Summary record of the 18th meeting : 3rd Committee, held on Tuesday, 20 October 1987, New York, General Assembly, 42nd session.
FORTY-SECOND SESSION Official Records*
Tuesday, 20 October 198 7
at 10 a.m.
SUMMARY RECORD OF THE 18 th MEETING
Chairman: Mr. DIRAR (Sudan)
AGENDA ITEM 88: NATIONAL EXPERIENCE IN ACHIEVING FAR-REACHING SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC CHANGES FOR THE PURPOSE OF SOCIAL PROGRESS
AGENDA ITEM 89: QUESTION OF AGING
AGENDA ITEM 90: POLICIES AND PROGRAMMES INVOLVING YOUTH
AGENDA ITEM 93: IMPLEMENTATION OF THE WORLD PROGRAMME OF ACTION CONCERNING DISABLED PERSONS AND THE UNITED NATIONS DECADE OF DISABLED PERSONS
AGENDA ITEM 94: CRIME PREVENTION AND CRIMINAL JUSTICE
AGENDA ITEM 141: INTERREGIONAL CONSULTATION ON DEVELOPMENTAL SOCIAL WELFARE POLICIES AND PROGRAMMES
'This record is subject to *** Corrections should be MM under the *** o' member of the dele gallon concerned within one week of the dale of publication to the Chief of the Official Records Editing Section, room DC2-7502 United Nation Plaza and incorporated in a copy of the record
correnons will he issued alter the and of the session in a separate feseicle for each Committee
87-56317 7174S (E)
Distr. GENERAL A/C.3/42/SR.18 30 October 1987 ENGLISH ORIGINAL: FRENCH
A/C.3/42/SR.18 English Page 2
The meeting was called to order at 10.15 a.m.
AGENDA ITEM 88: NATIONAL EXPERIENCE IN ACHIEVING FAR-REACHING SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC CHANGES FOR THE PURPOSE OF SOCIAL PROGRESS (A/42/56-E/1987/7, A/42/57-E/1987/8> A/C.3/42/L.3, A/42/411)
AGENDA ITEM 89: QUESTION OF AGING (A/42/567, A/42/3; A/C.3/42/L.4)
AGENDA ITEM 90: POLICIES AND PROGRAMMES INVOLVING YOUTH (A/42/595; A/42/3)
AGENDA ITEM 93: IMPLEMENTATION OF THE WORLD PROGRAMME OF ACTION CONCERNING DISABLED PERSONS AND THE UNITED NATIONS DECADE OF DISABLED PERSONS (A/42/551, A/42/561, A/42/3)
AGENDA ITEM 94: CRIME PREVENTION AND CRIMINAL JUSTICE (A/42/453, A/42/3)
AGENDA ITEM 141: INTERREGIONAL CONSULTATION ON DEVELOPMENTAL SOCIAL WELFARE POLICIES AND PROGRAMMES (A/C.3/42/5)
1. Mr. DUEHRING (German Democratic Republic) said that his country continued to
support the activities undertaken by the United Nations to improve the living
conditions of the youth and integrate them into social development, particularly
those of the International Youth Year, which had helped to bring closer together
young people of different political opinions and religious or ideological beliefs,
all seeking to create a world where all nations would live in peace. In
March 1987, an international youth seminar had been held in Berlin, attended by representatives from socialist and capitalist countries, non-aligned countries and national liberation movements, the purpose of which was to encourage dialogue and strengthen mutual understanding among the youth of the world. The event had provided an occasion for recalling the support of the youth of the German Democratic Republic for the Palestinian people and for the struggle of the peoples of southern Africa.
2. The German Democratic Republic believed that promoting the participation of
young people in the conduct of public affairs connoted the implementation of all
their human rights: the right to education, to work, to recreation and culture and
to a happy life in peace. Thus, in the German Democratic Republic, whose
Government believed that social welfare wan a matter for the State and not for
public charity, concrete policies had been developed which had effectively ruled
out the marginalization of social groups. The State devoted particular attention
to the problems of the old and the disabled, who were the focus of the social
welfare programme it was endeavoring to implement in compliance with the
International Plan of Action on Aging and the World Programme of Action concerning
Disabled Persons. The many special educational programmes and employment
opportunities it offered were extremely helpful in integrating and ensuring
economic security for the physically or mentally disabled. For them, as for all
citizens, all medical treatment and care was free and they received special pensions. Old people could also continue to work after retirement and thus play a
part in the further development of society without forfeiting their pensions.
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3. Mrs. DIEGUEZ (Mexico) said that the objectives stated in the Declaration on Social Progress and Development were still valid and Car from having been achieved. Indeed, the world situation appeared to have worsened with the resurgence of armed conflicts, inequalities based on sex, race or atonality and the persistence of colonialism.
4. As Mrs. Anstee, Director General of the United Nations Office at Vienna recently commented, there had been no economic recovery in the overwhelming majority of developing countries in 1986. In the Latin American and Caribbean region, debt problems, scarcity of capital and the drop in commodity prices had forced most countries of the region to cut back on their social welfare policies, with serious effects on their population, particularly the most vulnerable groups. In that connection, Mexico was gratified by the role played by UNICEF in intervening with Governments and the major international financial agencies to ensure that adjustment policies took full account of the human factor.
5. The developing countries were trying to recover from the crisis by making structural adjustments sensitive to human need?. However, those efforts would be futile unless the rich countries acknowledged their own responsibility for economic development. Her delegation therefore welcomed the adoption at the Interregional Consultation recently held at Vienna of the Guiding Principles for developmental social welfare policies and programmes in the near future, but regretted that the Consultation had not produced a firm commitment to North-South co-operation and that the implementation of those principles was still problematical.
6. Mexico was gratified by the revival of interest in youth shown by Governments and international organizations during International Youth Year, as indicated in the Secretary-ceneral's report (A/42/595) and supported the proposals in paragraph 10 of the report, in particular those calling for a comprehensive review of the global situation of youth by the Centre for Social Development and Humanitarian Affairs every four years. For its part, Mexico had maintained the Co-ordination Committee established in 198 5 with the object of following up on the activities undertaken as part of International Youth Year. Her country was encouraging the democratic participation of young people in public affairs and the realization of their fundamental rights, in particular, the right to live in peace in a just world.
7. As the Secretary-General had indicated in his report (A/42/567), all countries
in the world would soon have aging populations and the phenomenon would be more
pronounced in the developing countries. Consequently, preventive programmes should
be launched now and, as the Secretary-General suggested, should assign a broader
role to non-governmental organizations in implementing the International Plan of
Action on Aging. Her Government was now planning surveys on the social, economic
and political consequences of aging. In June 1988, it would be hosting the
fourteenth International Gerontology Congress, which would be attended by
representatives of government and non-governmental organizations mainly from Latin
America and the Caribbean. The purpose of the conference was to exchange
experience and develop recommendations to be submitted to the Commission for Social
Development and the General Assembly.
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8. Mrs. ALVAREZ (France), referring to the Interregional Consultation on Developmental Social Welfare Policies and Programmes, said that it had increased awareness of the social changes which had taken place in the past 20 years and of the relationship between growth and social development. At the meeting, emphasis had been placed on the urgent need to rethink social welfare policies and to consider basic questions such as the role of the family, the place of women in society and the needs of old people and the disabled, population groups which were frequently disadvantaged. It was significant that the final document had been adopted by consensus, that the Commission for Social Development had been asked to monitor implementation of the recommendations it contained and that the authority of the Centre for Social Development and Humanitarian Affairs in social matters had been strengthened. Now that it had been restructured, the Centre should be better able to supervise the conduct of social welfare programmes and to evaluate the resources necessary to implement them.
9. She recognized that it was difficult to establish priorities between programmes. However, streamlining measures could be envisaged such as, inter alia, having longer intervals between surveys and questionnaires, refraining from organizing two major events in any one year, making greater use of the expertise of the functional committees of the Economic and Social Council, increasing co-operation with the non-governmental organizations and putting the Centre in charge of co-ordinating activities within its area of competence undertaken by institutions of the United Nations and by the specialized agencies.
10. The Third Committee should itself to be more careful and should, inter alia, refrain from asking the Secretary-General for annual reports on questions which could be the subject of in-depth reports submitted every few years and from calling for more expert meetings or world conferences. Unless the Committee was able to streamline its work, the Secretariat would be constrained to make choices which might not suit all States.
11. On the subject of crime prevention and criminal justice, she reaffirmed the importance of the United Nations Congress on the Prevention of Crime and the Treatment of Offenders and stressed the key role of the Committee on Crime Prevention and Control.. With regard to programmes, she proposed that the emphasis be placed on a few activities, in particular, research concerning justice for minors, prevention of juvenile delinquency and crime victims, application of the norms drafted by the United Nations in the field of criminal justice and establishment of a world-wide information network on crime prevention and criminal justice.
12. Her delegation had read with interest the report of the Secretary-General on the implementation of the World Programme of Action concerning Disabled Persons (A/42/561) and the recommendations of the Stockholm meeting of experts; the two
documents highlighted the inadequacy of efforts made in three major fields, namely, prevention, rehabilitation and equalization of chances. In the view of her delegation, the issue of the disabled was one of national solidarity and a major element of the social policy to be carried out by States. On the other hand, it was not a human rights issue warranting the drafting of further legal instruments.
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(Mr. Alvarez, France)
13. The French Government's main aim was to integrate the disabled, whether at school or at work, to as to provide them with living conditions that were as similar as possible to those enjoyed by the rest of the population.
14. With regard to the report of the Secretary-General on the question of aging (A/42/567), she pointed out that the number of aging persons was growing steadily in industrialized societies and that the same would gradually happen in the developing countries where the problem would be more severe. There again, collective solidarity must come into play so as to ensure that the burden of providing social welfare for such persons was shared by all the social partners.
15. The French Government had been working steadily to deal with the difficulties of the aging on the one hand, to enable such people to remain as long as possible in their familiar surroundings and, on the other hand, when placement in an institution became inevitable, to provide appropriate facilities and care for them.
16. Finally, receiving foreigners and ensuring their social and professional integration was part of the French social welfare system and was a continuing concern of the French Government.
17. Mr. MARWAT (Pakistan), referring to item 88, noted with satisfaction that, despite its financial difficulties, the United Nations continued to give priority to social development, which remained a prerequisite for the exercise of fundamental rights and freedoms. He drew attention to the need for prompt implementation of the international strategy for the Third United Nations Development Decade, stating that the guiding principles recently adopted in Vienna offered a good basis for improving the Jiving standard of future generations. Pakistan was fully conscious of the problems caused by changes in the social situation in the world - urbanization, industrialization and under-employment, and, in the third world, the problem of illiteracy - and had embarked on a five-point programme designed to accelerate socio-economic development.
18. Turning to agenda item 89, he pointed out that Pakistan continued to implement the recommendations contained in the International Plan of Action on Aging and that it had drawn up a plan of action to enable its aging population to enjoy a life of fulfillment in their own families and communities. The media had been asked to educate young people in that area by teaching them to give physical and psychological support to their elders. A scheme of grants for voluntary social welfare agencies dealing with senior citizens had been approved.
19. The activities concerning youth undertaken by the United Nations had been an outstanding success. Pakistan had participated fully in celebrating International Youth Year, in particular, it had organized seminars, workshops, festivals and recreational trips for young people at the national and regional level. It attached special importance to the problems of young people and to the role they could play in society and in promoting peace and development. It had allocated a sizeable proportion of its budget to youth-oriented projects.
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(Mr. Marwat, Pakistan)
20. Pakistan accorded high priority to the prevention of disability, to rehabilitation of the disabled and to giving them equal opportunities. The recommendations of the World Programme of Action concerning Disabled Persons had been integrated in its sixth five-year development plan and the Government had (established a special committee, hsaded by the Minister of Health, Special Education and Social Welfare, to implement the programme concerning disabled persons. Budgetary allocations for activities for disabled persons had increased considerably over the past few years and a special fund for the welfare and rehabilitation of the mentally retarded and physically disabled had been instituted.
21. Turning to item 94, he stressed the need for international co-operation in the area of crime prevention and control. It was necessary to address the socio-economic inequities which were often the underlying cause of crime, and to assist the deve oping countries to acquire the personnel and equipment needed for crime prevention. Finally, with respect to criminal justice, it was necessary to take into account the special conditions of each country and their political, economic, social, cultural and religious diversity. The Government was committed to making Pakistan an Islamic welfare State and the criminal justice programme it had adopted was an important step in that direction.
22. Mr. KITTIKHOU (Lao People's Democratic Republic), referring to agenda
item 90, emphasized the importance of youth participation in shaping the future of ***. In Laos, the youth, united under the Lao People's Revolutionary Youth
animation, were considered as a dynamic component of society. Having taken part in the national liberation war against colonialist and imperialist forces, young people were now participating in the political, economic, social and cultural life of the country and were devoting all their efforts to the implementation of the new economic management mechanism. Anxious to promote understanding between peoples and peaceful coexistence between States, the Lao People's Revolutionary Youth Organization was strengthening its relations with the youth organizations of socialist and friendly countries throughout the world in order to establish a broad exchange of experience and facilitate the realization of the objectives of the International Youth Year.
23. However, the conditions of youth in many parts of the world left much to be
desired. Consequently, priority must continue to be given to the formulation and
implementation of measures guaranteeing to young people the exercise of their right
to education and work in conditions of peace.
24. In his report entitled "Highlights of the world social situation 1987J recent
developments and current issues", the Secretary-General indicated that the economic
and social situation in many regions of the world remained troublesome. The
obstacles to economic and social progress of peoples must be removed and it was
important, in that egard, to study the experiences and results obtained by other
countries. In that spirit, the Laotian delegation was prepared to join in the
co-sponsorship of any draft resolution relating to that issue.
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(Mr. Kittikhoun, Lao People's Democratic Republic)
25. With respect to agenda item 93, the Laotian delegation noted that there was increasing concern for problems of disabled persons. Although progress had been made in that area, much remained to be done. The international community must take measures to ensure the prevention of disability, the rehabilitation of handicapped people and equalization of their opportunities. The Voluntary Fund for the United Nations Decade of Disabled Persons played a useful role in that connection and deserved the Full Support of the international community.
26. Mrs. ITO (Japan) considered the inclusion of item 141 in the agenda to be very opportune. Since policies of social welfare were directly linked to the improvement of living conditions, it was urgent to tackle those problems in a comprehensive manner, at the national and international levels. In that context, the Japanese delegation welcomed the fruitful results of the Interregional Consultation on Developmental Social Welfare Policies and Programmes, recently held in Vienna.
27. with respect to agenda item 89, the Japanese representative made the observation that in the year 202 5, the global population aged 60 and above would be three times greater than in 1980. Inspired by the International Plan of Action on Aging and with that prospect in view, Japan had stepped up its efforts to restructure its overall socio-economic system. In particular, attention had been focused on the elaboration of social welfare policies encouraging self-help in order to establish a balanced system of social security, particularly in terms of cost-effectiveness. Her delegation emphasized the relevance of the Secretary-General's report (A/42/567), which was a helpful source of inspiration and also described the financial situation of the United Nations Trust Fund for Aging. The idea of a declaration on the rights of the aged should be further explored.
28. The representative of Japan welcomed the results of the Global Meeting of Experts to Review the Implementation of the World Programme of Action concerning Disabled Persons at the Mid-Point of the United Nations Decade of Disabled Persons. The 30 recommendations adopted at that meeting were certainly useful, but probably too ambitious. Her delegation hardly saw the merit of the plan to draft an international convention on the elimination of all forms of discrimination against handicapped persons.
29. In 1982, Japan had formulated the Long-Term Plan for Measures for Disabled Persons. In 1987, a body composed of experts and disabled persons had adopted for the seccnd half of the Decade of Disabled Persons a new set of measures founded on the concepts of rehabilitation and prevention of disabilities. Programmes for the disabled were also being carried out with the co-operation of the non-governmental organizations concerned. In order to extend its activities for disabled people to the world at large, Japan was providing active technical and medical assistance to developing countries, receiving trainees from abroad, convening international conferences and holding sports contests. Unfortunately, owing to a lack of funds, the Voluntary Fund for the United Nations Decade of Disabled Persons, which had
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(Mrs. Ito, Japan)
played a central role in the implementation of the World Programme of Action concerning disabled persons, had been forced to curtail or decrease its assistance.
30. With respect to agenda item 90, the representative of Japan pointed out that the healthy development of youth and its active participation in society were essential elements in the attainment of development and peace. She mentioned the various plans and programmes undertaken by the Japanese National Co-ordinatinq Committee, set up on the occasion of the International Youth Year. The Japanese Government was determined to continue its efforts in that direction. In particular, it attached great importance to the promotion of mutual understanding through international exchanges of youth. Since 1965, some 7,500 younq people had been sent to 34 countries, where they had been deeply appreciated.
31. With respect to agenda item 94, the international community welcomed the achievements of the Seventh United Nations Congress on the Prevention of Crime and the Treatment of Offenders. In the conviction that the exchange of views and experiences in that field among Member States would be useful, Japan had recently organized two international training courses and an international seminar on various aspects of crime and treatment of offenders.
32. The representative of Japan drew attention to the activities of the United Nations Office at Geneva. She hoped that that Office could develop more creative strategies and activities on the national, regional and international level and that it could overcome its continuing financial difficulties by more efficient and proper use of funds entrusted to it.
33. Miss BPPANGE (Cameroon), speaking on agenda item 90, recalled the major activities undertaken by the United Nations to ensure the involvement of young people in the development process of their own countries and in programmes of international co-operation. She was pleased to note that follow-up activities of the International Youth Year were under way at the national level.
34. Her country accorded the highest priority to activities related to youth, which constituted over 52 per cent of the Cameroon population. Those activities were aimea at ensuring the equal participation of youth in national development. In Cameroon, education was compulsory and either free or heavily subsidized by the Government. Expenditure on education was a very significant percentage of the budget and there had been a 75 per cent increase in the number of schools between 1975 and 1985. Despite the economic crisis, the Cameroon Government was striving to finance, at least partially, the studies of Cameroonians abroad in pursuit of scientific and technical education, which were of crucial Importance for the country's development. In public and para-public institutions, positions were reserved for Cameroonian graduates to ensure that economic development was carried out essentially by Cameroonian youth.
35. In order to avoid the massive exodus of youth from the rural to the urban
areas, the Government of Cameroon had taken measures designed to bring education
and improved health care to rural areas. The Government was also taking steps to
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(Miss Effange, Cameroon)
build roads] and improve water supply in the villages and was sending technical experts into the country to introduce modern technology to increase food production. The emphasis was on the establishment of medium-sized agricultural industries with a view to creating job opportunities for youth.
36. Much still remained to be done at the regional and international levels to increase co-operation in youth policies. It was for that reason that Cameroon supported the appeal of the Secretary-General for the strengthening of technical co-operation in the agencies of the United Nations system which dealt with youth-related activities. In spite of the current financial crisis, the delegation of Cameroon fully endorsed an increase in the resources of the United Nations Youth Fund to meet the increasing requests from Governments for assistance in implementing youth policies and programmes. Resources allotted to such programmes represented a good investment for the future. It also supported the strengthening of channels of communication between the United Nations, youth and youth organizations and collaboration between Governments in the exchange of information, research and the promotion of youth issues in general. It hoped that the Secretary-General would prepare a progress report on the issue for submission to the General Assembly at its forty-third session.
37. Mrs. DU Yong (China), speaking on agenda items 141 and 94, was pleased by the success of the Interregional Consultation on Developmental Social Welfare Policies and Programmes. Since the adoption in 1969 of the Declaration on Social Progress and Development, considerable progress had been made in that area. Infant mortality rates had fallen, average life expectancy had risen while nutritional standards and the availability of health care and education had improved. However, the rapid increase in world population, which currently exceeded 5 billion, represented a major challenge. In many countries there was still much to be done to reduce unemployment, underemployment, illiteracy and to improve health care, and eliminate poverty and malnutrition. Faced with such challenges, the participants in the Consultation had reaffirmed their commitment to strengthen co-operation and take practical action at the international, regional and national levels to raise the material and spiritual standards of living of all members of society, while respecting human rights and fundamental freedoms.
38. Referring to the manifold activities of the United Nations in the social field, she emphasized that social and economic development must be regarded as indivisible. However, experience had shown that economic growth did not automatically lead to social development and did not necessarily solve social problems. It was therefore important in the formulation of developmental social policies and programmes to take into account the right of all members of society to live in dignity and freedom consistent with the principle of social justice and the equitable *** of national wealth. Moreover, social welfare should not he a burden on economic development and its role was not to provide compensate****** and relief to passive recipients. Its function in development should be **** and emphasized with a view to mobilizing the maximum potential of the entire population, including specific groups such as women, youth, the elderly and the disabled.
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(Mrs. Du Yong, China)
39. The Chinese Government attached great importance to social welfare and social development and to the enhancement of the material and cultural living standards of all the people. In China, employee salaries and peasant incomes continued to increase. In addition, employees benefited from a very elaborate system of social welfare, including, in particular, retirement pension, unemployment insurance, free medical service, maternity leave and a range of additional benefits and subsidies. Economic growth and social development had brought practical benefits to all members of society. The increase in the number of jobs had absorbed surplus labour in the rural areas and was the most tangible result. The Government had always given special consideration to certain social groups, such as women, youth, the elderly and disabled, and had helped them to play a full role in national construction.
40. In the fields of crime prevention and criminal justice, her delegation believed that it would be appropriate to convene the United Nations Congress on the Prevention of Crime and the Treatment of Offenders once every five years. Experience had shown that the several congresses held in the past, particularly the last two congresses, had not only produced positive results for the study of criminal tendencies but had also enabled various countries to exchange experiences. Her delegation hoped that the relevant United Nations bodies would actively complete preparations for the Eighth United Nations Congress. It welcomed the adoption by the Seventh Congress of a series of *** documents, particularly the United Nations Standard Minimum Rules for the Administration of Juvenile Justice, also referred to as the Beijing Rules. Juvenile crime was one of the social problems that caused the international community concern and the Beijing Rules represented a point of reference for the Member States of the United Nations. It was the responsibility of the Organization and its Member States to find ways of encouraging the implementation of that document.
41. Mrs. OTUNBABVA (Union of Soviet Socialist Republics), speaking on agenda items 88, 90, 94 and 141, said that the world was confronted by serious social problems} the Secretary-General's report (A/42/512) had convincingly described how acute and important they were. Her delegation fully supported the conclusions of that report. In social development, each State chose its own approach. For its part, the Soviet Union, since the October Revolution, had made radical social changes. It had eliminated inequality and the exploitation of man by man, economic backwardness and illiteracy and had created social and State structures which had made it possible to solve its major social problems. The Government would not stop there however but was currently engaged in a process of restructuring and transforming society which, through democratization and openness, would decisively accelerate social development.
42. For example, the Soviet Union was engaged in a campaign to overhaul its educational system. In that Endeavour, the human factor played a basic role and hundreds of thousands of teachers throughout the whole country were attempting to invent new methods of stimulating the full development of the personality and creativity of each child. At the same time, the State was seeking the means of improving the system of medical care by soliciting the public's views on a document
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(Mrs. Otunbaeva, USSR)
of great social and humanitarian importance which described the basic rationale for the development of the country's health services. Very substantial resources would be invested in the implementation of that national programme.
43. In its process of restructuring and accelerated economic and social development, the Soviet Union was taking advantage of the experience of other countries. In the educational field, for example, it was carefully studying the experience of job training in Cuba, of aesthetic instruction in Japan and Bulgaria, and of specialized teaching in Prance. It was also seeking to exchange experience in the field of social and economic change. In 19B8 a United Nations seminar on the question of national experience in achieving far-reaching social and economic changes for the purpose of social progress would be held in the Soviet Onion. Her delegation supported the strengthening of the role of the United Nations in the social field and particularly the action of the Vienna Centre for Social Development and Humanitarian Affairs.
44. The guidelines which had been adopted during the Interregional Consultation on Developmental Social Welfare Policies and Programmes represented an important step towards the achievement of the goals and objectives of the Declaration on Social Progress and Development and it was to be hoped that they would be adopted by the General Assembly.
45. International Youth Year had drawn the attention of the international community to the problems of young people. The United Nations should play an important role in strengthening co-operation between States with a view to solving those problems. It would be useful, for example, for the General Assembly in 1990 to hold a special session on the questions of youth, as it had done in 1985. Unfortunately, in 1987 the Secretariat had not prepared a report on the question of channels of communication between youth organizations and the United Nations, as it had done at the previous session of the General Assembly. The United Nations should not cut itself off from the daily concerns and the activities of youth organizations. Informal meetings at Geneva were the best means of developing and multiplying those *** of communication. Similarly, the Soviet delegation supported the proposal to prepare a legal instrument dealing with questions relating to the situation of young people and which would lay down the principles underlying solutions to their problems.
46. Miss ABDUL RAHMAN (Democratic Yemen) said that the rights of young people were closely linked to the right of peoples to self-determination and to the struggle for peace. To recognize the importance of the participation of youth in building the future and the role to be played by young people in all fields was also to recognize that a present marked by unemployment, illiteracy, sickness, racism, oppression and discrimination did not promise a radiant future. The United Nations, through the General Assembly and the Economic and Social Council, had gradually become aware of that problem and hence the international community now urged that every effort should be made to favour the participation of young people in development in peace and in international co-operation.
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(Hiss Abdul Rahman, Democratic Yemen)
47. The delegation of Democratic Yemen reaffirmed the importance of the conclusions and recommendations which appeared in the Secretary-General's report (A/42/59S) and appealed to the international community to accord increasing importance to studies and co-operation in all fields of concern to young people. It also reaffirmed the importance of co-ordination between the various programmes undertaken in that field, the strengthening of national committees and of the links which those committees maintained between themselves and with the United Nations system.
48. In Democratic Yemen young people were considered to be a national resource. Their struggle, their abilities and their unshakeable faith in the people had enabled them to participate, through many sacrifices, in the accession of Democratic Yemen to independence. Those same qualities were today enabling young people to take part in the building of a new Yemeni society. In spite of the country's meagre resources, the party and the State attached great importance to youth and did so in accordance with the actual Constitution of the country. The Young People's Union, which organized the participation of young people in development, was represented in the Presidium of the Supreme People's Council and in all local people's assemblies, side by side with other mass organizations and trade unions.
49. Her delegation was concerned at the alarming rise in crime in the world but stressed that in Democratic Yemen, thanks to the untiring efforts of the Government, the rates of criminality had been brought down to very low levels. Moreover, the State had adopted modern methods for the treatment and rehabilitation of delinquents. The legisl*** of Democratic Yemen was based on the principle that sanctions were designed not to punish but to cure. Finally, the delegation of Democratic Yemen reaffirmed the importance of strengthening the role of the United Nations in the field of crime prevention and penal justice.
50. Mr. AL-KALBASH (Libyan Arab Jamahiriya) said that the celebration in 1985 of World Youth Year revealed the importance which the United Nations had always attached to young people and their participation in development and international co-operation. Aware that in all countries young people represented the social, economic and political future, **ibya had modified its educational system in order to take into account the intellectual and physical abilities of young people and had undertaken many activities on their behalf in the fields of culture and sport.
51. Libya had always supported all the plans and programmes undertaken to tackle
the problem of aging, particularly the Vienna Plan of Action. In Libya elderly
people had no special problems because of the powerful social links which joined
all the members of the family and because of the existing social system which
protected elderly people and guaranteed them the right to retirement, to free
social services and to health care. Furthermore, there were social agencies for
the protection of elderly persons without family.
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(Mr. Al-Kalbaah, Libyan Arab Jamahiriya)
52. Every society must devote special attention to the problems of the disabled. The International Year of the Disabled, held in 19P1 following an initiative by the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, had been one of the most important events ever organized by the United Nations. Libya had set up a national committee for the protection of the handicapped, had promulgated a law recognizing that such persons had specific rights and had established for than a large number of rehabilitation centres. Like many other countries, Libya had been involved in colonial wars, which had led to a large number of disabled persons. The international community must recognize that fact and compel the countries responsible for the explosions and minefields to pay compensation and to provide maps and information which would make it possible to eliminate the dangers which still remained. Finally, his delegation reaffirmed the importance of technical co-operation between developed and developing countries in the provision of aid to the disabled. It appealed to the international community and the United Nations to continue the implementation of the World Programme of Action and to provide the developing countries with the necessary means to that end.
53. Libya had adopted a system of social defense based on volunteers who had helped to ensure order and security in the country and to cut down crime. Because of its traditions, its religious faith and its socialist and popular regime, Libyan society could provide each individual with a livelihood which took away the temptation to commit crimes.
54. Mr. GARVALOV (Bulgaria) said he was encouraged by the efforts of the international community to promote social progress and development. The primary orientation of those efforts was clearly indicated in the Declaration on Social Progress and Development adopted in 1969. The main objective was to eliminate poverty, under-development, illiteracy, malnutrition and disease, scourges still prevalent at the end of the twentieth century. The recent International Conference on the Relationship between Disarmament and Development had indicated that disarmament offered the possibility of releasing additional resources to overcome those scourges. His delegation fully supported that approach.
55. The Interregional Consultation on Developmental Social Welfare Policies and Programmes held recently in Vienna was another beneficial factor for international co-operation in the social field. The results of that Consultation, and especially the Guiding Principles set forth in document E/CONF.80/10 indicated that the majority of Member States were ready to promote co-operation in the social field in the spirit of the 1969 Declaration. In that regard, the Commission on Social Development had an important role to play, and its agenda should be broadened, as should that of the Commission on the Status of Women.
56. His delegation welcomed the fact that the Centre for Social Development and Humanitarian Affairs had become the focal point for United Nations activities in the social field. The work of the Organization in that field required substantial funds which, in the light of the current situation of the Organization, entailed more efficient and rational planning and management of projects. Although extrabudgetary resources could provide additional opportunities in that regard,
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(Mr. Garvalov, Bulgaria)
there was nevertheless a need to maintain a proper balance between those resources and the resources of the regular budget, in such a way as to respect the priorities set by Member states.
57. He gave his assurance that his country was, as always, ready to contribute to international action in the field of Social and humanitarian co-operation.
58. Mrs. SHERMAN-PETER (Bahamas) noted that the full integration of youth in development was a challenge for all Governments, and particularly for developing countries, which faced serious difficulties linked with debt and the balance of trade. In The Bahamas, the situation was complicated by its archipelagic configuration, which obliged it to duplicate programmes in many islands.
59. The Government of The Bahamas, applying the recommendations in the Guiding Principles for Developmental Social Welfare Policies and Programmes for the benefit of youth, had undertaken numerous activities, focused in particular on employment, education and information. Her Government's policy of economic diversification and expansion was aimed at generating permanent jobs for youth, especially in banking, tourism, agriculture and fisheries. Special emphasis was placed on education. In The Bahamas, education was free and compulsory for all children up to 16 years, and scholarships were awarded on the basis of merit.
60. In conjunction with various ministries and non-governmental organizations concerned with youth, the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Community Affairs, established in 1977, encouraged youth to determine policies that affected them directly. In turn, the enterprises promoted activities designed to familiarize youth with the business world.
61. At the international level, The Bahamas continued to participate in many activities. In 1987, it had hosted, jointly with the Commonwealth Youth Programme, a seminar on drug education. In addition, The Bahamas had established a National Youth Advisory Council, which served as a channel of communicative between the United Nations, youth and youth organizations in The Bahamas.
62. The Bahamas considered that the organizations of the United Nations system, including UNESCO, ILO and UNDP, had an important role to play in realizing the objectives of the International Youth Year. The same applied to the United Nations Fund for Drug Abuse Control, which was assisting many developing countries, including The Bahamas, in financing drug-abuse prevention programmes.
63. The Bahamas acknowledged the efforts of the Centre for Social Development and Humanitarian Affairs to provide Governments with the necessary support in the field of youth, and regretted the resource constraints under which the Centre was functioning.
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64. Mr. MALAGA (Peru) said that a balance sheet of the world economy would indicate that the world possessed the necessary financial, scientific and technical resources to eliminate hunger and poverty. The sole obstacle to integrated development was the inefficient use of those resources. In the developing countries, the reduction in public expenditure stemming from the adjustment policies those countries had been required to apply had led to an increase in abject poverty and infant mortality, especially among the most vulnerable groups.
65. The Interregional Consultation on Developmental Social Welfare Policies and Programmes had drawn up a number of objectives to be attained in the near future and had suggested the adoption, at the national, regional and interregional levels, of measures which constituted a genuine challenge. Nevertheless, the implementation of those recommendations was a priority task which could not be postponed if Governments were to avoid the phenomenon of social rejection, leading also to a recurrence of terrorism.
66. Peru was quite aware of the danger which the problem of aging posed to development. Unfortunately, the institution of the necessary means to ensure the social welfare of aged persons represented an investment that was beyond the reach of many developing countries facing more pressing problems. That was why it was necessary to allocate more resources to the United Nations Trust Fund for Aging, which financed training courses in the field of aging, such as those organized in Peru by the International Center of Social Gerontology. In that regard, his delegation shared the concerns expressed by the Secretary-General concerning the need to build up the resources of the Fund. The Commission on Social Development had an important role to play in so far as it was called upon to carry out the appraisal and implementation of the International Plan of Action on Aging.
67. Turning to the question of the disabled, he said that Peru intended to examine closely the recommendations put forward by the meeting of experts to evaluate the implementation of the World Programme of Action concerning Disabled Persons so as to benefit from the experience acquired and the research carried out in that field.
68. Peru faced the difficult task of restructuring its economy in the face of a deteriorating social situation, extreme poverty and malnutrition in certain *** of the country, and the violence that inevitably ensued. His Government had assumed its responsibilities or the protection of the country's vulnerable groups and hoped, in return, that the international community would be able to fulfill its own responsibilities by pursuing practical programmes of co-operation.
The meeting rose at 12.55 p.m.