Commission on the Status of Women, resumed 26th session : summary record of the 665th meeting
|UN Document Symbol||E/CN.6/SR.665|
|Convention||Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW)|
|Document Type||Summary Record|
E/CN.6/SR.665 10 December 1976
Original : FRENCH
COMMISSION ON THE STATUS' OF WOMEN Resumed twenty-sixth Session
SUMMARY RECORD OF THE 665IH MEETING
held at the Palais des Nations, Geneva, on Wednesday, 8th December 1976, at 3 p.m.
Chairman: Mrs. GONZALEZ de CUADROS (Colombia)
later: Mrs. GUEYE (Senegal)
CONTENTS International instruments relating to the status of women (agenda item 3) (continued) (a) Draft convention on the elimination of discrimination against women
INTERNATIONAL INSTRUMENTS RELATING TO THE STATUS OF WOMEN (agenda item 3) (continued)
(a) Draft convention on the elimination of discrimination against women
(E/CN.6/591 and Add.1; E/CN.6/L.700, L.702 and L.704)
1. The CHAIRMAN said that the text of the new paragraph proposed at the previous meeting by the German Democratic Republic was not yet available in all languages. It would be better, therefore, to postpone its examination until a later date. Consequently, she invited the Commission to consider the seventh preambular paragraph of the Belgian draft (E/CN.6/59l/Add.1).
2. Mrs. NIKOLAEVA (Union of Soviet Socialist Republics) and
Mrs. COCKCROFT (United Kingdom) said that they had been under the impression that the
amendment by the German Democratic Republic related to that very same seventh paragraph.
3. Mrs. GUEYE (Senegal), Mr. EHSASSI (Iran), Miss TYABJI (India) and
Mrs. HUSSEIN (Egypt) said that the discussion in the Working Group had made it clear that the text proposed by the German Democratic Republic should form a separate paragraph to be subsequently inserted between the sixth and seventh paragraphs of the Belgian draft.
4. Mrs. HOERZ (German Democratic Republic), having confirmed what had just been said,
proposed another amendment to the seventh paragraph of the Belgian draft, namely,
that the words "as well as men" be replaced by "on equal terms with men".
5. Mr.. EHSASSI (Iran) said that it was his impression that the paragraph in question was not a very constructive one in that it was limited to establishing a fact. A convention should be more precise and should spell out the appropriate role of women in development. The amendment by the German Democratic Republic appeared acceptable, but the same idea might be conveyed by simply replacing the word "maximum" by the word "equal".
6. Mrs. COCKCROFT (United Kingdom) supported that proposal and suggested the deletion of the words "in all fields" at the end of the paragraph.
7. Mrs. VENEZI-COSMETATOS (Greece) said that she was opposed to the deletion of the words "in all fields".
8. Mrs. NIKOLAEVA (Union of Soviet Socialist Republics) said that the text could be clarified still further if it were amended to read: "... equal participation of women and men in all fields of public and social life".
9. Mrs. HIRLEMANN (France) said that it would weaken the text if "maximum" were replaced by "equal". The word "maximum" implied that everyone was called upon to make the greatest possible effort.
10. Miss TYABJI (India) said that she agreed with the representative of France. She thought that the addition of the words "of public and social life", proposed by the Soviet Union, would be too limiting. The amendment by the German Democratic Republic seemed sufficiently clear and complete as it stood.
E/CN.6/SR.665 page 3
11. Begum Tazeen FARIDI (Pakistan) said that she, too, was opposed to the addition
of the words "of public and social life" which, she thought, restricted the scope
of the paragraph,
12. Mrs. NIKOLAEVA. (Union of Soviet Socialist Republics) suggested that the formula
"in all areas of life" might be used.
13. Mrs. HUSSEIN (Egypt), supported by Mrs. GUEYE (Senegal), pointed out that there should be no difficulty in adopting the seventh paragraph of the Belgian draft, since an identical text had already appeared in the Declaration on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women.
14. My EHSASSI (Iran), supported by Mrs. VENEZI-COSMETATOS (Greece), said that the text proposed by Belgium made no constructive contribution to the draft convention. He formally requested that the Commission should take an immediate decision on the amendment by the German Democratic Republic.
15. Mrs. NIKOLAEVA (Union of Soviet Socialist Republics) and Mrs. HUSSEIN (Egypt) said that they agreed with the representative of Iran.
16. The amendment by the German Democratic Republic was adopted by consensus.
17. The seventh paragraph was adopted by consensus.
18. Ms. FREDGARD (Sweden) proposed that the eighth paragraph should be amended to read; "Bearing in mind the great contribution of women to society, so far not fully recognized, the social significance of parenthood and the role of women as of men in the family and in the rearing of children".
19. Mrs. HIRLEMAM, (France) said that the text proposed by the representative of Sweden was repetitious.
20. Begum Tazeen FARIDI (Pakistan) asked why the words "the creation of the material and. spiritual values" had been omitted from the Swedish amendment,
21. Ms. MOLLER (Denmark) supported the Swedish text, which she thought was clearer than the Belgian one.
22. Mrs. B0K0R-SZEGO (Hungary) endorsed the Belgian text.
23. Miss TYABJI (India) said that she preferred the Swedish text.
24. Mrs. HUTAR (United States of America) said that she supported the Swedish text, but suggested that it be amended slightly to avoid repetition. She proposed that it should reads "Bearing in mind the great contribution of women to society, so far not fully recognized, the social significance of the role of parents in the family and in the rearing of children".
25. The question of the protection of motherhood should preferably be treated in the articles, the preamble being reserved as far as possible for general statements. There was no reason to discriminate in the preamble between the roles of the parents. It was sufficient to say that each of them should help to create a strong family unit and a strong society.
26. Mr. EHSASSI (Iran) agreed that the Swedish amendment improved the text of the paragraph under discussion. The test solution would be either to delete the phrase "the social significance of parenthood" in the Swedish text or adopt the text as/ amended by the representative of the United States.
27. Mrs. ROMMTOVICH (Byelorussian Soviet Socialist Republic) said that she preferred the Belgian text in its existing form.
28. Ms. LORANGER (Canada) suggested that the end of the Swedish text be amended to read: "... the significant social role of parents in the family and in the rearing of children".
29. Ms. KAHRLACTD (Sweden) withdrew her amendment in favour of the text proposed by the representative of the United States.
30. With respect to the protection of motherhood, she wished to point out that the
protection of parenthood included the protection of motherhood. There were many fathers,
in Sweden at any rate, who would like to look after their children but were not always
able to do so; it was important, in the interests of the child also, to give fathers
31. Mr. VALLARTA (Mexico) said that he endorsed the views of the Swedish representative
and supported the text, proposed by the representative of the United States. After all,
if emphasis was laid on the need to share family responsibilities, then motherhood was
32 Mrs. GUEYE (Senegal) said that that that it was essential for the social importance of motherhood to be recognized in developing countries. Consequently, the original wording of the eighth paragraph created no difficulties for her delegation In a spirit of compromise, she was able to accept the Swedish text, as amended by the United States, but the phrase "the contribution of women to society" could be improved upon. It might read "the contribution of women to the development of society" or some such expression,
33. Begum Tazeen FARIDI (Pakistan) said that it was important that the Convention should be drafted in simple and intelligible Germs. In fact, the text was often lacking in simplicity, For instance, the English concept of "parenthood" was difficult to translate. It would "be "better to speak of the roles of the father and the mother.
34. Mrs. HUSSEIN (Egypt) said that she thought that the protection of motherhood should be mentioned in the preamble, as had been done in the Belgian text. After long discussions, the Commission had reached a compromise on the subject in the articles, and that compromise should be reflected in the preamble. The desire for equality should not be pushed too far: there were limits to the interchangeability of functions between the father and the mother.
35. Ms. FREDGARD (Sweden) proposed the following, compromise texts "Bearing in mind the great contribution of women to the development of society, so far not fully recognised, the social significance of mothers and fathers and the role of women as of men in the family and in the rearing of children".
36. Mrs. HUSSEIN (Egypt) said that the latest text could hardly be called a compromise. It might, perhaps, be possible to remove the objections to the Belgian text by amending the last part of it to read "... the significance of motherhood and the social role of women as of men in the family and in the rearing of children".
37. Mrs. COCKCROFT (United Kingdom) said that the solution might be to speak of. "the bearing and rearing of children".
E/CN.6/SR. 665 page 5
38. She wished to point out that the Convention was addressed to all women and that many of them did not marry or had no children. Attention should not be focused solely on motherhood.
39. Mrs. BOKOR-SZEGO (Hungary) suggested that the expression "the social significance of motherhood" be replaced by "the responsibility of society to protect motherhood".
40. The CHAIRMAN invited the delegations that had submitted amendments and other interested delegations to consult together and prepare, if possible, a common text."
41. It was so decided.
42. The, meeting was suspended at 4.35 p.m. and resumed at 4.55 p.m.
43. At the invitation of the CHAIRMAN, Mrs. VENEZI-COSMETATOS (Greece) submitted a compromise, text for the eighth, preambular paragraph, drafted during' the suspension of the meeting, which read:
"Bearing' in mind the great contribution of women to the development of society, so far not fully recognized, the social significance of maternity and the role of parents in the family and in the rearing of children,".
44. Mrs. HIRLEMANN (France) said that the text was an excellent one.'
45.. Ms FREDGARD (Sweden) said she was quite satisfied with the text and thanked all the delegations who had helped to prepare it, particularly the Greek delegation.
46. The CHAIRMAN said that, in the absence of any objection, she would take it that the Commission wished to adopt, by consensus, the text of the eighth paragraph as read out by the representative of Greece.
47. It was so decided.
Ninth preambular paragraph
48. The CHAIRMAN said that, if there, were no objections, she would take it that the ninth preambular paragraph was adopted by consensus.
49. It was so decided.
Sixth preambular paragraph
50. The CHAIRMAN recalled that, at the previous meeting, certain difficulties had
been mentioned in connexion with the Russian text of the draft amendment by the
United Kingdom to the sixth preambular paragraph, distributed under the
51. Mrs. NIKOLAEVA (Union of Soviet Socialist Republics) said that a Russian text, which appeared quite acceptable to her delegation, had just been distributed.
E/CN.6/SR.665 page 6
52. The CHAIRMNA proposed that the Commission should adopt by consensus the United Kingdom amendment to the sixth preambular paragraph (E/CN.6/L.702).
53. It was so decided.
Seventh (new) preambular paragraph
54. The CHAIRMAN drew attention to a seventh (new) preambular paragraph, originally proposed by the German Democratic Republic and approved that morning by the Working Group (E/CN.6/L.704).
55. Mr. LEHMANN (Denmark) suggested that the wording of the text be brought into line with standard United Nations terminology by replacing, in the third line, the word "total" by the word "general" so that the phrase would reads "general and complete disarmament".
56. Mrs. HEERAN (Colombia) said that, in the seventh line of the Spanish text, the word "humanos" in the expression "derechos humanos fundamentales" should be deleted.
57. Mrs. GUEYE (Senegal) said that the text reproduced in document E/CN.6/L.704 had formed the subject of much discussion in the Working Group and that, thanks to the goodwill of the participants, a consensus had emerged. She hoped that, in a spirit of co-operation, the Commission would now be able to adopt it without engaging in a prolonged discussion.
58. The CHAIRMAN said that, if there were no objections, she would take it that the Commission wished to adopt by consensus the seventh (new) preambular paragraph in document E/CN.6/L.704, with the changes suggested by the representatives of Denmark and Colombia.
59. It was so decided.
60. Mrs. HIRLEMANN (France) said that her delegation would have liked to participate in the consensus but had to reserve its position on the seventh paragraph.
61. The CHAIRMAN announced that all the preambular paragraphs had now been considered and adopted. In the final version, the various paragraphs would, of course, be numbered appropriately. She invited any delegations which so desired to comment on the preamble as a whole.
62. Begum Tazeen FARIDI (Pakistan) said she thought that, since the preambular paragraphs had been considered separately, they would need editing. The Drafting Committee should make the preamble readable.
65. The CHAIRMAN assured the representative of Pakistan that the editing would be done. If there were no objections, she would take it that the Commission wished to adopt by consensus the preamble as a whole.
64. It was so decided.
E/CN.6/SR.665 page 7
65. The CHAIRMAN drew the Commission's attention to the text proposed for
article 21 in annex II to document E/CN.6/591 and to the draft amendment submitted . by Belgium (E/CN.6/L.700). She gave the Chair to Mrs. Gueye (Senegal), who had conducted the discussions in the Working Group.
66. Mrs. Gueye (Senegal) took the Chair
67. The CHAIRMAN invited the representative of the World Union of Catholic Women's Organizations to speak,
68. Mrs. HAMM-RIJSDIJK (World Union of Catholic Women's. Organizations) drew the
Commission's attention to the suggestion in document E/CN.6/NGO.272/Add.1, submitted
by two non-governmental organizations in Category I and five in Category II. In that
document an attempt had been made to find a way of using the information and.
recommendations coming from non-governmental organizations working at, grass-root level.
Referring to the statement made by the 110 the previous day, she noted that that
organization applied a provision enabling it to take advantage of that kind of
information and recommendations. She recommended to the members of the Commission
that the idea contained in document E/CN.NGO. 272/Add.1 should be included in the
Convention, in order to give non-governmental organizations concerned with the status
of women the opportunity to submit Information and recommendations in the interests
of the common goal.
69. Mrs. BOKOR-SZEGO (Hungary) reminded the Commission that the previous day she had.
expressed some concern with regard to the draft amendment submitted by Belgium
(E/CN.6/L.7OO), She had asked the representative of the Secretary-General to consult the Legal Adviser to ascertain whether the establishment of the new body for which that amendment made provision would not constitute a violation of the Commission's terms of reference or lead to an overlapping of competence with the Commission.
70. Mrs. BRUCE (Representative- of the Secretary-General) replied that she had consulted the Legal Adviser on that subject. He had stated that the establishment of the committee proposed in document E/CN.6/L.700 would not constitute a violation of the Commission's terms of reference, but could result in duplication between the Commission's work and the work of the proposed committee. It therefore behoved the Commission to take a decision forthwith.
71. Mrs. NIKOLAECA (Union of Soviet Socialist Republics) reminded the Commission that article 21 had already been the subject of a lengthy discussion. The information provided by the representative of the SecretaryGeneral showed that the setting up of the committee which was proposed in the Belgian amendment would result in duplication, At the present juncture it was well to remember the recommendations, made by the General Assembly with a view to avoiding duplication between bodies, which resulted
in unnecessary expenditure. With that consideration in mind, the USSR could not support the establishment of the proposed committee.
72. Moreover, if that committee were to be established and if its function was to
analyse the replies of Governments on the various subjects dealt with in the
Convention (women's living conditions, role of women in the political, social,
economic fields, etc.), it would be replacing the Commission. The Commission would
E/CN.6/SR.665 page 8
thus forego its powers with regard to the implementation of the Convention, and deal only with questions of minor importance in the future; its authority would as a result "be compromised and it would even lose its raison d'etre; that would "be the more regrettable inasmuch as it represented more states than the committee would represent. Moreover, the members of the committee would serve on it in a personal capacity, whereas the members of the Commission represented Governments and consequently had more important duties.
73. The Commission should, on the contrary,- choose the opposite course: it should become stronger precisely by undertaking to supervise the implementation of the Convention. That might take up more of its time and necessitate, new arrangements.
74. The sponsors of the draft amendment had certainly wished to promote the
implementation of the Convention and the Commission should be grateful to them, but
careful consideration showed that only the Commission could carry out the duties
envisaged, it had the advantage of representing different regions, which had their
own particular difficulties, and the merit of being able to prepare, despite that
diversity, common formulas in a language which was acceptable to everyone, as it had
once again proved by reaching consensuses on the texts adopted. Lastly, the
establishment of the committee proposed in the Belgian draft amendment would have
75. Mrs. BRUCE (Representative of the Secretary-General) pointed out that she had said that the proposed committee "could" lead to duplication; that was only a possibility and it was a matter for the Commission to decide. '
76. Mrs. GONZALEZ DE CUADROS (Colombia) said that her delegation had given careful
consideration to the text submitted by Belgium (E/CN.6/7OO), which was intended to
replace the first paragraph of the first alternative text of article 21. . That text
provided for the establishment of a committee composed of 'experts elected by
States Parties from among their nationals, who would serve in their personal capacity. According to paragraph 6 of that first alternative, the experts would be paid, by the States which had elected them; thus it would be difficult to say that they were serving in an individual capacity. If such a committee were to be established, its members should be paid by the United Nations so that they could act in an individual capacity with full independence.
77. A committee which was responsible for the implementation of the Convention in various countries would duplicate functions of the Commission. The representative of the Secretary-General had confirmed that the Legal Adviser had said that such a measure, while it did not constitute a violation of the Commission's terms of reference, might well cause overlapping between the Commission's functions and those of the committee,
78. Moreover, the establishment of such a committee could not but increase the number of committees already existing in the United Nations; it would necessitate the engagement of more staff, since the committee would require a specialized permanent staff, and would result in additional expenditure. The committee could of course be
serviced by the Commission's secretariat, Taut it was known that the latter was short of, staff and was experiencing difficulties in finding qualified people to undertake the work,
79. Her delegation thanked the Working Group and. the Belgian delegation for the efforts they had made, but it could not approve the establishment of a committee to do work which was analogous to the Commission's work. There was some question of putting an end to the. Commission's work and that was why it was necessary to try to keep it in being, to strengthen it and increase its possibilities of action in all the fields within its competence.
80. The Commission could be strengthened by making it responsible for the functions provided for in article 21. It could arrange to hold a special session every four years to consider the implementation and operation of the Convention. To that end, it would suffice to return to article 21 of the original text (E/CN.6/591, annex III, page 121). Paragraph 1 would remain unchanged. The second paragraph could read as follows: "Every four years after the entry into force of the present Convention, the Commission on the Status of Women, meeting in special session, shall consider the situation." Paragraph 3 of the original text would then be taken up again. Her delegation would submit a written amendment to that effect.
81. That system would offer the best means for strengthening the Commission. - The latter had considered the Convention, been concerned with the status of women and. endeavoured to improve their living conditions. It was therefore the Commission "which should analyse and observe how States complied with the provisions of the Convention.
82. Miss TYABJI (India), said that she also had some-doubts as to the usefulness of establishing the committee proposed in document E/CN.6/L.700, It seemed that the experts, in question would not be able to do much. In fact, some Governments would have difficulties in implementing the Convention, because of the customs and traditions in their countries. , It was impossible, for 12 experts to understand the problems faced by all the States Members of the United Nations.
83. The best solution would be to have a provision calling on Governments, when they submitted their reports to seek the assistance of specialized non-governmental organizations' and other competent bodies in their countries; they should also be asked to set up a national commission on the status of women. In fact, the checking of the implementation of the Convention should take place in the country itself.
84. The study of the reports did not in itself raise any serious difficulty. It could be undertaken by the Commission itself, meeting in a special session, or by a small group set up for that purpose. Taking up the idea put forward by the representative of Colombia, she said that it could be arranged, for instance, for a small working group of the Commission to meet 15 days before the session and to give an account of the most important questions dealt with in the reports of Governments.
E/CN.6/SR.665 page 10
85. Mr. LEHMANN (Denmark) said that his delegation did not share the views of the delegations which had just spoken, In his view, the alternative proposed in document E/CN.6/591, which provided for the establishment of a special committee, would have the effect of strengthening the Convention. The first responsibility for the implementation of a Convention lay with the States Parties to that convention and the best way to ensure observance of a convention was to establish a special committee composed of experts designated from among the nationals of the States Parties. There were many relevant precedents and mention might be made in particular of the arrangements made for that purpose by the Commission on Human Rights.
86. The proposal of the representative of Colombia was interesting and should be considered carefully. It would perhaps be possible to reach a compromise. It should, however, be pointed out that that proposal called for a special session of. the Commission, which was almost the same thing as a special session of a committee. At all events, during the session in question, the Commission or the committee would have to concern itself exclusively with the implementation' of the Convention. Moreover, the task which would be the responsibility of the committee of experts would be far removed from the Commission's regular activities. The Convention was a legal instrument and necessitated action by legal experts and machinery for strict surveillance. It sufficed to refer to the agenda of the present session. It was clear that the Commission's work was concentrated on the future. Once the Convention was adopted, it would pass out of the Commission's competence and have a. life of its own. His delegation's concern was for efficiency and he hoped that a compromise solution could be found.
87. Mr. EHSASSI (Iran) said that, had the Commission not existed, it would have been desirable to establish a body like the one proposed in the alternative to article 21. However, in the present circumstances, there was no reason to entrust the task of supervision of the implementation of the Convention to an independent body. The ad hoc Committee on the Restructuring of the Economic and Social Sectors of the United Nations System was considering the possibility of improving the social and economic services of the United Nations. Even if the Commission should decide to establish the proposed committee, it was not certain that the Economic and Social Council would confirm that decision, since the alternative proposed was not sufficiently convincing to persuade the competent bodies of the need to establish that committee.
88. Moreover, some time would pass before the Convention came into force and the establishment of such a committee, quite apart from all the considerations with respect to the proliferation of bodies and duplication, would not encourage States to accede to the Convention, because of the additional expenditure which such action would entail.
89. The Commission was perfectly capable of undertaking the task which it was proposed to entrust to the committee of experts and there was nothing to indicate that a special committee would succeed better than the members of the Commission in ensuring observance of the provisions of the Convention. That was why his delegation preferred the original text of article 21.
90. The representative of India had spoken of the need to set up national commissions
in the various countries.. Action of that kind would greatly encourage Governments -
to Implement the provisions of the Convention
91. Mrs. COENE(Belgium) noted that all delegations ,were anxious to prolong the life of the Commission. Her delegation, in accordance with the position adopted in the Committee on Restructuring, would also like to prevent the disappearance of the Commission. She feared however that the task of taking note of numerous reports was too engrossing for the Commission and that it would no longer have the time required for dealing with other fields falling within its competence.
92. The Convention Was a legal instrument. Its implementation was a legal task and
a committee of experts seemed much better placed to deal with it than the Commission. Many delegations had complained that the Commission's agenda was overloaded. What would happen if it had to study all the reports, of Governments?
93. The disadvantages of the experts being paid by their Governments had been pointed
out, but the fact that all the representatives serving on the Commission were also
paid by their Governments should not be overlooked. That argument therefore was
perhaps not as convincing as it appeared at first sight.
94. The reports of Governments would in any case have to be studied. If a special
committee did that work, it would hot perhaps cost much more than if the Commission
did it, since it had to be remembered that the committee would be composed of only
12 members, whereas the Commission had many more.
95. Lastly, it was hard to accept that a country Party to the Convention should be judged by a country which had not ratified the Convention and hence had not Subscribed to the obligations which it imposed. All the delegations present were: convinced that their Governments' would ratify the Convention, but it should not be overlooked that the composition of the Commission changed and there was no. guarantee that, it would always be composed of States that would have, ratified the Convention.
96. Her delegation therefore supported the alternative submitted by the Working. Group.
97. Mr. NASIER (Indonesia) said that his Government had already stated, in its reply, that the establishment of a special committee was unnecessary and that the Commission could deal with the new task of supervising the implementation of the Convention.
98. Mr. LEHMANN (Denmark) said he thought that delegations, before taking a. decision, should ask themselves how the Commission could undertake the task of supervising the implementation of a convention to which a member of its members would not be parties. According to a well-known democratic principle, those States which had ratified a convention had the right to be judged by other States parties but not by States which were not parties.
99. Miss TYABJI (India) said that, in Her view, it was not a question of passing a. judgement. The Commission would certainly consider, the reports with complete objectivity. If a Government had difficulties in implementing the Convention, its case would have to be discussed and it would have to be given assistance and
encouragement in its efforts. It was Improbable that the Government in question
would take umbrage at the advice given to it.
E/CN.6/SR.665 page 12
100. Begum Tazeen FARIDI (Pakistan) said that she shared the view of the representatives of Colombia, India and other countries which were opposed to the establishment of a special committee. It was true that the Convention was a legal instrument, but once it had been prepared, it was men and women in many countries who would have to participate in its implementation. The large number of replies received by the Secretary-General showed the interest aroused by the question of the elimination of all forms of discrimination against women. It was therefore to the implementation of the Convention that reference should be made and not to supervision or surveillance of States.
101. Mrs. VENEZI-COSMETATOS (Greece) said that she concurred in the views expressed by the representatives of Denmark and Belgium, since she considered that the surveillance of the implementation of a legal instrument could not be entrusted to States which were not parties to that instrument.
102. Mrs. B0K0R-SZEG0 (Hungary) said that she would like to reply to delegations which had just raised a serious legal problem, namely whether it was permissible for the Commission, of which some members might not be parties to the Convention, to supervise its implementation. There was a precedent for that. The ILO had set up
a Committee on Freedom of Association, which was authorized to know what was going on in States which were not members of the ILO.
105. It had also been pointed out that an expert paid by his Government could not take a position against that Government and hence that a lack of objectivity could result. That was another serious legal problem and that was why the expenses of the members of the committee, should it be established, should be financed from the United Nations budget.
1O4. Mr. EHSASSI (Iran) said that too much emphasis was being laid on the legal aspect of the problem. He did not see why the Commission should be regarded as an essentially political body and hence incapable of supervising the implementation of the Convention.. There was a great difference between the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination and the present Convention. In the case of the latter, it was the responsibility of Governments which was most important. Many national elements came into play; there were women's commissions and national commissions on the status of women whose task it was to encourage the authorities to observe the provisions of the Convention. The fact that it had been considered necessary to establish a special committee to ensure the implementation of the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination did not constitute a reason for following that procedure in the case of all the conventions drawn up under United Nations auspices.
105. Mrs. HUTAR (United States of America) pointed out that the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination worked well and hence there was no disadvantage in also setting up an independent committee in the present case, as the Belgian amendment proposed. Generally speaking, her delegation agreed with the representative of Denmark, but preferred to await the end of the discussion before taking a definite position. Perhaps delegations which favoured the establishment of a special committee and those which preferred to entrust the task of supervising the implementation of the Convention to the Commission would be able to reach a compromise.
The meeting rose at 6.50 p.m.