Summary record of the 15th meeting, : 3rd Committee, held on Monday, 23 October 1989, New York, General Assembly, 44th session.
General Assembly 15th meeting
Monday, 23 October 1989
FORTY-FOURTH SESSION Monday 23 October 1989 at 3 p.m.
Official Records New York
SUMMARY RECORD OF THE 15th MEETING Chairman: Mr. KABORE (Burkina Faso)
EXPRESSION OF SYMPATHY IN CONNECTION WITH THE RECENT EARTHQUAKES IN CALIFORNIA AND CHINA
AGENDA ITEM 90: WORLD SOCIAL SITUATION (continued)
AGENDA ITEM 91: TWENTIETH ANNIVERSARY OF THE PROCLAMATION OF THE DECLARATION ON SOCIAL PROGRESS AND DEVELOPMENT (continued)
AGENDA ITEM 92: NATIONAL EXPERIENCE IN ACHIEVING FAR-REACHING SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC CHANGES FOR THE PURPOSE OF SOCIAL PROGRESS (continued)
AGENDA ITEM 93: POLICIES AND PROGRAMMES INVOLVING YOUTH (continued)
AGENDA ITEM 97: INTERREGIONAL CONSULTATION ON DEVELOPMENTAL SOCIAL WELFARE POLICIES AND PROGRAMMES (continued)
AGENDA ITEM 99: QUESTION OF AGING (continued)
AGENDA ITEM 101: IMPLEMENTATION OF THE WORLD PROGRAMME OF ACTION CONCERNING DISABLED PERSONS AND THE UNITED NATIONS DECADE OF DISABLED PERSONS (continued)
AGENDA ITEM 102: CRIME PREVENTION AND CRIMINAL JUSTICE (continued)
AGENDA ITEM 113: FAMILIES IN THE DEVELOPMENT PROCESS (continued)
AGENDA ITEM 89: IMPLEMENTATION OF THE PROGRAMME OF ACTION FOR THE SECOND DECADE TO COMBAT RACISM AND RACIAL DISCRIMINATION (continued)
AGENDA ITEM 100: ELIMINATION OF ALL FORMS OF RACIAL DISCRIMINATION (continued)
AGENDA ITEM 105: IMPORTANCE OF THE UNIVERSAL REALIZATION OF THE RIGHT OF PEOPLES TO SELF-DETERMINATION AND OF THE SPEEDY GRANTING OF INDEPENDENCE TO COLONIAL COUNTRIES AND PEOPLES FOR THE EFFECTIVE GUARANTEE AND OBSERVANCE OF HUMAN RIGHTS (continued)
This record is subject to correction.
Corrections should be sent under the signature of a member of the delegation concerned
Records Editing Section. Room DC2-750.
2 United Nations Plaza, and incorporated in a copy of the record.
Corrections will be issued after the end of the session, in a separate corrigendum for each Committee.
89-56510 1703S (E)
Distr. GENERAL A/C.3/44/SR.15 27 October 1989
The meeting was called to order at 3.15 p.m.
EXPRESSION OF SYMPATHY IN CONNECTION WITH THE RECENT EARTHQUAKES IN CALIFORNIA AND CHINA
1. The CHAIRMAN, on behalf of the Committee, expressed sympathy in connection
with the recent earthquakes in California and China.
AGENDA ITEM 90: WORLD SOCIAL SITUATION (continued) (E/CN.5/1989/2 and ST/ESA/213)
AGENDA ITEM 91: TWENTIETH ANNIVERSARY OF THE PROCLAMATION OF THE DECLARATION ON SOCIAL PROGRESS AND DEVELOPMENT (continued) (A/44/116-E/1989/15 and Corr.1 and A/44/116-E/1989/15/Add.1)
AGENDA ITEM 92: NATIONAL EXPERIENCE IN ACHIEVING FAR-REACHING SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC CHANGES FOR THE PURPOSE OF SOCIAL PROGRESS (continued) (A/44/79-E/1989/8, A/44/86-E/1989/14, A/44/448 and A/44/449)
AGENDA ITEM 93: POLICIES AND PROGRAMMES INVOLVING YOUTH (continued) (A/44/387)
AGENDA ITEM 97: INTERREGIONAL CONSULTATION ON DEVELOPMENTAL SOCIAL WELFARE POLICIES AND PROGRAMMES (continued) (A/44/206-E/1989/69 and Corr.1 and A/44/206-E/1989/69/Add.1)
AGENDA ITEM 99: QUESTION OF AGING (continued) (A/44/3, A/44/420 and A/44/420/Add.1)
AGENDA ITEM 101: IMPLEMENTATION OF THE WORLD PROGRAMME OF ACTION CONCERNING DISABLED PERSONS AND THE UNITED NATIONS DECADE OF DISABLED PERSONS (continued) (A/44/406 and A/44/406/Rev.1)
AGENDA ITEM 102: CRIME PREVENTION AND CRIMINAL JUSTICE (continued) (A/44/400)
AGENDA ITEM 113: FAMILIES IN THE DEVELOPMENT PROCESS (continued) (A/44/407)
2. Mr. KOEGH (Special Representative of the Secretary-General for the Promotion of the United Nations Decade of Disabled Persons) said that greater interest and commitment on the part of the international community was necessary in order to ensure further and much needed progress on issues concerning the disabled. Action must replace talk and resources had to be provided to make action possible. There must be strong co-operation between Governments and national organizations of the disabled, and awareness campaigns must be organized among the disabled. Such efforts were costly only in terms of initiative because they would help the disabled to become productive and contribute to national development. No nation could afford to ignore their potential.
3. More must be done by the way of prevention. Most cases of disability could be prevented through health and other measures, which were less costly than the consequences of not providing them. Rehabilitation efforts must also be encouraged
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and supported, and he particularly commended the work of the International Labour Organisation in that respect. The developing countries, which were short of what was required, should concentrate on co-operation in using local resources to provide the equipment and components needed to rehabilitate the disabled.
4 in many situations, ideological differences had been set aside to promote a common goal, and that must also be the case in helping the disabled. He commended the useful work that had been done for the disabled in Afghanistan, who needed a great deal more help, however, from the international community. International humanitarian efforts could also promote understanding and peace.
5. Everything must be done to ensure equality for the disabled by providing them, inter alia, with access to information. Unfortunately, sign language and faille were often unavailable to the deaf and the blind. Anyone could become disabled and all Governments should follow the example of some by enacting legislation prohibiting discrimination against the disabled so that they could pursue their lifestyles and careers and develop their full potential. That was what equalization of opportunity meant. Bilateral assistance programmes should also include aid to the disabled,
6. Lastly, he urged the international community to increase its contributions to the Voluntary Fund for the United Nations Decade of Disabled Persons. In 1988 the total contributions to that Fund, from nine countries, totalled only $91,000, which was inadequate.
7 Mr. GOLEMANOV (Bulgaria) said that the 1989 Report on the World Social Situation (ST/ESA/213, E/CN.5/1989/2) showed that a number of serious social problems remained without an adequate solution. Despite the differences between States on social policies, the experience of some could prove useful to others. National policies must draw on the experience gathered by others and use the potential of international co-operation. The Declaration on Social Progress and Development was still the main document on which the efforts of the international community should be based and international co-operation should be maximized to ensure its implementation. He appreciated the report of the Secretary-General on the implementation of the Declaration (A/44/116-E/1989/15 and Corr.1) as a means of improving the methods used to achieve the objectives of the Declaration. Periodic reports on its implementation were useful and necessary, and a more comprehensive approach should be adapted to such subjects as trade and finance as factors in international co-operation for social progress and development. He disagreed, however, with the report's conclusion that the Declaration had served its purpose. The Declaration was an action-oriented document and even a cursory look at the world situation made it clear that it was far from having achieved its objectives.
8 The Declaration also remained relevant because it emphasized that progress in the social and humanitarian spheres depended upon the successful solution of all other major global problems confronting mankind. If States could co-operate in tackling such acute problems as disarmament and regional conflicts, they could surely co-operate in tackling the equally important problems in the social sphere.
(Mr. Golemanov. Bulgaria)
9. Only through comprehensive international co-operation could the world's full potential be mobilized to improve the social situation. The United Nations had a special responsibility in that respect. One of the things it must do was to enhance the role and significance of the Centre for Social Development and Humanitarian Affairs, which was expected to make proposals for strengthening the legal basis of international co-operation in the social sphere and adopt recommendations on how to solve the world's social problems. The Centre should become a forum for exchanging national experience and practical co-operation in achieving social progress, for studying priorities and for long-term planning that would promote the objectives of the Declaration.
10. Mr. HARYADI (Indonesia) said that the social and economic conditions in the world were marked by great advances arising from new discoveries in science and technology but also by unfortunate setbacks resulting from environmental neglect and unstable economic relationships. The lack of resources to take the necessary corrective action had its severest impact on the most vulnerable groups in society, and the problems were compounded in developing countries by the debt crisis. He whole-heartedly endorsed the analysis, conclusions and recommendations in the Secretary-General's report (A/44/387).
11. Indonesian youth were aware of their own responsibilities and the need to seek solutions to the problems facing youth throughout the world. They were active in numerous international bodies dealing with such matters as youth leadership training, promoting youth tourism, seminars on co-operatives, prevention of drug abuse, environmental protection and health. On the national level, young people were encouraged to become involved in national development activities in the areas of environmental protection, narcotics and drug abuse, family planning, co-operatives, sports and rural development.
12. His Government had also focused attention on the problem of unemployment among youth in Indonesia and throughout the world and stressed the relationship between education and employment. It particularly stressed programmes to provide motivation for further development of the agro-industry and to improve training and skills in that field so as to increase employment opportunities.
13. Ms. VUKI (Fiji), referring to the report of the Secretary-General on policies and programmes involving youth (A/44/387), agreed that it was essential to define the notion of youth as a prerequisite to formulating national and international youth policies. She supported the Secretary-General's recommendation that the Centre for Social Development and Humanitarian Affairs should conduct a survey of young peoples' attitudes to the United Nations in order to strengthen their involvement in the Organization's activities. Her delegation welcomed the .suggestion that critical research on youth should be a continuing activity.
14. Her Government's growing concern for youth issues had been reflected in its support in 1985 for General Assembly resolutions 40/14, 40/15, 40/16 and 40/17 on youth matters. It therefore welcomed the recommendation that the tenth anniversary of the International Youth Year in 1995 should be the occasion for launching global
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(MR. Vnki, Fiji)
activities with a view to reinforcing youth-related concerns and identifying future strategies, evaluating guidelines and implementing youth policies for the year 2000 and beyond.
15 Although youth problems tended to vary from country to country, there were common problems, such as drug abuse and the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) and other sexually-transmitted diseases, and environmental degradation, which could be dealt with only through international co-operation. Her Government, with its Ministry of Youth and Sport, endeavoured to control those social problems through education, using the mass media to keep young people and the public informed. It supported the work of non-governmental organizations. However, progress was subject to financial and other constraints and her delegation therefore supported the proposal that Member States should increase their funding for youth-related programmes.
10 There was a growing realization of the global impact of environmental degradation and its effects on youth, a problem requiring the involvement of every country. Her delegation was particularly concerned about continued nuclear tests in the Pacific, as a result of which the people of Rongelap Atoll of the Micronesian group were today experiencing severe effects of radiation. Her Government and the Pacifi peoples, especially the young people, urged that the Pacific should be nucle****ee and should not become a dumping ground for nuclear and other wastes. Her delation appealed to the international community, especially the developed countries, to help the Pacific peoples in their efforts to keep their environment sustainable and healthy.
17 Lastly, her delegation supported the Secretary-General's recommendation in document A/44/387 that the General Assembly should provide new directives and mandates to support Secretariat units or specialized agencies in tackling AIDS, drug abuse, degradation of the environment and other critical issues in the light of their negative impact on the lives and future prospects of young people.
18 Mr.van den HURK (Netherlands) said that a subject of particular concern to young people was their lack of independence in the years before they reached adulthood. Their dependence was apparent in the problems of the environment, the position of girls and boys in society, and homosexuality.
l9. In the first place, young people nowadays were particularly concerned about environmental issues and wished to play their part. Interaction between youth organizations and the authorities should be encouraged in order to lessen the dependence of young people on decision-making by the generations in power. The United Nations System-wide Medium-term Environmental Programme (UNEP/GCSS.1171/Add.1) rightly emphasized the importance of international co-operation in tackling environmental problems and the involvement of young people was the best basis for a stable long-term environmental policy.
20 with regard to the position of boys and girls in society, young people were unable to influence their own lives, express themselves or develop in their own
(Mr . van den Hurk, Netherlands)
way. They were held back by tradition which kept them dependent within the family and confined them to the traditional roles of girl and boy. Alternatives to traditional patterns should be brought to their attention so that they could explore and assess the options available and choose the way of life that suited them best. The Netherlands Government had developed an information campaign to encourage them to make independent choices.
21. The question of youth and homosexuality was dominated by a lack of
understanding. That was clearly illustrated in the report of the Economic and
Social Council entitled "Legal and Social Problems of Sexual Minorities"
(E/CN.4/Sub.2/1988/31). Young men and women discovering their sexual preference
during puberty depended on information and the understanding of people around
them - parents, teachers and other young people. All people should be free to live according to their nature. Information should therefore be given to parents, teachers and others to give homosexuality a respectable place in society.
22. By adopting General Assembly resolution 43/94 entitled "Question of Youth" in
I98R, the Committee had substantially rationalized its work-load, by providing for
greater efficiency in monitoring policies and programmes affecting young people and
the promotion of global awareness of youth issues. It was important to co-ordinate
youth policies throughout the United Nations system to ensure better implementation
of guidelines. Since the stimulus given during the International Youth Year,
attention to the functioning of communication channels between the United Nations
system and young people and youth organizations seemed to be decreasing and the
time had come for a thorough evaluation. The Geneva Informal Meeting, the main channel of communication, was being undermined by a lack of commitment, decreasing participation and an absence of concrete results. The Youth Information Bulletin was now issued only three times a year instead of quarterly and remained of poor quality. He trusted that the improvements referred to in paragraph 68 (c) of the report (A/44/387) would be successful. There was scarcely any direct contact between the United Nations and young people and between youth organizations at the regional and national levels. Co-operation was becoming a mere formality. It was essential to use the existing consultative structures for non-governmental youth organizations in the United Nations system and the Centre for Social Development and Humanitarian Affairs should give priority to developing the active involvement of those organizations.
28. Despite the recommendations in operative paragraph 14 of General Assembly resolution 43/94, the number of youth representatives in national delegations to the (General Assembly and other relevant United Nations meetings or conferences dealing with youth had not increased. He wondered why the Secretary-General had not mentioned youth representatives in his report. The Centre for Social Development and Humanitarian Affairs should play a crucial role both in inter-agency co-operation and in the participation of youth and youth organizations in the implementation of youth policies and programmes. Unfortunately, the Centre's human and financial resources were decreasing and it was essential for the Youth Fund to continue to be included in the United Nations Pledging Conference.
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24. Mr. PULZ (Czechoslovakia) said that he welcomed the results achieved by the United Nations Centre Cor Social Development and Humanitarian Affairs in encouraging international co-operation on crucial issues of social development despite financial stringency. He was particularly pleased that that body was enhancing the role of the Organization on matters of social policy and development.
25. His delegation was convinced of the need for the submission of periodic reports on the world social situation and supported the conclusions adopted, on the basis of the report in document E/CN.5/1989/2, by the Centre and by the Economic and Social Council in resolution 1989/72. The report rightly stressed the changes taking place in the world and the fact that the social consequences of such persistent phenomena as poverty, famine, illiteracy, environmental deterioration, drug abuse and the arms race had an impact that transcended national boundaries and therefore required a comprehensive approach to social problems within the context of the requirements of international peace and security.
26. An important part of the report dealt with the critical social situation in Africa and the international community must do more to alleviate that situation. The next report should deal more extensively with the situation there.
27. Despite some progress, much still remained to be done in implementing the Declaration on Social Progress and Development, and international co-operation to that effect must be intensified. He agreed with the conclusions in the Secretary-General's report on the implementation of the Declaration (A/44/116). The Declaration still had an important role to play in the field of social development, in which problems such as unemployment, hunger, poverty and violations of human rights and social justice were often becoming more severe. He fully supported Economic and Social Council resolution 1989/71 on the achievement of social justice.
28. In his own country the Declaration was given due attention. There were successes in implementing it, but also failures and those were being dealt with in the context of economic restructuring and democratization. His country's concept of development was predicated on recognition of the interdependence of economic and social development and the need to ensure the active participation of all citizens in economic life. His country strove for social equality and justice, but without a distorted and levelling concept of social guarantees that undermined the principle of proper recompense for work done. The purpose of restructuring in his country was to counteract negative social developments and to harness unused capacity in the social development field.
29. Effective international co-operation in solving social problems was necessary. Views and experience that could be used on local or international levels must be exchanged and he commended in that connection the Secretary-General's report in document A/44/86.
30. Mr. RASTAM (Malaysia), referring to the 1989 Report on the World Social
Situation (E/CN.5/1989/2), said that, in the face of the current serious social and
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(Mr. Rastam. Malaysia)
economic challenges, wider international co-operation was essential and the United Nations should be given appropriate responsibility and resources. The report could Provide a sound basis for preparation of the International Development Strategy for the Fourth United Nations Development Decade.
31. His delegation concurred with the views on the report expressed in the statement by the Group of 77 to the Economic and Social Council at its first regular session in May 1989. His delegation would like to see future reports contain adequate and serious conclusions to the chapters, as well as a general concluding chapter summarizing the main points discussed in the report. A report with brief and cursory conclusions, or no conclusions at all, would not help Governments to formulate or modify policies. Since the report appeared only every four years, it might also be useful if the Secretariat could prepare a brief preliminary outline in the intervening period.
32. His delegation was concerned about the statement on page 25 of the report that "Excess dietary fat results from the over-consumption of animal sources of protein, such as beef and pork, of saturated fat from such edible oils as palm oil, palm-kernel oil and coconut oil and of dairy products" which, taken with the preceding sentence, gave the unfortunate impression that the three edible oils singled out were among the major causes of certain illnesses. Malaysia was a major producer of palm oil and palm-kernel oil and a number of other developing countries produced coconut oil as well. Over the past few years, several campaigns had been launched in developed countries to discredit palm oil products as a major health hazard. There was no scientific evidence to support those allegations and scientists from his country had found clear scientific evidence to refute them and to prove the nutritional value of palm oil. His delegation therefore expressed its regret and dismay at the sweeping and unfounded statement in the report, which only further discredited palm oil and palm-kernel oil.
33. In connection with the Declaration on Social Progress and Development, his delegation agreed with the Secretary-General's comment in document
A/44/116-E/1989/15 that a number of main objectives had still not been universally realized, and urged that efforts should be made to implement them within the framework of the International Development Strategy for the Fourth United Nations Development Decade.
34. His delegation noted with interest the report in document A/44/86. Malaysia had achieved considerable progress in social and economic development over the past two decades, which had helped to raise the standard of living of the people and improve their quality of life.
35. On the question of youth, his delegation agreed with the recommendations in the Secretary-General's report in document A/44/387 and with the concern expressed regarding the growing vulnerability of young people to the drug problem. It noted in particular the proposal on the urgent need to explore new and improved ways of monitoring and reporting on progress with the guidelines for further planning and Follow-up in the field of youth. Bearing in mind the importance of adequate
English Page 9
(Mr. Rastam, Malaysia)
response from Governments, his delegation was willing to work with others in considering any other approaches which could provide a satisfactory solution to the problem on the basis of the Secretary-General's proposal.
36. Young people represented a country's major source of energy and vitality and their contribution to nation-building was essential for national development, particularly in developing countries. The proper channelling of their energy and talent could help to prevent idleness and frustration and steer them away from degrading activities such as drug abuse and crime. The Malaysian Government had provided ample incentive for young people to participate in the development process.
37. The predicament of physically or mentally disabled people, whose numbers were increasing, was particularly grave in the developing countries. His delegation noted with concern the Secretary-General's comment in his report (A/44/406) on the slow progress made during the United Nations Decade of Disabled Persons and the lack of commitment by Member States. His delegation was seriously studying the Secretary-General's appeal to Governments to contribute or increase their contributions to the Fund for the United Nations Decade of Disabled Persons. His Government continued to provide welfare facilities for disabled persons and to encourage participation by the public in promoting and providing new services and facilities. Disabled persons were given financial assistance and vocational training and encouraged to undertake self-employment.
38. He noted in the report on aging (A/44/420) that there would be 1 billion elderly people by the year 2025, more than 70 per cent of them in the developing countries. Malaysia endorsed the Secretary-General's conviction that collective international efforts should be pursued towards the goals of the International Plan of Action on Aging. His delegation welcomed the recommendations of the second review and appraisal by the Commission for Social Development at its thirty-first session and subscribed to the ideals of providing and facilitating good, secure and affordable care for the aging. In view of the relatively long life span after retirement, programmes were being undertaken in Malaysia under the auspices of the Ministry of Welfare Services in the areas of welfare, health, housing, training and financial security. In that connection he referred to the seminar on population aging, held at Kuala Lumpur in July 1989.
30. In connection with the Secretary-General's report on Families in the Development Process (A/44/407), his delegation supported the recommendation that the year 1994 should be proclaimed International Family Year, as well as the other main recommendations. The family structure in Malaysia was gradually changing as a result of modernization and development and it was important for the family to be recognized as a unit and a factor in enhancing social progress.
40. Mr. LIU Xinsheng (China) said that, despite the recent political detente between the East and the West, the economic gap between the North and the South was widening. The stagnant or declining economies of most of the developing countries had had serious social consequences, such as lower per capita income and educational levels and soaring unemployment and poverty. While the "1989 Report on
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(Mr. Liu Xinsheng. China)
the World Social Situation" provided detailed and extremely useful information on the world social situation, China hoped that the relevant organs of the United Nations would in the future devote even more attention to the social development of the developing countries, so that the next report on the world social situation might not only present further in-depth studies on the causes of the deterioration of the social situation in developing countries, but also put forward concrete proposals for its improvement and point to effective ways for promoting social development throughout the world.
41. The Secretary-General's report, entitled "Second review and appraisal of the implementation of the International Plan of Action on Aging" and the conclusions drawn at the thirty-first session of the Commission for Social Development indicated that the Plan of Action was still of importance in guiding international efforts in favour of the elderly. China also endorsed annexes I and II of Economic and Social Council resolution 1989/50. Owing to active promotion by the Chinese Government and the Chinese Commission on Aging, considerable headway had been made in China in furthering the cause of the elderly. A "Day for the Aging" had been designated in many provinces and municipalities, and many local governments had promulgated by-laws to protect the rights of the aging. The Chinese Government also attached great importance to creating the conditions in which old people could continue to participate in the development process.
42. China supported the recommendation made at the spring session of the Economic and Social Council to convene an expert meeting in 1989 in order further to promote ongoing work concerning disabled persons. It was convinced that, working together, the various countries and the international community as a whole would be able to overcome a multitude of difficulties. The Chinese Government had always attached great importance to the work of disabled persons. In 1988, the National Association of Disabled Persons of China had adopted a five-year work programme for disabled persons, based on the United Nations World Programme of Action concerning Disabled Persons. Since the beginning of the year, various provinces had formulated their own programmes in accordance with the national work programme. China was confident that greater socio-economic development would provide more opportunities for disabled persons to participate in social life on an equal looting and would enable disabled persons to enjoy all the rights in a real sense.
43. Crime had become a serious social problem in many countries and posed a great threat to their socio-economic development. In recent years, the relevant United Nations organs had achieved good results in helping countries to improve their legal systems and their strategies for prevention and control of crimes, as well as in strengthening co-operation among countries in that regard. China placed crime prevention in the context of its overall strategy for national development, and it advocated fruitful international co-operation in that important field. The Chinese Government attached great importance to the preparations for the Eighth United Nations Congress on the Prevention of Crime and the Treatment of Offenders, to be held in Havana in 1990. It had sent a delegation to the Asia and the Pacific Regional Preparatory Meeting held at Bangkok in April 1989, where it had participated in the discussion of five substantive items, and it wished to work with other countries to contribute to the success of the Eighth Congress.
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44. Ms. MERCHANT (Norway), speaking on behalf of the Nordic countries, said that the report rightly stressed the strong link between economic and social development in both the national and the international context. The Nordic countries had on several occasions underlined the importance of taking social policy factors into consideration when defining development aims in order to maintain the proper balance between economic incentives and fair social distribution, thus contributing to sustainable development. Paradoxically, however, high material standards of living could also coexist with increasing social problems. It was therefore vital that not only national authorities but also intergovernmental organizations should implement the relevant recommendations and decisions formulated in the United Nations system.
45. In regard to that system, for the various organs to be able to fulfil their mandated tasks, the division of responsibilities should be clear, and resources should be distributed according to the priorities set. If they wished to accord higher priority to social questions, it was imperative that the Centre for Social Development and Humanitarian Affairs should be adequately staffed.
46. In the opinion of the Nordic countries, "The Guiding Principles for Developmental Social Welfare Policies and Programmes in the Near Future" were a source of inspiration and provided the appropriate framework for future-***ented action in the field of social welfare and development. However, paragraphs 95 and 96, especially, should be implemented. The great improvement in the work of the Commission for Social Development in recent years also gave hope for the future.
47. Unfortunately, the World Programme of Action concerning Disabled Persons and
the main goals for the United Nations Decade of Disabled Persons were still far
from being implemented. It was encouraging to note, however, that some progress
had been made in improving the accessibility of United Nations premises to disabled
persons, as well as the employment possibilities of disabled persons in the United
Nations organizations. Nevertheless, new guidelines and strategies for further
work in favour of disabled persons were needed. To that end, it would be necessary
to evaluate the results of the United Nations Decade of Disabled Persons, and they
urged Member States, acting in consultation with the organizations of disabled
persons, to submit advance comments to the Secretary General by 2 8 February 1990,
as requested, for inclusion in the background document to be discussed both at the
meeting of experts in Helsinki in May 1990 and at the forty-fifth session of the
General Assembly. The Nordic countries also reiterated their support for an
international campaign to increase the general knowledge of the Decade and the
Programme of Action.
48. It was encouraging to see that a European regional platform for the discussion of social policies was re-emerging. In the light of the economic constraints on the United Nations Centre for Social Development and Humanitarian Affairs as well as on regional intergovernmental co-operation, the Nordic countries wished to suggest that the Economic Commission for Europe again look into the possibilities of developing its activities in the social field. They were prepared to work with the Commission in furthering regional activities on social welfare and policy development.
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(Ms. Merchant, Norway)
49. The Nordic countries had earlier requested that the importance of problems related to the use of alcohol should be duly reflected in the programme and budget proposals put forward by the Secretary-General. Meanwhile, she was pleased to report that planning was going ahead on the United Nations expert meeting on the negative social consequences of alcohol use, to be hosted by the Norwegian Government in 1990. Norway was also looking forward to participating in the implementation of the Council resolution.
50. Reporting on the national experience in promoting the co-operative movement had become rather stale. The time had come to define possible new roles and organizational models for joint efforts. A new approach might be found for future discussions of the co-operative movement by linking it with the discussion and implementation of the Guiding Principles instead of limiting it to traditional reporting on consumer and production co-operatives.
51. The continuing deterioration of the environment posed a threat to social development and, eventually, to the very basis of life on earth. The Nordic countries therefore appreciated the strong moves within the United Nations system and nationally to integrate environmental considerations in all relevant areas and to intensify international co-operation on the environment.
52. Miss BACHTOBJI (Tunisia) said that on the eve of the twentieth anniversary of the Declaration on Social Progress and Development, it was important to note that, as the Declaration emphasized, social progress depended on the realization of certain priority objectives, such as the elimination of poverty, hunger and illiteracy, the assurance of full employment, the provision of social welfare services and the protection of the environment. In that respect, the world economic crisis continued to have disastrous repercussions on the social situation of developing countries. The stagnation of government aid, the heavy debt and debt-servicing burden and the structural adjustment policies all had a negative impact on social programmes. For that reason, the new International Development Strategy for the Fourth United Nations Development Decade should give priority to developing human resources, promoting education and health, and ensuring food and job security. Tunisia believed that the guidelines established within the framework of the Interregional Consultation on Developmental Social Welfare Policies and Programmes should be an integral part of that Strategy, and it applauded the initiative of the Secretary-General to increase technical assistance to developing countries in carrying out their social programmes. The North-South dialogue needed to be reactivated with a view to lessening inequalities between the developed and the developing countries. In the long run, international peace and security depended on increased co-operation and dialogue concerning social and economic problems.
53. Tunisian policies with respect to youth were aimed at integrating young people into the work-force. However, while the problems of youth were the primary responsibility of their Governments, the interdependence of the world economy made financial and technical co-operation among countries necessary. In that spirit,
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(Miss Bachtobji, Tunisia)
Tunisia wished to reaffirm the importance of the United Nations Programme of Action for African Economic Recovery and Development 1986-1990.
54. In connection with the situation of disabled persons, Tunisia wished to emphasize the need for the exchauge of experiential data among countries within the framework of the implementation of the World Programme of Action concerning Disabled Persons, as well as to encourage contributions by States to the Voluntary Fund Tor the United Nations Decade of Disabled Persons, so that it could meet the financial requests of the developing countries in that area. Tunisia's global approach to the social promotion of disabled persons had included such recent measures as the institution of a higher council for the disabled, which was charged with advising on the prevention and detection of handicaps and with proposing programmes and measures for ensuring the health protection and social integration of disabled persons. Its 1989 budget contained provisions for the construction of a new centre for the blind and for the organization of three pilot professional training centres for disabled persons. Also, a law had recently been promulgated requiring public and private businesses to hire disabled persons. Lastly, in February 1988, Tunisia had ratified the Convention concerning Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment (Disabled Persons), adopted by the International Labour Conference.
55. Mr. CHRYSANTHOPOULOS (Greece) said that, with respect to the co-operative movement, many co-operatives had been established in Greece, mainly in the agricultural sector. With regard to the national experience in achieving far-reaching social and economic changes for the purpose of social progress, he noted that while the report of the Secretary-General on that subject provided useful information, the number of countries answering the questionnaire remained low. Greece believed that allowing longer intervals between questionnaires would enable more countries to participate, which would in turn permit a more comprehensive analysis. Greece was fully conscious of the problems caused by changes in the world social situation, such as urbanization, industrialization and migration, and was accelerating socio-economic development through education, training and social welfare programmes. It had also developed programmes for assisting rural populations and all other vulnerable groups, which were aimed at incorporating those groups into the mainstream of economic and social life.
56. His delegation attached great importance to the question of aging, since the aging population of Greece was growing steadily. The Greek Government was working to develop methods to provide proper social welfare for the elderly, to integrate them into social life and provide support for them and their families, and to encourage their self-reliance.
57. Greece agreed with the proposal that 1994 be proclaimed "International Family Yera. Because the success of an international family year greatly depended on comprehensive preparations, he called on national committees, regional commissions, specialized agencies and non-governmental organizations to provide the pertinent information to help the Secretary-General in preparing for the Year. Greece also agreed with the proposal of the Secretary-General that the Commission for Social
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(Mr. Chrysanthopoulos, Greece)
Development should serve as the preparatory body for the international year and that the Commission on the Status of Women should contribute in the preparatory work.
58. In Greece, family law had been updated to contain provisions regulating questions concerning, inter alia, marriage, divorce, the upbringing of children, parental care, property relations between spouses and provisions for shading family responsibilities. However, an international family year should address the needs of all families in all parts of the world, taking into the account the different social, economic, cultural and political systems. Greece believed that the recommendations contained in the report of the Secretary-General could form the basis for an international plan of action. In that connection, it also wished to suggest that the problems of the rural family should be included among those issues and to emphasize the importance of the participation of non-governmental organizations in the International year.
59. He wished to make some brief comments on a letter dated 8 August 1989 from the Charge d'affaires a.i. of Albania (A/44/448). That letter, in its annex, transmitted an official announcement on the general census of the population of Albania carried out in April 1989. It stated that out of the population of non-Albanian nationality of that country, 58,758 inhabitants were of Greek nationality. His Government could not accept that figure in so far as it purported to refer to inhabitants of Albania of Greek ethnic origin of the Eastern Orthodox denomination. There were a number of genuine sources of information on the matter, spanning the last 60 years, to which he could refer. An Albanian report by a high official of the Ministry of Interior of that country, entitled Albania 1927, registered 178,349. or approximately one fifth of the total population of Albania as belonging to the Eastern Orthodox faith. At another census carried out in 1941 by Italian authorities, the Orthodox population was found to be approximately 216,000. More recently, according to a publication of the Federal Statistical Bureau of the Federal Republic of Germany, under the title Albanian 1987, 200,000 persons of the Greek Orthodox faith were living in Albania. Other reliable sources brought the figure to an even higher level. Greece and Albania had attained a most appreciable record of progress in their overall bilateral relations, which,
inter alia., had a bearing on the social and economic welfare of the Greek minority living in Albania. The remarks he had just formulated should be taken as a sincere and positive contribution toward placing in its true context the perspective of a continuing social progress of that minority.
60. Mrs. SKOWRON-OLSZOWSKA (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural
Organization), addressing agenda item 93, said that the improved international
situation provided a unique opportunity to channel fresh resources to narrow and
gradually close the unacceptable gap between rich and poor countries. The widening
gap between the developing and industrialized countries, the deterioration in the
terms of trade, unemployment, the debt burden and other problems required a
commitment on the part of everyone, especially young people, to promote peace among
nations, shared development between rich and poor States through the elimination of
inequalities, progress in the field of human rights, and greater environmental
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61. The youth population of the world, which was expected to increase to 1 billion by 1991, was an essential human resource, eager to contribute to the development of society. However, young people were affected more than any other group by high rates of unemployment, inequalities within and among nations and even war, That situation and inadequate learning systems made youth economically vulnerable and socially insecure, leading some young people into self-destructive behaviour patterns such as delinquency, drug abuse and suicide,
62. Although policy makers fully acknowledged the role of young people as the key to future progress and human resources development, there was a need to rethink youth policies and develop innovative programmes by mobilizing the creative potential of young people through co-ordinated action at the international, national and local levels. UNESCO accorded high priority to youth issues in its third medium-term plan (1990-1995). Its actions in that area were designed to enhance the status of young people in society and mobilize them in the national development process. As a new theme in the UNESCO programme, youth issues received particular attention in all major programme areas.
63. In the field of education, young people were the principal target for literacy teaching and employment training. The prevention of drug abuse and AIDS, and the promotion of sports were the subjects of specific youth-oriented actions. In the field of science, steps had been taken to promote scientific and technological knowledge and environmental awareness. Young people were encouraged to play a greater role in the cultural life of society and the development of a critical appreciation of the media.
64. Research into the marginalization of young people was a major activity in the social and human sciences programme of UNESCO and aimed at identifying the factors favouring fuller participation by young people in the life of society. Interested Member States could obtain UNESCO assistance in the formulation of national youth policies to facilitate the participation of young people in the development process. UNESCO also promoted voluntary service by young people and maintained close ties with youth organizations to assist young people in implementing projects that they initiated. Special steps were being taken to strengthen inter-cultural youth exchange programmes to foster peace and international understanding through direct knowledge of other cultures.
65. A special mobilizing project on youth sought to establish an international information service to improve the understanding of youth issues and enhance the capacity of networks of youth institutions and research centres to exchange information on relevant questions and develop innovative responses. Those initiatives should help design innovative policies and programmes for solving the problems of youth. The mobilizing project represented one of the strongest commitments by UNESCO to greater participation by youth in the building of a better world. Lastly, she drew attention to the report by the Director-General on the contribution by UNESCO to the promotion of international co-operation with regard to young people (25 C/18), which provided a more detailed account of the activities undertaken for the benefit of young people during the 1988-1989 biennium.
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AGENDA ITEM 89! IMPLEMENTATION OF THE PROGRAMME OF ACTION FOR THE SECOND DECADE TO COMBAT RACISM AND RACIAL DISCRIMINATION (continued) (A/C.3/44/L.6)
66. Mrs. ARUNGU-CLENDE (Kenya), introducing the draft resolution on behalf of the Group of African States, said that, having considered the various reports of the Secretary-General submitted within the framework of the implementation of the Programme of Action for the Second Decade, the Group was convinced that there was still a need to take more effective and sustained measures for the elimination of all forms of racism and racial discrimination. The draft resolution, inter alio, appealed to all Governments and to international and non-governmental organizations to increase and intensify their activities to combat racism, racial discrimination and apartheid; and affirmed once again the need for the implementation of the plan of activities proposed for the period 1990-1993 contained in the annex to General Assembly resolution 42/47. It was hoped that the draft resolution would be adopted by consensus.
67. The CHAIRMAN said that, action on the draft resolution would be taken at a later stage of the Committee's work.
AGENDA ITEM 100: ELIMINATION OF ALL FORMS OF RACIAL DISCRIMINATION (continued) (A/C.3/44/L.7 and L.11)
Draft resolution A/C.2/44/L.7
68. Mrs. NIKOLIC (Yugoslavia), introducing on behalf of the sponsors draft resolution A/C.3/44/L.7 on the report of the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, said that the main aim of the draft resolution was to help overcome the financial problems facing CERD caused by the continuing lack of funds to cover the expenses of the members of that Committee. The draft resolution expressed profound concern at the fact that a number of States parties to the Convention had still not fulfilled their financial obligations, which had led to the cancellation of the February/March 1909 session. The debate in the Third Committee had shown the continuing concern of many delegations at the financial situation of CERD. Accordingly, paragraph 7 of the draft resolution strongly appealed to all States parties, especially those in arrears, to fulfil their financial obligations so as to enable the Committee to meet regularly. Paragraph 8 invited the Secretary-General to do everything possible to ensure that funds were available to moot all the costs of the Committee's meetings in 1990.
69. If CERD was unable to carry out its important work because of a lack of financial resources, a lasting solution must be found in co-operation with the Secretariat. Accordingly, paragraph 10 invited the Secretary-General to report to the States parties on all legal and administrative measures that could be taken to guarantee the regular functioning of the Committee. That would represent a good basis for constructive dialogue among States parties at their next meeting. Lastly, it was hoped that the draft resolution would be adopted by consensus.
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DRAFT RESOLUTION A/C.3/44/L.11
70. Ms. HUNDAHUNDA (Zambia), introducing draft resolution A/C.3/44/L.11 on the status of the International Convention on the Suppression and Punishment of the Crime of APARTHEID said that the following countries had joined the sponsors of the draft resolution: Afghanistan, Bulgaria, Burkina Feso, Cameroon, Ethiopia, Ghana, the German Democratic Republic, India, the Islamic Republic of Iran, the Lao People's Democratic Republic, the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, Mali, Mongolia, Nicaragua, the Sudan, Uganda, the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic and Viet Nam. Universal accession to the Convention and its implementation would make an important contribution to the struggle against apartheid. The draft resolution sought to ensure that those States that had not yet done so ratified or acceded to the Convention without further delay, in particular those States that had jurisdiction over transnational corporations operating in South Africa and Namibia and without whose co-operation such operations could not be halted. It was hoped that the draft resolution would be widely supported by the Committee.
71. The CHAIRMAN said that the Committee would take action on the draft resolutions at a later stage in its work.
AGENDA ITEM 105: IMPORTANCE OF THE UNIVERSAL REALIZATION OF THE RIGHT OF PEOPLES TO SELF-DETERMINATION AND OF THE SPEEDY GRANTING OF INDEPENDENCE TO COLONIAL COUNTRIES AND PEOPLES FOR THE EFFECTIVE GUARANTEE AND OBSERVANCE OF HUMAN RIGHTS (continued) (A/C.3/44/L.8, L.9 and L.10)
DRAFT RESOLUTION A/C.3/44/L.8
72. Mrs. ARUNGU-OLENDE (Kenya), introducing the draft resolution on the item on
behalf of the Group of African States, said that it took into consideration the
ongoing process in Namibia in accordance with Security Council resolution
435 (1978). The Group took into consideration the fluid situation in Namibia, bearing in mind the fact that the draft resolution might have to be changed before final adoption in plenary. Paragraph 16 had been reworded to read "Commends the mass democratic movement in South Africa for the tremendous advances scored during the recent campaign of defiance of unjust apartheid laws in the ongoing struggle against apartheid,". The draft resolution urged all States and others to do their utmost to ensure the full implementation of the Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples.
Draft resolution A/C.3/44/L.9
73. Ms. ZEB (Pakistan), introducing on behalf of the sponsors draft resolution
A/C.3/44/L.9 on the universal realization of the right of peoples to
self-determination, said that Iraq had joined the sponsors. The draft resolution,
which was virtually identical to General Assembly resolution 43/105, took into
account cases in which peoples had been denied their right to self-determination by
foreign military intervention, aggression and occupation and called upon those
States responsible to cease immediately all such activities. It was sincerely
hoped that, as in the past, the draft resolution would be adopted by the Committee
and in plenary without a vote.
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74. Miss. DIOP (Senegal) said that her delegation wished to become a sponsor of draft resolution A/C.3/44/L.9.
75. Ms. GARUBA (Nigeria), introducing on behalf of the sponsors of draft resolution A/C.3/44/L.10 on the use of mercenaries as a means to violate human rights and to impede the exercise of the right of people to self-determination, said that Afghanistan, Benin, the Congo, Mali, Mexico, the Sudan and Viet Nam had joined the sponsors. Mercenary activities were no longer peculiar to any particular region of the world. Mercenarism had become an international phenomenon and had assumed even more frightening aspects. The draft resolution expressed alarm at the emergence of new international criminal activities of mercenaries, in collusion with drug traffickers. The sponsors wore shocked at the high level of involvement in drug trafficking and the attempts to destabilize democratically elected Governments.
76. Aside from the reference to drug traffickers, the draft resolution was very similar to the one adopted at the previous session of the General Assembly. The Third Committee had the responsibility for questions relating to human rights and solf-determination. When the Sixth Committee had adopted a legal instrument on mercenary activities, the Third Committee would continue its work aimed at protecting the rights of the victims of such activities. It was hoped that all delegations would support the draft resolution in order to put an end to that nefarious phenomenon.
77. The CHAIRMAN said that action on the draft resolutions would be taken at a later stage of the Committee's work.
The...meeting. rose at 6,20 p.m.