|06USUNNEWYORK1241||2006-06-20 20:43:00||UNCLASSIFIED||USUN New York|
VZCZCXYZ0009 PP RUEHWEB DE RUCNDT #1241/01 1712043 ZNR UUUUU ZZH P 202043Z JUN 06 FM USMISSION USUN NEW YORK TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 9383
UNCLAS USUN NEW YORK 001241
1. Summary: General Assembly mandate review discussions
continued in light of the Co-Chairs proposal to focus
remaining discussion, at least initially, on those mandates
that are older than five years and have not been renewed.
Co-Chair Rock opened the meeting by addressing the Co-Chairs
letter, dated June 9th, stating that the informal plenary
would consider mandates older than five years and non-renewed
as well as "identify other possible areas where there could
be agreement." There is a clear division among those states
that want to review all mandates and those that want to
vastly limit the scope and duration of the review. There was
intense resistance from NAM and G-77 (Algeria and Cuba) to
consideration of mandate review that went beyond a review of
Mandates older than five years and had not been renewed.
Japan and the U.S (see para.2) expressed disappointment with
the Co-Chairs decision to go forward with a phase one review
that focused on seven percent of mandates and questioned
whether this would yield tangible reforms and a value-neutral
review. Australia, speaking on behalf of CANZ, and Korea
stressed that all mandates should be included in this phase
of the review and called for a timeline or road-map to
continue the review beyond June. The EU, while noting that
mandate review should cover mandates older than five years
and renewed, suggested that "in the spirit of compromise" the
group begin work on the seven percent in the first phase,
then widen the scope of the review during the second phase.
The UK, while endorsing this position, generally did not
suggest limiting review to mandates older than five years
that have not been renewed. Co-chair Rock noted the
differences among delegations in respect to the issue of
mandate review, but pleaded with the group that "we can do
nothing or we can do something-the international community is
watching". The lively and sometimes divisive meeting was
closed by Co-Chair Akram who stated his belief that we need
to focus on substance and that Members should bring concrete
proposals to the table at the next meeting. Interestingly, he
did not refer to mandates older than five years and not
renewed as the sole focus of the next discussion.
2. Amb. Mark D. Wallace gave a forceful statement questioning
any proposal to limit the review, referencing specific
language in the Outcome Document that does not limit the
review to only those mandates older that five years and not
renewed. He engaged in an interactive dialogue with Co-Chairs
Rock and Akram.
-Co-Chair Rock noted that there are two interpretations of
the Outcome Document and that we have to start somewhere.
-Amb. Wallace responded that reviewing only seven percent of
the mandates makes it impossible to conduct a "value-neutral
review" and by following that course the GA will do a
disservice to the Outcome Document and to the international
community as a whole; to which Co-Chair Rock responded by
suggesting the U.S intervene during the course of work to
highlight exactly when values are being undermined.
-Co-Chair Akram noted that other states should consider the
U.S. remarks and if mandate review was going to be a
contentious and relatively fruitless exercise, the GA should
"not waste anyone's time." He added that this problem stems
from the Outcome Document, where States were "deliberately
ambiguous for the sake of consensus" and that the Co-Chair's
were trying their best to bridge fundamental differences to
at least capture some area of compromise.
-Co-Chair Rock urged the GA to continue, to go beyond process
and get into substance so that progress can be made.
3. G-77 and NAM Comments: South Africa (G-77 and China)
stressed they are prepared to review each mandate one-by-one,
on individual merit so long as the mandates are older than
five years and non-renewed. They also expressed there desire
to have an assessment by the Secretariat on the status of
implementation of each mandate, although this would require
-Cuba remarked that the group needs to decide on a clear
definition of procedure for the review and was adamant that
mandate review applies only to those mandates that are older
than five years and not renewed. They also stressed that the
deadline for review of mandates was not July 1st, but Dec. 31
2006, and not one day more. Cuba also claimed that any
discussion stemming from the addendum relating to
Consolidation of Reports that were attached to the last
report of the Co-Chair, is invalid; they will oppose
consolidation of any kind e.g. reporting, UN bodies etc.
-Algeria, speaking on behalf of NAM, agreed with Cuba that it
was essential to develop a methodology for review of mandates
and that the mandate review is limited in scope and must end
at the conclusion of 2006.
-The Philippines, while agreeing with the position of the
G-77, was less confrontational in tone and suggested that an
examination of the seven percent begin immediately. They also
suggested that the Co-Chairs consider dividing the seven
percent of mandates to be examined into separate groups.
4. Other Comments: Korea welcomed the proposal of the
co-chairs to move the process forward, but warned the group
that Member States will be short-changed if only seven
percent of mandates are considered for review. The Koreans
urged the GA to be more ambitious and stated that although we
need to start somewhere (with the seven percent), we not
limit our review at this phase to the seven percent and that
the GA develop a road-map for the second phase.
-Australia for the CANZ similarly asserted that the review
should consider all mandates. and that there should be a
road-map in place by the end of June with a list of mandates
for examination that extends well beyond the seven percent.
With respect to this share, CANZ called for the GA to adopt a
resolution by the end of the month that will reduce or
-Japan expressed surprise and disappointment with the
decision to focus discussion on only seven percent of the
mandates. It is their view that a review of only seven
percent, or 382 of the mandates, "does not look to us as
promising areas for any meaningful reform". Japan noted that
so-called "politically-sensitive mandates" are also included
in the seven percent. Referring to the earlier briefing by
Robert Orr they maintained that the informal Plenary should
avoid "looking foolish" by reviewing foundation mandates of
organs like UNICEF and UNDP.
-Austria (EU) and the UK noted that mandate review should
cover mandates older than five years and renewed, but
supported proposals to begin with the seven percent.
5. Conclusion and Next Steps: Co-Chair Akram requested that
delegations try to keep their differences in abeyance and
focus on the process. He asked for Members to bring concrete
proposals to the next meeting so that the group can begin
actual work on reviewing mandates. He did not specify
however, whether these concrete proposals should focus solely
on mandates older than five years and not renewed.