Letter dated 95/06/08 from the Permanent Representative of India to the United Nations addressed to the Secretary-General.
|UN Document Symbol||A/50/215|
|Convention||Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities|
|Subjects||Poverty Mitigation, Women in Development, Children, Youth, Persons with Disabilities, Environmental Protection, Drug Control, Terrorism|
12 June 1995
GENERAL ASSEMBLY SECURITY COUNCIL
Fiftieth session Fiftieth year
Items 70, 80, 86, 97 (a), 97 (i),
107, 109, 110, 112, 114 and 149
of the preliminary list*
GENERAL AND COMPLETE DISARMAMENT
CONVENTION ON THE PROHIBITION OF THE
DEVELOPMENT, PRODUCTION AND
STOCKPILING OF BACTERIOLOGICAL
(BIOLOGICAL) AND TOXIN WEAPONS
AND ON THEIR DESTRUCTION
COMPREHENSIVE REVIEW OF THE WHOLE
QUESTION OF PEACE-KEEPING
OPERATIONS IN ALL THEIR ASPECTS
SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT AND INTERNATIONAL
ECONOMIC COOPERATION: TRADE AND
DEVELOPMENT; INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION
FOR THE ERADICATION OF POVERTY IN
SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT, INCLUDING QUESTIONS
RELATING TO THE WORLD SOCIAL SITUATION
AND TO YOUTH, AGEING, DISABLED PERSONS
AND THE FAMILY
ADVANCEMENT OF WOMEN
INTERNATIONAL DRUG CONTROL
PROMOTION AND PROTECTION OF THE RIGHTS
HUMAN RIGHTS QUESTIONS
MEASURES TO ELIMINATE INTERNATIONAL
95-17469 (E) 140695 /...
Letter dated 8 June 1995 from the Permanent
Representative of India to the United Nations
addressed to the Secretary-General
I have the honour to transmit herewith the text of the Delhi Declaration
issued at the eighth meeting of the Heads of State or Government of the member
countries of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC), held
at New Delhi from 2 to 4 May 1995 (see annex).
I should be grateful if the text of the present letter and its annex is
circulated as an official document of the fiftieth session of the General
Assembly, under items 70, 80, 86, 97 (a) and (i), 107, 109, 110, 112, 114 and
149 of the preliminary list, and of the Security Council.
(Signed) Prakash SHAH
Delhi Declaration, issued at the eighth meeting of the
Heads of State or Government of the member countries of
the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation,
held at New Delhi from 2 to 4 May 1995
1. The Prime Minister of the Peopleâs Republic of Bangladesh, Her Excellency
Begum Khaleda Zia, the King of Bhutan, His Majesty Jigme Singye Wangchuck, the
Prime Minister of the Republic of India, His Excellency Mr. P. V. Narasimha Rao,
the President of the Republic of Maldives, His Excellency
Mr. Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, the Prime Minister of Nepal, the Rt. Hon.
Manmohan Adhikari, the President of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan,
His Excellency Mr. Farooq Ahmad Khan Leghari and the President of the
Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, Her Excellency
Mrs. Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga, met at the Eight Summit of the South
Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) at New Delhi, India, on
2-4 May 1995.
2. The Heads of State or Government expressed their satisfaction on the
achievements of the first decade of SAARC and resolved to celebrate its
completion of the first decade both in the individual member States and
collectively. They endorsed the proposal of the Council of Ministers to convene
a commemorative session of the Council on the theme: "SAARC - Vision of the
second decade" to identify the areas on which SAARC should focus in its second
3. The Heads of State or Government reaffirmed their resolve to intensify
regional cooperation in order to accelerate the process of promoting the welfare
and improving the quality of life of the peoples of South Asia. They reiterated
their commitment to the principles and objectives enshrined in the SAARC
charter, particularly, to the principles of sovereign equality, territorial
integrity, national independence, non-use of force and non-interference in each
otherâs internal affairs. They recalled their conviction that in an
increasingly interdependent world, regional cooperation was a dynamic instrument
for promoting economic prosperity, mutual understanding and good neighbourly
relations to achieve the objectives of peace and stability in South Asia. In
that context, a climate of peace and stability would contribute to the economic
Eradication of poverty in South Asia
4. The Heads of State or Government reaffirmed their commitment to the
eradication of poverty in South Asia, preferably by the year 2002 A.D. through
an agenda of action.
5. The leaders endorsed the recommendations of the Finance/Planning Ministersâ
Meeting held at Dhaka in July 1994, which recommended that a mechanism should be
set up that would act as a forum for the exchange of information on poverty
eradication programmes, in the context of the policies and strategies adopted,
particularly exchange of information on technologies that were relevant to
efforts at poverty eradication. They agreed that the process could be
strengthened by sharing and exchanging relevant studies carried out by
independent research institutions and experts. The mechanism would be in the
form of a three-tier institutional structure as recommended in the report and
would meet once a year. They noted that such a mechanism had been set up
enabling the procedures of exchange of information to commence and welcomed the
offer of India to host the first round of the three-tier mechanism.
6. The Heads of State or Government directed that the next meeting of Finance/
Planning Ministers consider the efficacy of such mechanism towards eradicating
poverty in the region and report on the progress achieved to the ninth SAARC
summit, through the Council of Ministers.
7. In that context, they decided to declare 1995 as the "SAARC Year of Poverty
8. Acknowledging that the abiding human qualities of dignity, creativity and
productive potential were eroded by chronic poverty, the Heads of State or
Government reiterated their commitment to empowering the poor for enhanced
growth consistent with human development and equity.
9. Recognizing that poverty was a complex multi-dimensional problem with
origins in both national and international domains, country-specific programmes
to tackle poverty and international efforts supporting national efforts and the
parallel process of creating a supportive international environment conducive to
economic growth and social development of developing countries, were crucial for
a solution to the problem. The World Summit for Social Development recognized
the need for focusing the attention of the international community on and
supporting the special needs of countries and regions in which there were
substantial concentrations of people living in poverty, in particular those in
South Asia and which faced serious difficulties in achieving social and economic
development. The Heads of State or Government reiterated their commitment to
eradicate poverty and noted with appreciation the outcome of the World Summit
for Social Development
10. The Heads of State or Government committed themselves to addressing the
fundamental causes of poverty and to provide for the basic needs of all. They
reaffirmed their commitment to work for guaranteeing the realization of the
rights of all, in particular those of the poor, to food, work, shelter, health,
education, resources and information.
11. The Heads of State or Government reaffirmed their commitment to provide
expanded opportunities to the poor to enhance their overall capacities and
improving living conditions and to adequate economic and social protection
during unemployment, disability and old age. While recognizing the need to
improve, expand and deregulate markets to promote sustained economic growth,
they felt it was essential to mitigate any negative features created by the
market forces and make all efforts to make the market friendly to the poor. The
Heads of State or Government reaffirmed the necessity to ensure that financial
systems and other public policies are geared towards poverty eradication and
warned against increase in socially divisive disparities.
12. The Heads of State or Government agreed that the Governments of SAARC
countries would have to play a lead role in promoting the support structures
needed for poverty eradication, including peopleâs institutions and
non-governmental organizations in the context of organizing the people and
fostering decentralization and local self-governance and encouraging
organization of the poor, in the context of their social and economic interests.
SAARC Preferential Trading Arrangement (SAPTA)
13. The Heads of State or Government noted with satisfaction that subsequent to
the signing of the Framework Agreement on the SAARC Preferential Trading
Arrangement (SAPTA) during their seventh summit at Dhaka in April 1993, the
first round of trade negotiations to exchange trade concessions among member
States have been completed. They directed that all necessary steps should be
taken to facilitate ratification by all member States and operationalize SAPTA
by the end of 1995 as mandated.
14. The leaders reiterated their firm belief that the operationalization of
SAPTA would herald the beginning of a new and significant process of regional
cooperation and would lend strength to SAARC as an institution for promoting the
welfare of the peoples of South Asia.
15. In view of the fast-changing international economic environment, creation
of major trading and economic groupings, establishment of the World Trade
Organization (WTO) subsequent to the successful conclusion of the Uruguay Round
of multilateral trade negotiations and unilateral economic liberalization
measures being adopted by member countries, the Heads of State or Government
emphasized the urgency of broadening and deepening cooperation within a specific
and rapid time-frame in the core areas of trade and economic relations in the
region. Those developments called for added urgency to achieve more progress
towards operationalization of SAPTA and intensification of cooperation to expand
regional trade. To that end, they decided that the "components" and "additional
measures" identified in articles 4 and 6 respectively of the SAPTA Agreement
should be implemented.
Integrated Programme of Action
16. The Heads of State or Government noted the progress made through the
Integrated Programme of Action covering a number of crucial areas and
17. The leaders welcomed the establishment of the SAARC Documentation
Centre (SDC) at New Delhi in May 1994 and the SAARC Meteorological Research
Centre (SMRC) at Dhaka in January 1995.
Women in development
18. Noting that increased political and social consciousness in the region had
highlighted the issues of elimination of gender-disparity and empowerment of
women, which were essential for their socio-economic development, the Heads of
State or Government underlined the urgency of addressing those issues through
further affirmative action.
19. The leaders endorsed the "Kathmandu resolution on women and family health",
adopted by the Ministerial Conference on Women and Family Health at Kathmandu in
November 1993, and expressed satisfaction that appropriate programmes were being
undertaken to implement the resolution at the national level by the member
20. The leaders noted the progress in the implementation of the plan of action
to mark 1991-2000 as the SAARC Decade of the Girl-Child, and requested the
Council of Ministers to conduct a comprehensive mid-decade review for
presentation to the ninth SAARC summit.
21. Recognizing the serious threat faced by certain groups of girl children in
especially difficult circumstances including those orphaned, disabled and
exploited, the leaders decided that an urgent appraisal of the situation of
those children be undertaken by the Council of Minister and specific
recommendations be presented to the ninth SAARC summit.
22. Considering that the exploitation of the girl child was a direct reflection
of the status of women in society, the leaders reaffirmed their resolve to take
necessary measures to eliminate all forms of discrimination against women and
23. The Heads of State or Government expressed satisfaction that the annual
reviews of the situation of children in SAARC countries for the years 1993 and
1994 had been completed, which indicated a reduction in infant mortality and
significant progress in the immunization programme for children in the region.
24. Recalling the mid-decade goals of the World Summit for Children, the Heads
of State or Government resolved to intensify their efforts both at the national
and regional levels for attainment of those goals.
25. The leaders welcomed that all member States had become party to the
Convention on the Rights of the Child. They felt that the recently held Cairo
International Conference on Population and Development in September 1994 and the
Copenhagen World Summit on Social Development in March 1995 had imparted fresh
impetus to the ongoing efforts for the survival, protection and development of
children in South Asia.
26. The Heads of State or Government endorsed the MalÃ© resolution on youth
adopted by the Ministerial Conference on Youth in South Asia held in the
Maldives in May 1994 and noted that the Conference had, inter alia, served to
focus attention on the status of the youth and the challenges faced by them.
The leaders noted with satisfaction that the agenda for action incorporated in
the resolution was being implemented by member States with a view to integrating
the youth into the process of national development. They noted with
satisfaction that the SAARC youth resolution had been adopted and the SAARC
youth awards scheme had been established.
27. The leaders expressed satisfaction on the implementation of the plan of
action to mark 1994 as the SAARC Year of the Youth in member States and resolved
to continue the momentum generated in member States.
Persons with disability
28. The Heads of State or Government noted with satisfaction that the
Ministerial Conference on Disabled Persons was held at Islamabad in
December 1993. They endorsed the Islamabad resolution on disabled persons and
the recommendations of the Conference and noted that the Conference had further
increased awareness among the peoples of South Asia regarding the needs and
problems of the disabled persons. They welcomed the activities and programmes
launched by the member States in pursuance of the resolution for the protection
and promotion of persons with disability.
29. The Heads of State or Government, recognizing that housing was a basic
right for all people and that, in addition to governmental efforts, private
initiatives of the people and non-governmental agencies should be supported,
reaffirmed their commitment to work towards the global objective of "Shelter for
All by the Year 2000".
30. The Heads of State or Government noted that illiteracy was one of the major
causes of poverty, backwardness and social injustices and called upon the member
States to initiate more concrete programmes aimed at eradicating illiteracy in
the region, preferably by the year 2000 A.D. They decided to observe 1996 as
the "SAARC Year of Literacy".
31. Reaffirming the need for a concerted action for the protection and
preservation of the environment, the Heads of State or Government expressed
their satisfaction over the formulation of a common position by member States
prior to the World Conference on Natural Disaster Reduction and the presentation
of the collective position at the Yokohama Conference. They recognized that
international cooperation was vital for building up national capabilities,
transfer of appropriate technology and promotion of multilateral projects and
research efforts in natural disaster reduction.
32. The Heads of State or Government expressed their deep concern at the
unabated degradation of the environment and recurrence of devastating natural
disasters. They also underscored the risks and dangers involved in overlooking
the challenge posed by those problems. They expressed their commitment to
implementing at all levels - national, bilateral, regional and global -
programmes for the protection and preservation of the environment and prevention
of its degradation. The Heads of State or Government stressed the importance of
continuing the ongoing SAARC activities in the field of environment.
33. The Heads of State or Government noted that although some work had been
carried out in the area of disseminating information on the problems of
environmental degradation and their impact on the region, progress in the
implementation of the recommendations of the SAARC regional study on the causes
and consequences of natural disasters and the protection and preservation of the
environment and the regional study on greenhouse effect and its impact on the
region, which were completed in 1992, had been slow. They stressed the
importance of effective and speedy implementation of the recommendations of the
two studies and requested member States to take all necessary steps without
further delay in vital areas such as sharing and developing scientific
capabilities to protect and manage the environment. They further directed the
Technical Committee on Environment to monitor the progress made in the
implementation of the recommendations of the two studies, and submit a report to
the ninth summit through the Council of Ministers.
34. The Heads of State or Government recalled the decisions expressed in the
Dhaka Declaration of April 1993 on the outcome of the United Nations Conference
on Environment and Development of June 1992 and reiterated the urgent need to
ensure the flow of new and additional resources that were adequate and
predictable to implement successfully the programmes of Agenda 21. They also
recalled the United Nations minimum target for developed countries of
0.7 per cent of gross national product as official development assistance, a
target which was yet to be approximated by most developed countries. The Heads
of State or Government also noted that international actions in the area of
environmental protection should be based on partnership and collective
endeavours and should reflect the principle enunciated in the United Nations
Conference on Environment and Development, of common but differentiated
responsibilities. Integral to such actions was the promotion of economic growth
in developing countries that was both sustained and sustainable and direct
action in eradicating poverty.
35. The Heads of State or Government also noted that the Commission on
Sustainable Development set up to monitor the implementation of the Rio
agreements had met thrice since their earlier meeting and expressed the hope
that the Commission would be able to facilitate the necessary flow of resources
36. The Heads of State or Government also noted that the Convention on
Biological Diversity and the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate
Change had both come into force and the first meetings of the conferences of
parties to each Convention had been held. Welcoming those developments, they
urged that developing countries should be assisted in meeting their commitments
under the Conventions. The establishment of the restructured Global Environment
Facility was a beginning in that direction. However, the Heads of State or
Government urged that funds of a much larger order would be necessary if the
needs of the Conventions were to be met.
37. The Heads of State or Government expressed serious concern on the spread of
terrorism in and outside the region and reiterated their unequivocal
condemnation of all acts, methods and practices of terrorism as criminal. They
deplored all such acts for their ruinous impact on life, property, socioeconomic
development and political stability, as well as on regional and
international peace and cooperation.
38. The Heads of State or Government once again emphasized that highest
priority should be accorded to the enactment of enabling legislation at the
national level to give effect to the SAARC Regional Convention on Suppression of
Terrorism. They urged member States that had not yet done so to enact
expeditiously enabling legislation at the national level to implement the
Convention and reiterated the need for a constant dialogue and interaction among
the concerned agencies of member States, including submission of periodic
recommendations to the Council of Ministers.
39. They underlined that cooperation among SAARC member States was vital if the
scourge of terrorism was to be eliminated from the region.
40. The Heads of State or Government recognized that drug abuse and drug
trafficking with its linkages with organized crime, illicit arms trade and
terrorism continued to pose a serious threat to the security and stability in
41. While noting the efforts made by Member States as well as the regional
cooperation under way to combat that pernicious trade, the leaders stressed the
urgency of further strengthening the process of cooperation.
42. The leaders welcomed the ratification of the SAARC Convention on Narcotic
Drugs and Psychotropic Substances by all member States and entry into force of
the Convention in September 1993. They urged all member States to take
necessary follow-up action for effective implementation of the Convention.
Science and technology
43. The Heads of State or Government reiterated that cooperation in the area of
science and technology should be accorded high priority. Noting that some
progress had been made towards establishment of networking arrangements,
inter alia, in the fields of biotechnology, genetic engineering, energy
modelling techniques and low-cost housing and building technologies, the leaders
called for further acceleration of that process.
44. Reiterating their earlier resolve to promote further people-to-people
contact through increased involvement of the peoples of South Asia in the
process of regional cooperation, the Heads of State or Government noted with
satisfaction that such interaction had been taking place through various fora
both within and outside the SAARC framework and had contributed to the promotion
of mutual understanding in the region.
45. The leaders noted that the Association for Persons of the Legal Communities
of SAARC Countries (SAARCLAW) had been accorded recognition by SAARC. The
leaders hoped that SAARCLAW would play an effective role in fostering closer
cooperation among the legal communities in the region.
46. The leaders noted with satisfaction that the SAARC Chamber of Commerce and
Industry (SCCI) had been functioning satisfactorily. They expressed hope that
SCCI and its constituent units in the member States would do their utmost to
promote trade and economic cooperation in the SAARC region. The leaders
commended SCCI for disseminating information on the scope, content and
potentials of the SAARC Preferential Trading Arrangement (SAPTA) among the
business community in the region.
47. The Heads of State or Government expressed satisfaction that the SAARC Visa
Exemption Scheme was being implemented smoothly and had enhanced the scope of
South Asian Development Fund (SADF)
48. The Heads of State or Government endorsed the establishment of a threewindow
South Asian Development Fund (SADF) with the merger of SAARC Fund for
Regional Projects and the SAARC Regional Fund and a third window for social
development and infrastructure development.
Projection of collective positions
49. The Heads of State or Government recalled their decision taken at the
seventh SAARC summit regarding development of collective positions in
international forums on such issues as would enhance the international profile
of South Asia and would enable the member States to articulate their position on
them more effectively. They noted that the Council of Ministers had formulated
a procedure for the projection of SAARC collective positions at such
50. They noted with satisfaction that pursuant to the decision at the seventh
SAARC summit, collective positions had been formulated by member States and
presented at the World Conference on Natural Disaster Reduction and the World
Summit for Social Development. The leaders also noted with satisfaction that a
SAARC collective position would also be presented at the Fourth World Conference
on Women at Beijing in September 1995.
Security of small States
51. The Heads of State or Government, reaffirming their commitment to
universally accepted principles and norms relating to the sovereign rights and
territorial integrity of all States, recognized that small States, because of
their particular problems, required special measures of support for safeguarding
their independence and territorial integrity. They reiterated that real
protection of small and weaker States should be firmly rooted in the rule of
law. This, they stressed, should be ensured by all countries either severally
or collectively through the pursuit of appropriate actions.
International political developments
52. The Heads of State or Government noted that the end of the cold war had
resulted in fundamental changes in the political landscape. It was therefore
important that a new idiom be found to address new concerns. The disappearance
of the confrontation between the two Power blocs presented an opportunity
towards building a genuine consensus for a new international order.
53. The Heads of State or Government had wide-ranging discussions on the
current global political trends and future prospects, particularly those issues
that concerned South Asia. In that context, they reiterated their deep
commitment to the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations
and reaffirmed their resolve to strengthen the United Nations as the central
instrument for peace, security, disarmament, development and cooperation among
the nations of the world. While pledging their support to all constructive
initiatives aimed at strengthening the United Nations, the leaders emphasized
that such initiatives must be undertaken with the sole objective of rendering
the United Nations and all its organs more democratic, efficient and effective
and not to limit the focus of its attention to a narrow and isolated range of
54. Appreciating the role of some SAARC member States in United Nations peacekeeping
operations in various parts of the world, the Heads of State or
Government felt that such participation had contributed towards maintenance of
peace and security in the world.
55. The Heads of State or Government reiterated their firm commitment to the
principles and objectives of the Movement of Non-Aligned Countries and
underlined the continued validity and relevance of these principles and
objectives in the contemporary world. They recalled the stabilizing role played
by the Movement in global affairs since its inception. They expressed their
deep conviction that the Movementâs innate strength equipped it to continue to
play a most constructive role in laying the foundations of a new world order
based on the rule of law, non-discrimination, equity and cooperation.
56. The Heads of State or Government noted that while the international
community had successfully created the norm against chemical and biological
weapons, it had, unfortunately, been unable to do the same with regard to
nuclear weapons. The leaders were convinced that more needed to be done and at
a far greater pace. Reiterating that the utmost priority was to be given to
nuclear disarmament, given the danger posed by nuclear weapons, they urged the
Conference on Disarmament to negotiate an international convention prohibiting
the use or threat of use of nuclear weapons under any circumstances and to
undertake negotiations for the complete elimination of all nuclear weapons
within a time-bound framework.
57. The Heads of State or Government expressed their strong commitment to the
promotion and protection of human rights. They agreed to take all necessary
steps to achieve that objective.
International economic and social issues
58. The Heads of State or Government welcomed the successful conclusion of the
Uruguay Round of multilateral trade negotiations and reaffirmed their commitment
to implement fully and as scheduled the Final Act of the Uruguay Round of
multilateral trade negotiations. They also welcomed the coming into existence
of the WTO and expressed the hope that it would help to expand international
trade, particularly that of the developing countries. They reaffirmed the
immediate need to elaborate policies to enable developing countries to take
advantage of expanded international trading opportunities, in the context of the
full implementation of the Round. They called upon all countries to refrain
from any unilateral measure not in accordance with international law, the
Charter of the United Nations and enlightened regionalism and globalism that
created obstacles to trade relations among States and thereby impeded the full
realization of social and economic development.
59. Recognizing that the promotion of mutually reinforcing broad-based
sustained economic growth on a global scale, as well as a non-discriminatory and
multilateral rule-based international trading system, provided a basis for
social development, the Heads of State or Government called for the
establishment of an open, equitable, cooperative and mutually beneficial
international economic environment. They also called for a reduction of trade
barriers and promotion of expanded access to global markets.
60. The Heads of State or Government reaffirmed their commitment to safeguard
the basic interests of workers. They called upon countries to refrain from
erecting trade barriers in the guise of promotion and protection of workersâ
rights. They deplored the tendency to impose any conditionalities on
international trade, whether as a "social clause" or as the "environmental
clause", while reiterating their commitment to ensuring workersâ rights as well
as protection of the environment.
Special measures for the least developed and land-locked countries
61. The Heads of State or Government noted with deep concern that economic
growth in the least developed countries and land-locked countries was not
satisfactory and emphasized the need to take special measures for accelerating
the process of development. They reiterated the need to fulfil the
internationally agreed aid targets for the developing countries and the least
developed countries. They emphasized on the need for exceptional finance to
facilitate implementation of economic reform programmes in SAARC countries.
Dates and venue of the ninth meeting of the SAARC Heads of State or Government
62. The Heads of State or Government gratefully accepted the offer of the
Government of Maldives to host the ninth SAARC summit. The dates would be
finalized in consultation with member States.
63. The Heads of State or Government of Bangladesh, Bhutan, Maldives, Nepal,
Pakistan and Sri Lanka expressed their deep appreciation for the exemplary
manner in which the Prime Minister of India had discharged his responsibilities
as Chairman of the meeting. They expressed their profound gratitude for the
warm and gracious hospitality extended to them by the Government and the people
of the Republic of India and for the excellent arrangements made for the