General Assembly Adopts 8 Resolutions Promoting Cooperation with Regional Groups, 1 on Impact of Rapid Technology Changes Regarding Sustainable Development Goals

GA/12093
26 November 2018
Seventy-third Session, 39th & 40th Meetings (AM & PM)

General Assembly Adopts 8 Resolutions Promoting Cooperation with Regional Groups, 1 on Impact of Rapid Technology Changes Regarding Sustainable Development Goals

The General Assembly adopted nine resolutions today, eight of which focused on promoting cooperation between the United Nations and myriad regional and international organizations, as Member States repeatedly stressed the need for countries to work together to achieve common goals and targets.

The texts ranged from cooperation with regional organizations such as the Council of Europe and the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Organization to cooperation with international organizations such as the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL) and the Comprehensive Nuclear‑Test‑Ban Treaty Organization.  Speakers underscored the importance of coordination and collaboration in dealing with modern and emerging challenges, including peace and security.

Lassina Zerbo, Executive Secretary of the Preparatory Commission for the Test‑Ban Treaty Organization, said that if the international community is serious about its commitment to achieve a world free from nuclear tests, it must be prepared to act upon every opportunity to promote the instrument and advance its entry into force.  There is no greater threat to peace and security than the use of weapons of mass destruction.  While the Treaty is not universal in nature, it already enjoys 184 signatories and 167 ratifications.  The Assembly later adopted the related resolution “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Preparatory Commission for Comprehensive Nuclear‑Test‑Ban Treaty Organization”.

In the ensuing discussion, Member States expressed strong support for the Test‑Ban Treaty, adding that its verification regime is a critical element of the global nuclear non‑proliferation and disarmament architecture.  Australia’s representative said it is both reassuring and unfortunate how effective monitoring and verification has become as he recalled that Australian stations were among those to have detected recent tests conducted by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.

Under the terms of the resolution “Cooperation between the United Nations and the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL)”, the Assembly emphasized the importance of coordination in countering terrorism and fighting transnational crime.  The resolution particularly underscored the threat posed by the travel of foreign terrorist fighters, including those who return or relocate, emphasizing the need to strengthen international efforts to ensure that refugee status is not abused by the perpetrators, organizers and facilitators of terrorist acts.  It also reaffirmed the importance of close cooperation between the United Nations and INTERPOL to provide complementary support to peacekeeping and peacebuilding efforts, including through training and technical assistance.

Several Member States expressed strong support for boosting cooperation between the United Nations and INTERPOL, including Singapore’s delegate who welcomed the resolution’s timely updates to address such issues as the use of information and communication technologies for terrorist purposes.  Spain’s delegate said that fighting terrorism and transnational crime requires sufficient cooperation among various stakeholders.  Meanwhile, the representative of the United States voiced concerns about the disappearance of former INTERPOL President Meng Hongwei, calling for the organization’s leaders to promote the principles that make INTERPOL so vital.

Adopting the draft resolution “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Council of Europe” (document A/73/L.27) as a whole without a vote, the Assembly first decided to retain, by a recorded vote of 71 in favour to 9 against (Bahrain, Belarus, China, Oman, Russian Federation, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Syria, Yemen), with 27 abstentions, operative paragraph 4.

By the terms of that provision, the Assembly would recognize the important role of the Council of Europe in upholding the rule of law and fighting impunity, including by strengthening the capacity of the national judiciaries of its member States to carry out their work consistent with the relevant international obligations of the member States in particular, and where applicable, those defined in the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.

Sudan’s representative, explaining his delegation’s position, rejected the mention in operative paragraph 4 of the Rome Statute and the International Criminal Court.  He said the Court unfairly targets African leaders, undermines peace and security on the continent and has become an obstacle to justice, rather than a promoter of it.  As such, the resolution should not be used to carve out space for the Court at the United Nations, he said.

Acting without a vote, the Assembly adopted the following resolutions:  “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Central European Initiative”; “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Organization”; “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Organization for Democracy and Economic Development — GUAM”; and “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Commonwealth of Independent States”.  Action was postponed to a later date on draft resolutions “Cooperation between the United Nations and the League of Arab States” and “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Collective Security Treaty Organization”.

The Assembly also adopted the resolution “Impact of rapid technological change on the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals and targets”, by which terms it encouraged Member States to consider how rapid technological change is impacting implementation of the 2030 Agenda.  By the text, the Assembly requested the Technology Facilitation Mechanism and the Commission on Science and Technology for Development to present their updated findings on the impact of key technological changes.  It also invited the Commission on Science and Technology for Development and the Technology Facilitation Mechanism to strengthen synergies and mutually reinforce their work on science, technology and innovation.

Also speaking today were representatives of Croatia, Brazil, Italy, Qatar, Azerbaijan, Republic of Moldova, Tajikistan, Kuwait, Turkmenistan, Austria, Iraq, Turkey, Syria, Norway, Guinea, Ethiopia, Malaysia, United Republic of Tanzania, Sudan, Ukraine and the Russian Federation.

Also delivering statements were an observer for the Holy See, the Permanent Observer for the League of Arab States and the Secretary General of INTERPOL.

The representative of Syria spoke in exercise of the right of reply.

The General Assembly will reconvene again at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, 28 November, to appoint judges to the United Nations Dispute Tribunal and United Nations Appeals Tribunal.

Cooperation between United Nations and Regional, Other Organizations

The Secretariat announced that action would be postponed on the draft resolution “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Collective Security Treaty Organization” (document A/73/L.24).

LASSINA ZERBO, Executive Secretary of the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization, introducing his reports covering the years 2016 and 2017, transmitted in the Secretary-General’s note (document A/73/97), said that although the Test-Ban Treaty has yet to come into force, it enjoys near universal support.  There are now 184 States that have signed the instrument, of which 167 have also ratified it.  He outlined various ministerial meetings held in the past year to bring together high-level officials to review progress made, including convening the second Test-Ban Treaty Science Diplomacy Symposium, attracting more than 120 policymakers, diplomats and practitioners.  They worked to raise public awareness of the Treaty and its contribution to peace and security.

Turning to developments related to the Test‑Ban Treaty’s verification regime, he said the system is nearing completion.  As of November, there are 296 certified facilities in the International Monitoring System and another 16 installed or under construction.  The system’s reliability has been demonstrated by detecting every nuclear test conducted by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.  The Test‑Ban Treaty verification regime and its associated technologies and data have also proven valuable for civil and scientific purposes.  The potential for International Monitoring System data to contribute to volcanic ash advisories for airline safety, disaster risk reduction and mitigation efforts is currently being explored.

Nuclear test monitoring data and technologies can also help to support the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, he continued.  Monitoring movements of glaciers, hurricanes and tornadoes alongside seasonal variations of specific radionuclides helps scientists to better understand the impacts of climate change.  To ensure the verification regime remains at the forefront of scientific and technical innovation, the international community must further enhance the strong relationship with the scientific and technological community.  Turning to enhanced cooperation with the United Nations, he said there is no greater threat to peace and security than the use of weapons of mass destruction.  He welcomed various steps taken by the Secretary-General to boost collaboration between his Organization and the United Nations.  If the international community is serious about its commitment to achieve a world free from nuclear tests, it must be prepared to act upon every opportunity to promote the Test-Ban Treaty and advance its entry into force.

VLADIMIR DROBNJAK (Croatia), introducing the draft resolution “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Central European Initiative” (document A/73/L.17), said efforts focus on political and socioeconomic development.  This includes the Plan of Action 2018-2020, which contributes to the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals across the region.  The Central European Initiative is committed to developing practical and result-oriented projects, particularly with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the Economic Commission for Europe (ECE).

He then introduced the draft resolution “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Council of Europe” (document A/73/L.27), which “recognizes the ever-increasing role of the Council of Europe in the protection and strengthening of human rights and fundamental freedoms”.  He said the Council is committed to promoting human rights, democracy and the rule of law and stands ready to engage in dialogue to that end.

MAURO VIEIRA (Brazil), also speaking on behalf of Switzerland, introduced the draft resolution “Cooperation between the United Nations and the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL)” (document A/73/L.21), which promotes stronger cooperation within the respective mandate of both organizations.  It also works to raise awareness among Member States about the role INTERPOL plays within the United Nations.  In addition, “L.21” reflects significant changes in international security priorities of the United Nations, including counter-terrorism activities and countering the use of information and communications for criminal purposes.  It further calls for increased cooperation in preventing and combating transnational crime and terrorism.

MARIA ANGELA ZAPPIA (Italy), introducing the draft resolution “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear‑Test‑Ban Treaty Organization” (document A/73/L.22), said deliberations on the matter provide an opportunity to renew commitment towards a world free of nuclear weapons.  The Test‑Ban Treaty paved the way for a moratorium on nuclear testing and led to a highly effective and reliable global monitoring system.  The draft proposes the inclusion on the provisional agenda of the Assembly’s seventy‑fifth session a discussion devoted to cooperation between the United Nations and the Treaty’s Preparatory Commission, she said, adding that such efforts serve the interests of the international community.  She noted that the Secretariat has been informed about a necessary oral amendment to preambular paragraph 3.

ALYA AHMED SAIF AL-THANI (Qatar), introducing the draft resolution “Cooperation between the United Nations and the League of Arab States” (document A/73/L.23), said the draft galvanizes the principle of cooperation with regional organizations, particularly relating to global peace and security.  “L.23” reflects a need to strengthen cooperation to implement common goals and maintain a high level of cooperation between the secretariats of both organizations.  She called on Member States to adopt the draft by consensus.

YASHAR T. ALIYEV (Azerbaijan), introducing the draft resolution “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Organization” (document A/73/L.25), said the draft reiterates the conviction that working together contributes to the promotion of the purposes and principles of the United Nations.  “L.25” also seeks to promote the interest of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Organization in the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.  Moreover, the text’s adoption will strengthen the relevance and viability of activities undertaken for the benefit of countries in the region.

VICTOR MORARU (Republic of Moldova) introduced the draft resolution “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Organization for Democracy and Economic Development — GUAM” (document A/73/L.26/Rev.1).  Both organizations are important partners in efforts to pursue stability and sustainable development.  “L.26/Rev.1” underscores the importance of cooperation and acknowledges efforts made by the Organization for Democracy and Economic Development to enhance relationships with United Nations Member States.  The draft resolution’s goal is to promote the vision and principles of the Charter of the United Nations, he said, calling for the draft’s adoption without a vote.

JONIBEK HIKMATOV (Tajikistan), introducing the draft resolution “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Commonwealth of Independent States” (document A/73/L.28), said the Commonwealth demonstrates it is a platform conducive to dialogue on political, social and humanitarian issues.  It also participates in large‑scale forums of the United Nations and other organizations and its efforts include initiatives to enhance cooperation on security, energy and tourism matters.  “L.28” seeks to strengthen cooperation with the United Nations, he said, calling for its adoption by consensus.

DARREL CHUA (Singapore) said the United Nations should deepen and expand its partnerships with regional and other organizations, and existing synergies between different regional organizations should be strengthened.  Drawing attention to the draft resolution on INTERPOL, he said it includes timely updates to address such issues as travel by foreign terrorist fighters and the use of information and communication technologies for terrorist purposes.  As the 2018 Chair of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), Singapore will be tabling a resolution on cooperation between the United Nations and that organization.

JAWAHER EBRAHEEM DUAIJ E. ALSABAH (Kuwait), associating herself with the Arab Group and the League of Arab States, said that cooperation between the United Nations and regional and subregional organizations has become a necessity, given the changing international landscape and the rise in the number of domestic and regional conflicts.  Some regional organizations have sought cooperation with the United Nations, as they witness complex and multidimensional challenges that can no longer be predicted.  Regional organizations often have a deeper understanding of the root causes of conflicts and are best able to identify solutions.  She welcomed more memorandums of understanding between the regional organizations operating in the Middle East and the United Nations.  It is important to expand cooperation to include fields of development, economy, and social and cultural aspects.  In addition, disputes could be settled through cooperation.

AKSOLTAN ATAEVA (Turkmenistan) said the impacts of the Aral Sea catastrophe are being felt throughout Central Asia and around the world, with toxic salts from this body of water reaching northern Europe and other regions.  She urged Member States to cooperate to help to reduce the Aral’s destructive climate and health impact on the surrounding region.  The issue has become truly global in nature.  During the current Assembly session, Turkmenistan intends to table a new resolution that will include the outcome on the Aral Sea Summit, held in Turkmenistan in August.  She further proposed various initiatives including boosting cooperation between the United Nations and the Aral Sea Basin region, creating a global platform for international cooperation and improving the socioeconomic situation in the region.  Further, a special United Nations programme for the Aral Sea Basin will help to address myriad challenges.

JAN KICKERT (Austria) welcomed the draft resolution on the Test‑Ban‑Treaty and noted the ever‑growing relationship between its Preparatory Commission and the United Nations.  The instrument established a universal norm against nuclear testing, he said, adding that tests conducted by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea demonstrate the Treaty’s importance.  “Pyongyang must move towards complete denuclearization and sign the Treaty without delay,” he said, noting that the Preparatory Commission must engage in the denuclearization process.  He also called on all States to sign and ratify the treaty without delay.

HASSANAIN HADI FADHIL FADHIL (Iraq) said his Government has a profound understanding of the importance of an international, legally binding tool to address the threat of nuclear weapons.  As such, Iraq underscores the relevance of implementing the Test‑Ban‑Treaty to ensure peace and stability.  He welcomed Thailand’s ratification of the Treaty and said the Preparatory Commission’s work must be enhanced.  “Iraq sees the Treaty as a tool of fundamental importance,” he said, adding that the instrument establishes universality related to the ban on nuclear testing.  He invited the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea to ratify the Treaty so it can be implemented as soon as possible.

PETER HORNE (Australia) expressed strong support for the Test‑Ban Treaty, adding that its verification regime is a critical element of the global nuclear non‑proliferation and disarmament architecture.  It is both reassuring and unfortunate how effective monitoring and verification has become, he continued, recalling that Australian stations were among those to have detected recent tests conducted by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.  This serves as a clear reminder of the Treaty’s importance.  Australia is committed to the complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.  He noted that country’s commitment to halt nuclear testing and to allow international inspectors in.  While Australia notes this progress, it is also committed to maintaining pressure on Pyongyang to take concrete steps toward denuclearization.  Calling on all countries in the region to ratify the Treaty, he said its entry into force is of critical importance.

MARÍA BASSOLS DELGADO (Spain), referring to “L.21” on INTERPOL, welcomed the adoption of this draft resolution several years ago.  Spain has been a member of INTERPOL for decades and fully recognized the importance of its work in fighting terrorism and transnational crime.  Combating these two scourges requires sufficient cooperation among various stakeholders.  For Spain, counter‑terrorism remains a priority.  Turning to “L.22”, she recalled the urgent need for the Test‑Ban Treaty to enter into force and said all Member States, particularly the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, must sign and ratify the instrument.

DIGDEM BUNER (Turkey) said that terrorism and organized crime continued to challenge international peace and security.  Efforts to suppress terrorist cells and criminal organizations should have a strong international dimension.  For this reason, Turkey supported the adoption of the resolution on the Cooperation between the United Nations and INTERPOL.  As a country that has been fighting almost all types of terrorism for more than 40 years, Turkey firmly believes that it is important to apply the universal principle of prosecute or extradite.  The message to all terrorists should be the same:  there is no safe haven or immunity from justice.  No action of terrorism should go unpunished.

AMMAR AL ARSAN (Syria) said his country was among the founders of the League of Arab States, an organization mandated to enhance economic and social cooperation among its Members.  Pointing to the occupation of Palestine and of the Syrian Golan, he said the League struggles to maintain its credibility as an organization that defends the rights of its constituents.  The last decade has seen “serious setbacks” in its performance because of the activities of certain oil‑producing countries that have fallen prey to foreign interests.  These Governments control working mechanisms within the League to serve their own agendas.  The suspension of Syria’s membership from the League was illegitimate, as outlined by the organization’s charter.  “The responsibility to retract that decision is borne by States that breached the charter’s principles,” he said, adding that the League imposed an economic blockade on Syria as it was combating extremists financed by certain member States.  The Government of Syria has “categorical reservations” regarding references in the Secretary‑General’s report on cooperation between the United Nations and other organizations regarding the League’s involvement in country‑specific situations.  For these reasons, Syria requested a recorded vote on draft resolution “L.23”.

TORE HATTREM (Norway), noting that his country is a consistent partner in the global multilateral system, said “all countries depend on the international system to address the many global challenges we face.”  Commending the maturing of relations between the United Nations and African Union, he noted that in less than two years, the two institutions have signed and started two important framework agreements on peace and security.  Partnerships with regional organizations are quite rightly given priority in the Secretary‑General’s Action for Peacekeeping initiative.  There cannot be development without security and vice versa.  He further welcomed the signing of initiatives regarding development, accelerating domestic resource mobilization and conflict prevention, adding that cooperation between the United Nations and ASEAN remains essential to achieve sustainable development in the region.

FATOUMATA KABA (Guinea) highlighted progress made between the African Union and the United Nations.  With Agenda 2063 in its first decade-long implementation plan, a strategic partnership among the United Nations and African Union has become crucial across all fields, but particularly in peace and security.  Such a partnership has allowed countries on the continent to make tangible progress, particularly in the Horn of Africa region.  She welcomed the Secretary‑General’s renewed commitment and numerous initiatives.  However, given the breadth and complexity of the challenges, United Nations action in various sectors must continue, particularly in ensuring peace and security and promoting democracy.  In this vein, she underscored the importance of sufficient, predictable and long‑term funding, while emphasizing the importance of empowering women and promoting the rights of young people.

NEBIYU TEDLA NEGASH (Ethiopia) said the United Nations cannot handle emerging global challenges alone.  Forging partnerships with other organizations is an absolute necessity, he said, adding that the role of the United Nations in addressing myriad issues in Africa is commendable.  The Joint Framework for Enhanced Partnership in Peace and Security is “a clear testament to the renewed commitment to address common challenges of peace and security in Africa”, he said.  Yet, increased cooperation is needed in coordinating the decisions of both organizations.  Such efforts are particularly relevant in the context of discussions about the sustainability of funding for African Union peace support operations.  He said strengthening the capacity of the United Nations Office to the African Union will help to ensure enhanced ability to address the continent’s challenges.

AMIR HAMZAH BIN MOHD NASIR (Malaysia) welcomed progress made to facilitate the entry into force of the Test‑Ban Treaty, including maintaining all existing moratoriums on test explosions.  Nonetheless, these measures do not have the same permanent and legally binding effect to end such activities.  He expressed hope that more progress will be made towards the Treaty’s universalization.  Further, Malaysia supported the completion of the Test‑Ban Treaty Organization’s tasks in the most efficient and effective way.  He also recognized the benefits of the scientific applications of verification technologies in areas such as the environment, science and technology, tsunami warning systems, detection of the accidental release of radioactive particulates and gases, and other related alert systems.

NOEL KAGANDA (United Republic of Tanzania) reaffirmed his delegation’s commitment to the Test‑Ban‑Treaty.  Welcoming Thailand’s recent ratification of the Treaty, he urged all States to follow suit.  Recognizing the importance of strengthening the verification regime, he called for increased technical support and meaningful engagement among all stakeholders.  The provisional secretariat must support developing countries in the areas of climate change and early warning systems.  “Support to Member States is of utmost importance,” he said, encouraging the international community to participate actively within the Treaty’s framework.

DAVID P. CHARTERS, an observer for the Holy See, strongly urged all States to ratify the Test‑Ban‑Treaty and praised the work of its secretariat.

MAGED ABDELFATTAH ABDELAZIZ, Permanent Observer for the League of Arab States, said cooperation between the United Nations and other organizations is increasingly important.  Such cooperation with the League of Arab States resulted in contributions by Arab States across all pillars of the United Nations work.  Efforts undertaken by both organizations include information exchanges through which capacity‑building initiatives have been bolstered in fields of counter‑terrorism and the fight against illicit trafficking.  The League will establish a liaison centre in Cairo to strengthen cooperation efforts and envisages a new phase of work with the United Nations to strengthen peace and security across the region.  He called for the creation of a sovereign, independent Palestinian State and for peaceful solutions to crises in Libya, Syria and Yemen.

He called for increased engagement with civil society organizations and noted the League’s participation in training programmes to promote good governance.  Efforts are also under way to increase engagement with the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights.  He commended the Secretary‑General’s reform efforts and urged increased cooperation with all regional organizations.  Highlighting that “L.23” aims at enhancing cooperation with the United Nations, he took note of reservations expressed by Syria, a country he said is violating the United Nations Charter and relevant resolutions.  “The League has not imposed an embargo on Syria,” he asserted, adding that it was in fact assisting Syrians that have fled to neighbouring countries.

JÜRGEN STOCK, Secretary‑General of INTERPOL, said new challenges emerged since the Assembly last considered his organization’s cooperation with the United Nations.  New threats are fuelled by unprecedented technological advances and global instability, with the one constant being the determination of international criminal groups to exploit national boundaries to evade the rule of law.  “Strengthening international law enforcement cooperation is the only way for the international community to stay ahead of the curve,” he said, noting that INTERPOL’s cooperation efforts are rooted in neutrality to instil trust.  Cooperation related to counter‑terrorism has intensified, he noted, pointing to new agreements between INTERPOL and the United Nations Office of Counter‑Terrorism and its Counter‑Terrorism Executive Directorate.  “The fight against international crime is an instrument in bringing about global peace and stability,” he said, adding that addressing increasingly complex emerging challenges requires political leadership in international police cooperation.  “L.21” marks a milestone in a common journey towards a safer world.

Action on Draft Resolutions

The representative of Sudan requested a recorded vote on operative paragraph 4 in “L.27” on the Council of Europe, rejecting its mention of the Rome Statute and the International Criminal Court.

The representative of Ukraine, speaking in explanation of position on resolution “L.28” on the Commonwealth of Independent States, said the United Nations ignores the Russian Federation’s violation of international law.  On 25 November, the Russian Federation carried an act of aggression against Ukraine, he said, noting that his delegation would not be joining consensus on “L.28”.

The representative of the Republic of Moldova said that while his delegation was joining consensus on “L.28”, it has reservations, including that his country did not recognize the international legal character of the Commonwealth of Independent States.  The adoption of “L.28” should not be interpreted as a deviation from this belief.

The representative of Sudan said the International Criminal Court is a platform for politicizing international justice.  The Court unfairly targets African leaders, undermines peace and security on the continent and has become an obstacle to justice, rather than a promoter of it.  “L.27” should not be used to carve out space for the Court at the United Nations, he said, reiterating his delegation’s opposition to any mention of the Rome Statute.

The representative of Austria, speaking on behalf of the European Union, expressed deep regret over Sudan’s proposal to delete the paragraph mentioning the International Criminal Court.  The Court’s role is to complement rather than replace national juridical institutions.  A key element of the Rome Statute is its equal application.  The fight against impunity is critical to ensure justice for victims.  The Court has been instrumental in bring justice to millions of people, he said, calling on all Member States to vote in favour of retaining operative paragraph 4 in “L.27”.

The Assembly then took up the draft resolution “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Central European Initiative” (document A/73/L.17), adopting it without a vote.

Also without a vote, the Assembly then adopted the draft resolution “Cooperation between the United Nations and the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL)” (document A/73/L.21).

Next, the Assembly considered the draft resolution “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear‑Test‑Ban Treaty Organization” (document A/73/L.22), adopting it, as orally revised, without a vote.

The Assembly also adopted, without a vote, the draft resolution “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Organization” (document A/73/L.25).

It then adopted, without a vote, the draft resolution “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Organization for Democracy and Economic Development — GUAM” (document A/73/L.26/Rev.1).

Turning to the draft resolution “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Council of Europe” (document A/73/L.27), the Assembly first held a recorded vote on operative paragraph 4, which would have the Assembly recognize the important role of the Council of Europe in upholding the rule of law and fighting impunity, including by strengthening the capacity of the national judiciaries of its member States to carry out their work consistent with the relevant international obligations of the member States in particular, and where applicable, those defined in the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.

The Assembly decided to retain operative paragraph 4 by a recorded vote of 71 in favour to 9 against (Bahrain, Belarus, China, Oman, Russian Federation, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Syria, Yemen), with 27 abstentions.

It then adopted “L.27”, as a whole, without a vote.

The Assembly next adopted, without a vote, the draft resolution “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Commonwealth of Independent States” (document A/73/L.28).

The representative of the United States, explaining his country’s position, said INTERPOL plays an important role in cooperation related to crime prevention and criminal justice matters.  While the United States supports the intent of the related resolution, language in parts of the text must be clarified.  He denounced all efforts by States to use INTERPOL notices to target religious and ethnic groups, including in China, and noted the importance of neutrality in its work.  Voicing concern over the disappearance of former INTERPOL President Meng Hongwei, he called for leaders in the organization to promote the principles that make INTERPOL so vital.

The representative of the Russian Federation, referring to “L.27” on the Council of Europe, said the text will broaden cooperation, including in efforts to prevent violence against women.  At the same time, the Council of Europe Convention on Preventing and Combating Violence against Women and Domestic Violence includes language that runs counter to Russian legislation.  Turning to issues related to freedom of expression and opinion, he said it is premature to refer to the work of the Council’s platform to promote the protection of journalism and the safety of journalists as “positive”.

Right of Reply

The representative of Syria, speaking in exercise of the right of reply, addressed statements made by an observer of the League of Arab States, saying his delegation “will never stoop as low as the observer”.  Syria will always be in favour of Arab cooperation, he said, declaring that several League members mentioned that the group’s statement delivered earlier today deviated from the original agreed‑upon version.  “The observer did not respect the mandate given to him,” he asserted, adding that such actions highlight efforts to hijack the League’s activities.  The record of the meeting at which Syria was suspended from the League show that three States opposed the decision, adding that the League’s Charter states that the suspension of membership can only take place at a summit.  Moreover, the Arab League resolution 7442, adopted in 2011, imposed unilateral coercive measures against Syria, including the suspension of transactions with the Central Bank of Syria.

Impact of Rapid Technological Change on Realizing 2030 Agenda Goals

JUAN JOSÉ IGNACIO GÓMEZ CAMACHO (Mexico), presenting the draft resolution “Impact of rapid technological change on the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals and targets”, (document A/73/L.20), said that new technologies can change the destinies of nations.  They could also impact public policy to achieve the 2030 Agenda.  Technological change must be considered in the next follow‑up cycle of the review of implementation of the 2030 Agenda.  The rise of new technologies has brought about many challenges, but also opportunities.  The impact of these technologies will depend greatly on the ability of Governments to come together and cooperate on realizing a global vision.

Action on Draft Resolution

The Assembly then adopted, without a vote, the draft resolution “Impact of rapid technological change on the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals and targets” (document A/73/L.20).

For information media. Not an official record.