First Committee ends 67th Session following delay caused by Hurricane Sandy

November 9th, 2012

The sixty-seventh session of the First Committee (Disarmament and International Security) closed its month-long session on 7 November. Despite the loss of three days of meetings due to hurricane Sandy, the Committee finished its work on time.

Assembly's First Committee Begins General Debate
Assembly’s First Committee Begins General Debate
Assembly's First Committee Begins General Debate
H. E. Mr. Desra Percaya, Permanent Representative of Indonesia to the UN and Chairperson of the General Assembly’s First Committee
Flood-damaged basement at UN Headquarters
Flood waters in basement of UN Headquarters

In his closing remarks, the Committee Chair Ambassador Percaya (Indonesia) said deliberations had been marked by both positive and negative developments. On the positive side, there was a carry-over of the high energy and enthusiasm, which delegations had developed during the arms trade treaty conference and the Second Review Conference on the Programme of Action on the illicit trade in small arms and light weapons, both of which had been held shortly before the opening of the First Committee.

During the course of the substantive session, which began on 8 October, the Committee approved 53 resolutions and six decisions which will be submitted to the General Assembly for its consideration. This year saw 29 texts requiring a recorded vote, while another 30 were approved without a vote. This represents a marked increase in the number of texts requiring recorded votes as compared to the last session due to a divergence of views over the provisions of some of the resolutions.

During the 67th Session, four resolutions called for additions to the future programme of work of the Office for Disarmament Affairs.

One resolution would establish an Open-Ended Working Group to develop proposals to take forward multilateral nuclear disarmament negotiations. This Open-Ended Working Group is to be convened in Geneva for up to 15 working days in 2013.

The First Committee also called for the convening of the Final United Nations Conference on the Arms Trade Treaty in order to complete its elaboration. The conference is to be held in New York from 18 to 28 March 2013.

Also in 2013, the Committee approved a High-Level General Assembly Meeting on Nuclear Disarmament as a one day plenary meeting to be held on 26 September during the high-level segment of the 68th Session of the General Assembly.

The First Committee also called for the establishment of a Group of Governmental experts to make recommendations on possible elements which could contribute to a treaty banning the production of fissile material for nuclear weapons. The 25 member Expert group would meet in Geneva for two weeks each in 2014 and 2015.
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