and its further development and to ensure that sufficient resources were made available for the Secretariat to operate and maintain the Register.

The Assembly then, by a vote of 156 in favour to none against, with 29 abstentions, adopted draft resolution XII as a whole, which reaffirmed its determination to ensure the effective operation of the United Nations Register of Conventional Arms and decided to adapt its scope in conformity with the recommendations contained in the 2016 report of the Secretary-General.  By the terms of the text, the Assembly reaffirmed its decision to keep the scope of and participation in the Register under review and request the Secretary-General, with the assistance of a group of governmental experts to be convened in 2019 within existing resources, to prepare a report on the Register’s continuing operation, relevance and further development, taking into account the work of the Conference on Disarmament, relevant deliberations within the United Nations, the views expressed by Member States and the reports of the Secretary-General.

The Assembly then adopted draft resolution XIII titled “Implementation of the Convention on Cluster Munitions” (document A/C.1/71/L.22), by a vote of 141 in favour to 2 against (Russian Federation, Zimbabwe) with 39 abstentions.  In doing so, it stressed the importance of the full implementation of and compliance with the Convention and expressed strong concern regarding recent allegations, reports or documented evidence of the use of cluster munitions in different parts of the world.  The Assembly urged all States parties to provide the Secretary-General with complete and timely information as required under Article 7 of the Convention in order to promote transparency and compliance with the Convention.

By a vote of 144 in favour to 16 against, with 24 abstentions, the Assembly adopted draft resolution XIV titled “Humanitarian consequences of nuclear weapons” (document A/C.1/71/L.23), which stressed that it was in the interest of the very survival of humanity that nuclear weapons never be used again, under any circumstances.  The Assembly also, by the text, called upon all States, in their shared responsibility, to prevent the use of nuclear weapons, to prevent their vertical and horizontal proliferation and to achieve nuclear disarmament.

It then adopted, by a vote of 137 in favour to 34 against, with 12 abstentions, draft resolution XV titled “Humanitarian pledge for the prohibition and elimination of nuclear weapons” (document A/C.1/71/L.24), which stressed the importance of having fact-based discussions and presenting findings and evidence on the humanitarian impact of nuclear weapons in all relevant forums and within the United Nations framework, as they should be at the centre of all deliberations and the implementation of obligations and commitments with regard to nuclear disarmament.

Acting without a vote, the Assembly then adopted draft resolution XVI titled “The illicit trade in small arms and light weapons in all its aspects” (document A/C.1/71/L.25), which called on States to implement the International Instrument to Enable States to Identify and Trace, in a Timely and Reliable Manner, Illicit Small Arms and Light Weapons.

It then turned to draft resolution XVII titled “United action with renewed determination towards the total elimination of nuclear weapons” (document A/C.1/71/L.26), with separate recorded votes on three operative paragraphs.

The Assembly, by a vote of 173 in favour to 3 against (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Israel, India), with 5 abstentions (Bhutan, Namibia, Pakistan, South Sudan, Zimbabwe), decided to retain operative paragraph 5, which called on States not parties to the Non-Proliferation Treaty to accede as non-nuclear-weapon States promptly and without any conditions to achieve its universality and, pending their accession to it, to adhere to its terms and take practical steps to support it.

By a vote of 167 in favour to 4 against (China, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Pakistan, Russian Federation), with 8 abstentions (France, India, Iran, Israel, Namibia, South Sudan, United Kingdom, Zimbabwe), it decided to retain operative paragraph 20, which urged all States concerned to immediately commence negotiations on a treaty banning the production of fissile material for nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices and its early conclusion and to declare and maintain moratoriums on the production of such material pending the entry into force of the treaty.

The Assembly, with 170 in favour to none against, with 10 abstentions (Argentina, Brazil, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Egypt, India, Israel, Namibia, Pakistan, South Sudan, Zimbabwe), decided to retain operative paragraph 27, which stressed the fundamental role of the International Atomic Energy Agency safeguards and the importance of the universalization of the comprehensive safeguards agreements and, while noting that it was any State’s sovereign decision to conclude an additional protocol, strongly encouraged all States that had not done so to conclude and bring into force as soon as possible an additional protocol based on the Model Additional Protocol to the Agreement(s) between States and IAEA for the Application of Safeguards.

Voting on the draft resolution as a whole, with 167 in favour to 4 against (China, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, Syria), with 16 abstentions, the Assembly adopted the text, which renewed the determination of all States to take united action towards the total elimination of nuclear weapons, with a view to achieving a safer world for all and a peaceful and secure world free of nuclear weapons.

The Assembly then adopted, by a vote of 157 in favour to none against, with 28 abstentions, draft resolution XVIII titled “The Arms Trade Treaty” (document A/C.1/71/L.29), which welcomed the decisions taken at the Second Conference of States Parties and noted that the Third Conference of States Parties would be held in Geneva from 11 to 15 September 2017.  It also welcomed the establishment of the ad hoc working group on implementation, the working groups on transparency and reporting and on universalization as important steps in advancing the Treaty’s objective and purpose.

Turning to draft resolution XIX titled “Nuclear-weapon-free southern hemisphere and adjacent areas” (document A/C.1/71/L.31), the Assembly adopted the text by a vote of 179 in favour to 4 against (France, Russian Federation, United Kingdom, United States), with 1 abstention (Israel).  By doing so, the Assembly reaffirmed its conviction of the important role of nuclear-weapon-free zones in strengthening the nuclear non-proliferation regime and in extending the areas of the world that were nuclear-weapon-free and called for greater progress towards the total elimination of all nuclear weapons.

Without a vote, the Assembly adopted draft resolution XX titled “Assistance to States for curbing the illicit traffic in small arms and light weapons and collecting them” (document A/C.1/71/L.32).  By the text, the Assembly commended the United Nations and international, regional and other organizations for their assistance to States for curbing the illicit traffic in small arms and light weapons and collecting them.

Next, the Assembly took up draft resolution XXI titled “Decreasing the operational readiness of nuclear weapons systems” (document A/C.1/71/L.33), taking action first on preambular paragraph 8, which recalled the adoption of conclusions and recommendations for follow-on actions by the 2010 Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference, including commitments of nuclear-weapon States to promptly engage with a view to considering the legitimate interest of non-nuclear-weapon States in further reducing the operational status of nuclear weapons systems in ways that promoted international stability and security.  By a vote of 168 in favour to none against, with 11 abstentions, the Assembly decided to retain that paragraph.

It then adopted the draft resolution as a whole, by a vote of 175 in favour to 4 against (France, Russian Federation, United Kingdom, United States), with 5 abstentions (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Israel, Lithuania, Republic of Korea, South Sudan).  By that draft, the Assembly called for further practical steps to be taken to decrease the operational readiness of nuclear weapons systems, with a view to ensuring that all nuclear weapons were removed from high alert status.

The Assembly then took up draft resolution XXII titled “Towards a nuclear‑weapon‑free world: accelerating the implementation of nuclear disarmament commitments” (document A/C.1/71/L.35), voting to retain operative paragraph 14, by a vote of 168 in favour to 6 against (Germany, India, Israel, Pakistan, Russian Federation, United States), with 3 abstentions (Bhutan, France, United Kingdom), which called on all States parties to spare no effort to achieve the universality of the Non-Proliferation Treaty and urged India, Israel and Pakistan to accede to the Treaty as non-nuclear-weapon States promptly and without conditions and to place all their nuclear facilities under IAEA safeguards.

It then adopted the draft resolution as a whole, by a vote of 137 in favour to 25 against, with 19 abstentions.  The Assembly, by the draft, called upon the nuclear-weapon States to fulfil their commitment to undertaking further efforts to reduce and ultimately eliminate all types of nuclear weapons, deployed and non-deployed, including through unilateral, bilateral, regional and multilateral measures.

The Assembly then adopted, by a vote of 130 in favour to 37 against, with 15 abstentions, draft resolution XXIII titled “Ethical imperatives for a nuclear-weapons-free-world” (document A/C.1/71/L.36), which called on all States to acknowledge the catastrophic humanitarian consequences and risks posed by a nuclear weapon detonation, whether by accident, miscalculation or design.

Next, the Assembly took up a draft resolution XXIV titled “Women, disarmament, non-proliferation and arms control” (document A/C.1/71/L.37).  The Assembly first decided, by a vote of 151 in favour to none against, with 25 abstentions, to retain preambular paragraph 10, which recalled the Arms Trade Treaty’s entry into force and encouraged States parties to fully implement all of the Treaty’s provisions, including the provisions on serious acts of gender-based violence and on violence against children.

It then adopted the draft resolution as a whole without a vote.  By that text, the Assembly urged Member States, relevant subregional and regional organizations, the United Nations and the specialized agencies to promote equal opportunities for the representation of women in all decision-making processes with regard to matters related to disarmament, non-proliferation and arms control, in particular as it related to the prevention and reduction of armed violence and armed conflict.

Acting without a vote, it adopted draft resolution XXV titled “Disarmament and non-proliferation education” (document A/C.1/71/L.40), which requested the Secretary-General to prepare a report reviewing the results of the implementation of the recommendations and possible new opportunities for promoting disarmament and non-proliferation education and to submit it to the General Assembly at its seventy-third session.

The Assembly then postponed the vote on draft resolution XXVI titled “Taking forward multilateral nuclear disarmament negotiations” (document A/C.1/71/L.41) to a later date to review programme budget implications.  By that text, the Assembly would reiterate that the universal objective of taking forward multilateral nuclear disarmament negotiations remains the achievement and maintenance of a world without nuclear weapons and emphasized the importance of addressing issues related to nuclear weapons in a comprehensive, inclusive, interactive and constructive manner, for the advancement of multilateral nuclear disarmament negotiations.

Adopting draft resolution XXVII titled “Follow-up to the advisory opinion of the International Court of Justice on the legality of the threat or use of nuclear weapons” (document A/C.1/71/L.42), by a vote of 136 in favour to 25 against, with 22 abstentions, the Assembly called once again upon all States immediately to fulfil that obligation by commencing multilateral negotiations leading to an early conclusion of a nuclear weapons convention prohibiting the development, production, testing, deployment, stockpiling, transfer, threat or use of nuclear weapons and providing for their elimination.

By a recorded vote of 181 in favour to none against, with 2 abstentions (Israel, United States), the Assembly adopted draft resolution XXVIII titled “Measures to uphold the authority of the 1925 Geneva Protocol” (document A/C.1/71/L.43), which renewed its previous call to all States to observe strictly the principles and objectives of the Protocol for the Prohibition of the Use in War of Asphyxiating, Poisonous or Other Gases, and of Bacteriological Methods of Warfare, and reaffirms the vital necessity of upholding its provisions.

Without a vote, the Assembly adopted draft resolution XXIX titled “Observance of environmental norms in the drafting and implementation of agreements on disarmament and arms control” (document A/C.1/71/L.44), which called upon States to adopt unilateral, bilateral, regional and multilateral measures so as to contribute to ensuring the application of scientific and technological progress within the framework of international security, disarmament and other related spheres, without detriment to the environment or to its effective contribution to attaining sustainable development.

Next, the Assembly adopted, by a vote of 132 in favour to 4 against (Federated States of Micronesia, Israel, United Kingdom, United States), with 50 abstentions, draft resolution XXX titled “Promotion of multilateralism in the area of disarmament and non-proliferation” (document A/C.1/71/L.45), which called upon Member States to renew and fulfil their individual and collective commitments to multilateral cooperation as an important means of pursuing and achieving their common objectives in the area of disarmament and non-proliferation.

The Assembly then adopted, without a vote, draft resolution XXXI titled “Relationship between disarmament and development” (document A/C.1/71/L.46), which urged the international community to devote part of the resources made available by the implementation of disarmament and arms limitation agreements to economic and social development, with a view to reducing the ever-widening gap between developed and developing countries.

The Assembly then took up draft resolution XXXII titled “Nuclear disarmament” (document A/C.1/71/L.47), which urged all nuclear-weapon States to take effective disarmament measures to achieve the total elimination of all nuclear weapons at the earliest possible time.

The Assembly decided, by a vote of 171 in favour to 1 against (Pakistan), with 5 abstentions (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, France, Israel, Sudan, United Kingdom), to retain operative paragraph 16, which called for the immediate commencement of negotiations in the Conference on Disarmament, in the context of an agreed, comprehensive and balanced programme of work, on a non-discriminatory, multilateral and internationally and effectively verifiable treaty banning the production of fissile material for nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices on the basis of the report of the Special Coordinator and the mandate contained in CD/1299.

It then adopted the draft resolution as a whole, by a vote of 122 in favour to 44 against, with 17 abstentions.

Acting without a vote, the Assembly then adopted draft resolution XXXIII titled “Consolidation of peace through practical disarmament measures” (document A/C.1/71/L.52/Rev.1), which welcomed the activities undertaken by the Group of Interested States for Practical Disarmament Measures and invited that Group to continue to promote new practical disarmament measures to consolidate peace, especially as undertaken or designed by affected States themselves and regional and subregional organizations and United Nations agencies.

Also without a vote, the Assembly adopted draft resolution XXXIV titled “Treaty on a Nuclear-Weapon-Free-Zone in Central Asia” (document A/C.1/71/L.53), which welcomed the signing of the Treaty’s Protocol on 6 May 2014 by nuclear-weapon States and its ratification by four of them and called for the early completion of the ratification process.

Again without a vote, the Assembly adopted draft resolution XXXV titled “Preventing the acquisition by terrorists of radioactive sources” (document A/C.1/71/L.55), which called on Member States to support international efforts to prevent the acquisition and use by terrorists of radioactive materials and sources and, if necessary, suppress such acts, in accordance with their national legal authorities and legislation and consistent with international law.

The Assembly then took up draft resolution XXXVI titled “Nuclear disarmament verification” (document A/C.1/71/L.57/Rev.1), deciding, by a vote of 175 in favour to 1 against (Russian Federation), with no abstentions, to retain operative paragraph 1, which called for further efforts to reduce and eliminate all types of nuclear weapons, and reaffirms the unequivocal undertaking of the nuclear-weapon States to accomplish the total elimination of their nuclear arsenals.

By a vote of 175 in favour to none against, with 6 abstentions (Belarus, China, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Iran, Russian Federation, Syria), it then adopted the draft as a whole.  By the text, the Assembly encouraged the Conference on Disarmament and the Disarmament Commission to substantively address nuclear disarmament verification.  It also requested that the Secretary-General sought the views of Member States on developing practical and effective nuclear disarmament verification measures and their importance in achieving and maintaining a world without nuclear weapons and to report back to the General Assembly at its seventy‑second session.

The Assembly then took up draft resolution XXXVII titled “National legislation on transfer of arms, military equipment and dual‑use goods and technology” (document A/C.1/71/L.58), taking action to retain three paragraphs before voting on the text as a whole.

It decided, by a vote of 150 in favour to none against, with 26 abstentions, to retain preambular paragraph 7, which welcomed the Assembly’s adoption and entry into force of the Arms Trade Treaty and noted that the Treaty remained open for accession by any State that has not signed it.

The Assembly voted, with 152 in favour to none against, with 22 abstentions, to retain preambular paragraph 8, which considered that, as long as not all States that reported to the electronic database established by the Office for Disarmament Affairs had become party to the Treaty, the database would retain its added value.

By a vote of 156 in favour to 0 against, with 17 abstentions, it decided to retain operative paragraph 1, which invited Member States that were in a position to do so, without prejudice to the provisions contained in Security Council resolution 1540(2004) and subsequent relevant Council resolutions, to enact or improve national legislation, regulations and procedures to exercise effective control over the transfer of arms, military equipment and dual-use goods and technology, while ensuring that such legislation, regulations and procedures were consistent with the obligations of States parties under international treaties, such as the Arms Trade Treaty.

It then adopted the draft as a whole by a vote of 180 in favour to 0 against, with 3 abstentions (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Iran, Syria).  By the text, the Assembly encouraged Member States to provide, on a voluntary basis, information to the Secretary-General on their national legislation, regulations and procedures on the transfer of arms, military equipment and dual-use goods and technology and the changes therein.  It also requested the Secretary-General to make that information accessible to Member States.

The Assembly then turned to draft resolution XXXVIII titled “Implementation of the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons and on Their Destruction” (document A/C.1/71/L.61/Rev.1), taking action on four paragraphs in the text.

The Assembly decided, by a vote of 147 in favour to 8 against (Belarus, Burundi, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Iran, Russian Federation, Syria, Venezuela, Zimbabwe), with 17 abstentions, to retain preambular paragraph 3, which re-emphasized its unequivocal support for the decision of the Director General of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) to continue the mission to establish the facts surrounding the allegations of the use of toxic chemicals, reportedly chlorine, for hostile purposes in Syria, while stressing that the safety and security of mission personnel remained the top priority.

By a vote of 145 in favour to 8 against (Belarus, Burundi, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Iran, Russian Federation, Syria, Venezuela, Zimbabwe), with 19 abstentions, it decided to retain preambular paragraph 4, which recalled that, pursuant to Security Council resolution 2235 (2015), the Joint Investigative Mechanism of OPCW and the United Nations had been established to identify to the greatest extent feasible individuals, entities, groups or Governments that had been perpetrators, organizers, sponsors or otherwise involved in the use of chemicals as weapons, including chlorine or any other toxic chemical, in Syria, where the OPCW fact-finding mission had determined that a specific incident in Syria had involved or likely involved the use of chemicals as weapons.

It decided, by a vote of 139 in favour to 12 against, with 20 abstentions, to retain operative paragraph 2, which condemned in the strongest possible terms the use of chemical weapons as reported in the reports of the Joint Investigative Mechanism of 24 August and 21 October 2016, which concluded that there was sufficient information to determine that the Syrian Arab Armed Forces were responsible for the attacks which released toxic substances in Talmenes, on 21 April 2014, in Sarmin, on 16 March 2015, and in Qmenas, also on 16 March 2015, and that Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL/Da’esh) had used sulphur mustard in Marea.

By a vote of 143 in favour to 9 against (Belarus, Burundi, China, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Iran, Russian Federation, Syria, Venezuela, Zimbabwe), with 18 abstentions, it decided to retain operative paragraph 13, which underscored the concern expressed by the Executive Council in its decision EC-81/DEC.4 of 23 March 2016 regarding the report of the Director General (EC-81/HP/DG.1) indicating the gaps, inconsistencies and discrepancies that remained with respect to chemical weapons facilities, activities, munitions and chemical materials and concluding that the Technical Secretariat was unable at present to verify fully that the declaration and related submissions of the Syrian Arab Republic were accurate and complete, as required by the Convention and Executive Council decision EC-M-33/DEC.1 of 27 September 2013, and also underscored the importance of such full verification.

It then adopted, by a vote of 160 in favour to 6 against (Burundi, China, Iran, Kyrgyzstan, Russian Federation, Syria), with 15 abstentions, the draft resolution as a whole, which condemned in the strongest possible terms the use of chemical weapons by anyone under any circumstances, emphasizing that any use of chemical weapons anywhere, at any time, by anyone, under any circumstances was unacceptable and was and would be a violation of international law.  Also by the text, the Assembly expressed its strong conviction that those individuals responsible for the use of chemical weapons must and should be held accountable.

By a recorded vote of 151 in favour to 4 against (France, Israel, United Kingdom, United States), with 28 abstentions, the Assembly then adopted draft resolution XXXIX titled “Effects of the use of armaments and ammunitions containing depleted uranium” (document A/C.1/71/L.63), which commended the three regional peace and disarmament centres for their sustained support to Member States over the past 30 years in implementing disarmament, arms control and non‑proliferation activities.  It appealed to Member States in each region that were able to do so and to international governmental and non‑governmental organizations and foundations to make voluntary contributions to the centres.  It also requested the Secretary-General to provide all support necessary, within existing resources, to the regional centres in carrying out their programmes of activities.

The Assembly then adopted, by a recorded vote of 140 in favour to 30 against, with 15 abstentions, draft resolution XL titled “Follow-up to the 2013 high-level meeting of the General Assembly on nuclear disarmament” (document A/C.1/71/L.64), which endorsed the wide support expressed at the high-level meeting for a comprehensive convention on nuclear weapons and called for the urgent commencement of negotiations in the Conference on Disarmament for the early conclusion of a comprehensive convention on nuclear weapons to prohibit their possession, development, production, acquisition, testing, stockpiling, transfer, use or threat of use and to provide for their destruction.

The Assembly then postponed voting on draft resolution XLI titled “Treaty banning the production of fissile material for nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices” (document A/C.1/71/L.65/Rev.1) to a later date to review programme budget implications. A vote would be held as soon as a report of the Fifth Committee is available.

Acting without a vote, the Assembly then adopted draft resolution XLII titled “Countering the threat posed by improvised explosive devices” (document A/C.1/71/L.68/Rev.1), which strongly encouraged States to develop and adopt their own national policy to counter such weapons, including civilian-military cooperation so as to strengthen their countermeasure capability to combat illegal armed groups, terrorists and other unauthorized recipients in their use of those arms.  By the text, the Assembly noted that the policy could include measures to support international and regional efforts to prevent, protect against, respond to, recover from and mitigate attacks using improvised explosive devices and their widespread consequences.

The Assembly then adopted, without a vote, draft decision I titled “Further measures in the field of disarmament for the prevention of an arms race on the seabed and the ocean floor and in the subsoil thereof” (document A/C.1/71/L.48), which decided that the triennial report of the Secretary-General that had been requested in paragraph 8 of resolution 44/116 O shall henceforth be submitted only when the Assembly so decided.

By adopting draft decision II titled “Missiles” (document A/C.1/71/L.59) without a vote, the Assembly decided to include that item in the provisional agenda of its seventy-third session.

The Assembly then adopted, by a recorded vote of 179 in favour to none against, with 5 abstentions (Australia, France, Israel, United Kingdom, United States), draft decision III titled “Open-ended Working Group on the Fourth Special Session of the General Assembly Devoted to Disarmament” (document A/C.1/71/L.66).  By that text, it decided to include a sub-item titled “Convening of the fourth special session of the General Assembly devoted to disarmament” in the provisional agenda of its seventy-second session, under the item entitled “General and complete disarmament”.

The representative of Lebanon, speaking in explanation of position on L.66, said his delegation was fully committed to the objective of the Non-Proliferation Treaty, to which it was a signatory.  Against the backdrop of the Syrian crisis – to which Lebanon had a policy of “standing aloof” – his delegation had abstained in the vote despite its conviction that the Treaty should be fully implemented.

The representative of Pakistan said his delegation remained committed to the goal of a nuclear weapon-free world and supported the commencement of negotiations to that end in the Conference on Disarmament.  Stressing that verification would be an essential component whose credibility would rest on the creation of an independent mechanism, he said that work should be pursued in a comprehensive manner and not in a piecemeal way.  He noted that the most suitable venue for the creation of a verification mechanism would have been the Conference on Disarmament, recalling that Pakistan had proposed an amendment to that effect.  However, a 25-member group of governmental experts had been selected to undertake that work.  Pakistan had decided to vote in favour of L.57/Rev.1 in a spirit of consensus and hoped to be part of the group of governmental experts to be established pursuant to the text.

The representative of Egypt, noting his delegation’s awareness of the illicit trafficking in weapons and its commitment to combating it, said he had abstained in the vote on L.29, believing that the Treaty could not be considered universal or inclusive.  Noting that the Arms Trade Treaty had not been able to include a balanced, robust text acceptable to all, he rejected the principle of developing a disarmament instrument through a vote, instead of by consensus, and expressed particular concern over several issues.  They included the absence of definitions of important terms and concepts, including “end use” and “end user”, and the criteria by which an exporter would invoke the Treaty.  Stressing that all countries should be equally accountable to common benchmarks and warning that the Treaty in its current form risked subjectivity, he said the international community should continue to fill in remaining gaps, including on over-production and the ever-increasing stockpiles of major exporters and producers.

The representative of Venezuela said his delegation had abstained in the votes on L.61 and that draft’s preambular and operative paragraphs.  Over the past three years, that resolution had been developing negatively and had become focused on certain countries, giving rise to its loss of consensus backing.  “This is not helpful to anyone,” he said, noting that Venezuela attached great importance to the matter and had actively participated in the work of OPCW.  Condemning the protection, stockpiling and use of chemical weapons, he said the Assembly was not the appropriate forum for discussions that should instead take place at OPCW in The Hague.  The current “political manipulation” against a particular State had no bearing on the draft’s actual objective, he said, calling the resolution’s co‑sponsors to reconsider how the text was being managed and noting that confrontation and politicization still prevailed over unity.

The representative of Nicaragua said his delegation had intended to vote in favour of L.7/Rev.1.

The Assembly then turned to the report “Review and implementation of the Concluding Document of the Twelfth Special Session of the General Assembly” (document A/71/451), containing eight draft resolutions.

Acting without a vote, it adopted draft resolution I titled “United Nations disarmament fellowship, training and advisory services” (document A/C.1/71/L.51), which, among other things, expressed its appreciation to IAEA, OPCW, the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization, the International Court of Justice, the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe and the Vienna Centre for Disarmament and Non-Proliferation for organizing specific study programmes in the field of disarmament in their respective areas of competence, thereby contributing to the objectives of the programme.

The Assembly adopted, without a vote, draft resolution II titled “United Nations Disarmament Information Programme” (document A/C.1/71/L.39), which, among other things, stressed the importance of the United Nations Disarmament Information Programme as a significant instrument in enabling all Member States to participate fully in the deliberations and negotiations on disarmament in the various United Nations bodies, in assisting them in complying with treaties, as required, and in contributing to agreed mechanisms for transparency.

By a recorded vote of 128 in favour to 50 against, with 9 abstentions (Armenia, Belarus, Japan, Kyrgyzstan, Marshall Islands, Russian Federation, Serbia, South Sudan, Uzbekistan), it adopted draft resolution III titled “Convention on the Prohibition of the Use of Nuclear Weapons” (document A/C.1/71/L.10), which reiterated its request to the Conference on Disarmament to commence negotiations in order to reach agreement on an international convention prohibiting the use or threat of use of nuclear weapons under any circumstances.

Acting without a vote, it adopted draft resolution IV titled “United Nations Regional Centre for Peace and Disarmament in Africa” (document A/C.1/71/L.50), which, among other things, urged all States, as well as international governmental and non-governmental organizations and foundations, to make voluntary contributions to enable the centre to carry out its programmes and activities and meet the needs of African States.

The Assembly, without a vote, adopted draft resolution V titled “United Nations Regional Centre for Peace, Disarmament and Development in Latin America and the Caribbean” (document A/C.1/71/L.60), which expressed its appreciation for the political support provided by Member States, as well as for the financial contributions made by Member States, international governmental and non‑governmental organizations and foundations, to strengthen the centre, its programme of activities and the implementation thereof, and encouraged them to continue to make and to increase voluntary contributions.

Acting without a vote, it adopted draft resolution VI titled “United Nations Regional Centre for Peace and Disarmament in Asia and the Pacific” (document A/C.1/71/L.27), which reaffirmed its strong support for the role of the centre in the promotion of activities of the United Nations at the regional level to strengthen peace, stability and security among its Member States.

The Assembly adopted, without a vote, draft resolution VII titled “Regional confidence-building measures: activities of the United Nations Standing Advisory Committee on Security Questions in Central Africa” (document A/C.1/71/L.67), which appealed to the international community to support the efforts undertaken by the States concerned to implement disarmament, demobilization and reintegration programmes.  Also by the text, the Assembly expressed concern over the negative impact that poaching and wildlife trafficking have on the ecosystem, human development and regional security and called upon Member States to take immediate concerted action to counter this phenomenon, including through the implementation of the provisions of its resolutions 69/314 and 70/301.

Also by the text, the Assembly welcomed the efforts of the Standing Advisory Committee towards addressing cross-border security threats in Central Africa, including activities of Boko Haram and the Lord’s Resistance Army, and acts of piracy and armed robbery at sea in the Gulf of Guinea, as well as the fallout from the situation in the Central African Republic, and also welcomes the role of the United Nations Regional Office for Central Africa in coordinating those efforts, working closely with the Economic Community of Central African States, the African Union and all relevant regional and international partners.

Acting without a vote, it adopted draft resolution VIII titled “United Nations regional centres for peace and disarmament” (document A/C.1/71/L.62), which, among other things, commended the three regional centres for peace and disarmament for their sustained support to Member States over the past 30 years in implementing disarmament, arms control and non-proliferation activities through seminars and conferences, capacity-building and training, policy and technical expertise, and information and advocacy at the global, regional and national levels.

The Assembly then turned to the report “Review of the implementation of the recommendations and decisions adopted by the General Assembly at its tenth special session” (document A/71/452), containing two draft resolutions on the work of the Conference and Disarmament and on the Disarmament Commission, respectively.

Without a vote, the Assembly adopted draft resolution I titled “Report of the Conference on Disarmament” (document A/C.1/71/L.6).

The Assembly, without a vote, adopted draft resolution II titled “Report of the Disarmament Commission” (document A/C.1/71/L.38).

The Assembly then took up the report “The risk of nuclear proliferation in the Middle East” (document A/71/453), containing an eponymous draft resolution (document A/C.1/71/L.2/Rev.1), voting on two separate provisions.

The Assembly retained preambular paragraph 5 by a recorded vote of 170 in favour to 3 against (India, Israel, Palau), with 4 abstentions (Bhutan, Malawi, Pakistan, Panama).  By the text, the Assembly recalled the decision on principles and objectives for nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament adopted by the 1995 Review and Extension Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons on 11 May 1995, in which the Conference urged universal adherence to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons as an urgent priority and called upon all States not yet parties to the Treaty to accede to it at the earliest date, particularly those States that operate unsafeguarded nuclear facilities.

The Assembly also retained preambular paragraph 6 by a vote of 171 in favour to 3 against (India, Israel, Palau), with 3 abstentions (Bhutan, Pakistan, Panama), in which the Assembly recognized with satisfaction that, in the Final Document of the 2000 Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, the Conference undertook to make determined efforts towards the achievement of the goal of universality of the Treaty, called upon those remaining States not parties to the Treaty to accede to it, thereby accepting an international legally‑binding commitment not to acquire nuclear weapons or nuclear explosive devices and to accept Agency safeguards on all their nuclear activities, and underlined the necessity of universal adherence to the Treaty and of strict compliance by all parties with their obligations under the Treaty.

Adopting the draft as a whole by 157 in favour to 5 against (Canada, Federated States of Micronesia, Israel, Palau, United States), with 22 abstentions, the Assembly reiterated that the resolution on the Middle East adopted by the 1995 Review and Extension Conference of the Parties to the Non‑Proliferation Treaty remained valid until its goals and objectives were achieved and called for immediate steps towards the full implementation of that resolution.

The Assembly then turned to the report “Convention on Prohibitions or Restrictions on the Use of Certain Conventional Weapons Which May Be Deemed to Be Excessively Injurious or to Have Indiscriminate Effects” (document A/71/454), adopting, without a vote, an eponymous draft resolution (document A/C.1/71/L.4) contained therein.  By the text, the Assembly, among other things, called upon all States that have not yet done so to take all measures to become parties, as soon as possible, to the Convention with a view to achieving the widest possible adherence to these instruments at an early date and so as to ultimately achieve their universality.

Turning to the report “Strengthening of security and cooperation in the Mediterranean region” (document A/71/455), the Assembly adopted, without a vote, an eponymous draft resolution (document A/C.1/71/L.30) contained therein.  By the terms of that draft, the Assembly recognized that the elimination of the economic and social disparities in levels of development and other obstacles, as well as respect and greater understanding among cultures in the Mediterranean area, would contribute to enhancing peace, security and cooperation among Mediterranean countries through the existing forums.  It also called upon all States of the Mediterranean region that had not yet done so to adhere to all the multilaterally negotiated legal instruments related to the field of disarmament and non-proliferation, thus creating the conditions necessary for strengthening peace and cooperation in the region.

Turning to the report “Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty” (document A/71/456), containing an eponymous draft resolution (document A/C.1/71/L.28), the Assembly decided, by recorded vote to retain two paragraphs of that draft.

The representative of Egypt spoke in explanation of position, saying that while nuclear weapons constituted a serious threat to international peace and security, his delegation would abstain on the vote on preambular paragraph 4 as it was opposed to the reference to the recently adopted Security Council resolution 2310 (2016).  The Security Council was not the appropriate forum to deal with the treaty.  Moreover, involving the Security Council in the technical purview of the convention created parallel tracks.  At the same time, the resolution did not make reference to the need to achieve universality of the Non-Proliferation Treaty.

The Assembly then decided, by a vote of 170 in favour to none against, with 10 abstentions (Brazil, Cuba, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Ecuador, Egypt, Guatemala, India, Indonesia, Iran, Syria), to retain preambular paragraph 4, which urged all States not to carry out nuclear‑weapon test explosions or any other nuclear explosions, to maintain their moratoriums in this regard and to refrain from acts that would defeat the Treaty’s object and purpose, while stressing that these measures do not have the same permanent and legally binding effect as the Treaty’s entry into force.

The Assembly, by a vote of 175 in favour to none against, with 5 abstentions (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, India, Israel, Pakistan, Syria) decided to retain preambular paragraph 7, which urged all  States that have signed but not yet ratified the Treaty, in particular those whose ratification is needed for its entry into force, to accelerate their ratification processes with a view to ensuring their earliest successful conclusion.

By a vote of 183 in favour to 1 against (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea), with 3 abstentions (India, Mauritius, Syria), the Assembly adopted the text as a whole, which stressed the vital importance and urgency of signature and ratification, without delay and without conditions, in order to achieve the Treaty’s earliest entry into force.

Also by the draft, the Assembly strongly condemned the nuclear tests conducted by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea on 6 January and 9 September 2016, as expressed by Security Council resolution 2270 (2016) and its press statement of 9 September 2016, called for full compliance with the obligations under the relevant resolutions and reaffirmed its support for the Six-Party Talks.  It also urged all States that had not yet signed the Treaty, in particular those whose ratification was needed for its entry into force, to sign and ratify it as soon as possible.

It then took up the report “Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production and Stockpiling of Bacteriological (Biological) and Toxin Weapons and on Their Destruction” (document A/71/457), containing an eponymous draft resolution (document A/C.1/71/L.56), which it adopted without a vote.  By the terms of the text, the Assembly urged all States parties to build upon the discussions of the Preparatory Committee and to continue to work together to achieve a consensus outcome of the Eighth Review Conference.

The Assembly then considered the report “Revitalization of the work of the General Assembly” (document A/71/458), which contained a draft decision titled “Provisional programme of work and timetable of the First Committee for 2017”.  The Assembly adopted the decision without a vote.

The Assembly then took note of the report “Programme planning” (document A/71/459), which contained no draft resolutions.

Lastly, the Assembly decided not to discuss the report of the Fifth Committee “Human Resources Management” (document A/71/638).  It adopted a related draft resolution, titled “Implementation of the new common system compensation package in the United Nations Secretariat” (document A/C.5/71/L.5), without a vote.

As per the text, the General Assembly took note of the Secretary General’s notes on the matter as contained in documents A/70/896 and A/C.5/71/CRP.1, also expressing serious concern that the Secretary-General had failed to provide Member States with timely information on delays in the implementation of elements of the new compensation package for staff in the professional and higher categories.  The General Assembly decided that the Secretary-General, in implementing the new common system compensation package, would absorb all additional requirements from within existing resources, as had been described in document A/C.5/71/CRP.1.

The Assembly agreed to postpone the date of its recess to Monday, 19 December.  It also agreed to extend the work of the Fifth Committee (Administrative and Budgetary) to Friday, 16 December.

For information media. Not an official record.