Special Committee on Decolonization

Event: Special Committee on the Situation with regard to the Implementation of the Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial countries and Peoples – Third Meeting

Date: 10 June 2013–Time: 10:00 to 13:00 —-Location: Conference Room 3 (CB)

Key Speakers: Ms Margaret Novicki (Chief, Communications Campaigns Service, Strategic Communications Division, Department of Public Information), Ms Laura Vaccari (Chief, Decolonisation Unit, Department of Political Affairs), H.E. Mr Robert Aisi (Permanent Representative of Papua New Guinea to the United Nations in New York)

Attended by: Wayne Doyle, Sunny T.C. Hor, Mary C.Y. Lam, Candace K.T. Tien, Janice Sue H.Y. Wong, Iman Yashruti

Written by: Sunny T.C Hor

This meeting built on the Caribbean Regional Seminar of the Special Committee on Decolonization held in Quito, Ecuador from 28 to 30 May 2013. Resolutions were passed by the Committee to receive the reports on the dissemination of information on decolonization, information on Non-Self-Governing Territories and to send missions to those Territories. In addition, dates were set to call hearings and hear the petitions with regard to Western Sahara, Gibraltar and the Falkand Islands (Malvinas).

Ms Margaret Novicki from the Department of Public Information presented the Report of the Secretary-General on Dissemination of information on decolonization during the period from April 2012 to March 2013. She explained the many channels that her Department utilizes to cover decolonization issues in the General Assembly through press releases, updating the Special Committee website, social media, UN Television and UN Radio, but it also increased the awareness on decolonization through Model United Nations conferences, UN tours and the Dag Hammarskjöld Library. More Importantly, more local languages are progressively used to engage with schools and civil society.

Ms Laura Vaccari from the Department of Political Affairs also reported the five areas of work that her department is involved in with regard to decolonisation. They are preparing the working paper on the constitutional and socioeconomic situations of the 16 Non-Self-Governing Territories, organising the annual regional seminar, maintaining individual contacts with experts and civil society, responding to queries and requests for visits and managing the website on decolonisation.

Mr Robert Aisi from Papua New Guinea commended the Report of the Secretary-General in recognising the principle of self-determination for the peoples of the Non-Self-Governing Territories. While Mr Aisi appreciated the cooperation of France on New Caledonia, he alsocalled on the administering powers of the Territories to support the effort by providing segregated data on the social and economic condition and other means.

The meeting was concluded with remarks from the Chair, who noted that the Special Committee should be conscious of the purposes and intended result of the means that it takes.

Edited By Wayne Dean Doyle

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