Activities of the Secretariat
Report of the ICAPP Mission to the U.N. General Assembly
(October 13-17, 2013)
The ICAPP Mission, composed of Hon. Chung Eui-yong, Co-Chairman of the Standing Committee and Secretary General, and Hon. Sous Yara, Member of Parliament of Cambodia, visited the United Nations during October 13-17, 2013 to attend the meeting of the Sixth Committee of the 68th session of the U.N. General Assembly (UNGA) held on October 16 to deliberate on the issue of granting observer status to the ICAPP in the work of UNGA. The list and the program of the mission are attached as Appendixes I and II.
1. Meetings with Representatives of U.N. Member States
Prior to the meeting of the Sixth Committee, the ICAPP Mission had separate bilateral meetings with representatives of 17 Member States, including Argentina, Azerbaijan, Cambodia, China, Cuba, Iran, Japan, Republic of Korea, Nicaragua, Pakistan, Philippines, Russia, Sri Lanka, United Kingdom, United States, Venezuela and Vietnam and requested their support for the ICAPP’s bid for observer status in the UNGA. The list of representatives the mission had meetings with is attached as Appendix III.
At the meetings, the mission explained why the ICAPP should be granted observer status in the UNGA as outlined in the paper attached as Appendix IV. The representatives highly appreciated the contributions of the ICAPP to the U.N. objectives and the need for closer coordination and cooperation between the U.N. and the ICAPP in the future.
In particular, the representatives of Azerbaijan, Cambodia, China, Iran, Japan, Republic of Korea, Pakistan, Philippines, Sri Lanka and Vietnam expressed their strong support for the ICAPP’s observer status in the UNGA. This year’s draft resolution to invite the ICAPP as observer to the work of the UNGA was co-chaired and submitted by Cambodia, Japan, Republic of Korea and the Philippines. Sri Lanka and Vietnam joined later as co-sponsors prior to the meeting of the Sixth Committee. This year Cambodia offered to table the draft resolution at the beginning of the deliberations at the Sixth Committee, as Republic of Korea and the Philippines did respectively in 2011 and 2012.
Among ICAPP countries, only the Russian Federation expressed its reservation on two grounds: (1) strong reservations expressed by some Latin American Member States and (2) legal status of the ICAPP. The Russian representative, however, agreed not to block the consensus if the Latin American countries all join the consensus.
The representatives of Argentina, Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela all mentioned that their positions on the issue have not changed from previous ones. They said they haven’t received any clear instructions from their capitals to support the ICAPP’s request for observer status. Although they still have reservations on the issue because of the status of the ICAPP, which is not an inter-governmental organization, they all expressed their appreciation of the work of the ICAPP and its contributions to the work of the U.N.
The representatives of the United Kingdom and the United States also appreciated what the ICAPP has been doing and said that their governments would not block the consensus.
2. Results of the meetings of the Sixth Committee of the UNGA (October 16, 2013)
The item on granting observer status to the ICAPP in the UNGA was introduced and considered at the meeting of the Sixth Committee in the afternoon of October 16. After the introduction of the draft resolution by the Ambassador of Cambodia, representatives of the Philippines, Japan, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Azerbaijan, Republic of Korea and China made the statements supporting the ICAPP's observer status in the UNGA.
They, in particular, pointed out that the inter-governmental “MOU on Cooperation to Support the Activities of the ICAPP” was signed by eight governments in July 2013 and more than dozen governments are now taking domestic procedures to sign the MOU. They further stressed that this fact well demonstrates that the governments in Asia recognize the ICAPP as an official international organization and fully support the work of the ICAPP. Therefore, special consideration should be given to the unique nature of the ICAPP which is also participated by both governing and opposition political parties.
The representatives of Argentina, Cuba, Venezuela and Russia expressed their appreciation of the ICAPP’s contributions to the work of the U.N., but repeated their reservations about granting observer status in the UNGA on the ground that the ICAPP does not meet the first of the following two requirements for UNGA’s observer, as laid out in the UNGA’s Decision 49/426 of December 9, 1994 and the UNGA”s Resolution 54/195 of December 17, 1999 in considering the applications for observer status in the UNGA:.
- Granting observer status will be confined to States and the Inter-governmental Organizations.
- And the work of the organizations should be in the interest of the U.N. General Assembly in nature.
In the absence of consensus, the Chairman concluded that consultations should continue and that the Committee should revert to the issue at a later stage.
I. List of the ICAPP Mission
II. Program of the ICAPP Mission
III. List of Representatives for Meetings
IV. Why ICAPP should be granted observer status