UN General Assembly voting on a resolution calling for an end to the U.S. economic, commercial and financial embargo on Cuba - UN Photo - Cia Pak
CAIRO – 11 September 2017: Heads of States together with the United Nations (UN) Secretary General, government ministries, leaders of U.N. agencies and civil society and other dignitaries will convene at the U.N. headquarters in New York on September 12, for the 72nd Session of the U.N. General Assembly (GA). The UNGA session will focus on the theme “Focusing on People: Striving for Peace and a Decent Life for all on a Sustainable Planet”.
The annual event includes a series of meetings, where member states of the U.N. and organizations highlight, discuss and debate a range of political, humanitarian, economic and security issues.
The agenda for each UNGA session is planned seven months prior to launching the session. Within 60 days before the session, the tentative agenda is refined into a provisional agenda. Once the session begins, the final agenda is adopted in a plenary meeting where tasks are assigned to the various main committees of the GA.
In preparation for the UNGA 72nd session, the UN released documents related to its agenda items of Education, Environmental Conventions, Social Development, Trade, Gender and Human Development.
The President of the 72nd session, Miroslav Lajčák, identified six overarching priorities for his term. These priorities include: making a difference in the lives of ordinary people; prevention and mediation for sustaining peace; migration; political momentum for the SDGs and climate; human rights and equality, including equal opportunities for genders; and quality of events organized by the presidency. In parallel to the opening session, a number of events will take place including the Global Goals Week 2017 and the Climate Week NYC 2017.
This article presents the key issues that the UNGA will be focusing on during the 2017 session, according to the UNGA provisional agenda published on July 13, 2017.
On September 12, the GA will convene for the opening session. The first and second weeks of the session (September 12-22) will witness general debates including presenting the states representatives’ credentials to the Assembly; election of the GA president and vice president for the 73 session; adoption of the agenda and allocation of items and reports of the General Committee. The third week will witness discussions to review the U.N. Global Plan of Action to Combat Trafficking in Persons.
Promotion of sustained economic growth and sustainable development: During this session member states discuss:
The Economic and Social Council report.
The Implementation of the Declaration of Commitment on HIV/AIDS.
Improving global road safety
Sports, macroeconomic policy, information and communications technologies for development
Follow up on the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Discussing the Role of the U.N. in promoting development in the context of globalization.
Eradication of poverty as well as discussing agriculture development, food security and nutrition.
Advancement of women.
Maintenance of international peace and security: The most important discussions in this session include:
Reports of the Security Council, the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees and the Peace building Commission.
Report of the Special Committee to Investigate Israeli Practices Affecting the Human Rights of the Palestinian People.
Implications of protracted conflicts on international peace, security and development.
The situation in the Middle East, Palestine, Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Central America, Cyprus, the Falkland Islands, Haiti and the Comorian island of Mayotte.
Ending the economic, commercial and financial embargo by U.S.A. against Cuba
Armed Israeli aggression against the Iraqi nuclear installations
Assistance in mine action and effects of atomic radiation
Review of the peacekeeping operations and special political missions.
The status of Non-Self-Governing Territories.
Permanent sovereignty of the Palestinian people in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and of the Arab population in the occupied Syrian Golan over their natural resources.
Development of Africa: this session includes discussions on the progress in supporting Africa, the causes of conflict and efforts to promote durable peace and sustainable development in Africa.
Promotion of Human Rights: includes discussions on the Report of the Human Rights Council; protection of the rights of children; the rights of indigenous people; elimination of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance; and the promotion and protection of human rights.
Effective coordination of humanitarian assistance efforts: discusses strengthening the U.N. coordination of humanitarian and disaster relief assistance and the U.N. assistance to Palestinian People.
Promotion of justice and international law: In this session, the GA members will discuss reports of the International Court of Justice and the International Criminal Court.
They will also discuss:
The oceans and seas law and sustainable fisheries.
Criminal accountability of the U.N. officials and experts on mission.
Progress in the U.N. Program of Assistance in the Teaching, Study, Dissemination and Wider Appreciation of International Law.
Strengthening the Role of the U.N.
Effects of armed conflicts on treaties and the responsibility of international organizations.
Disarmament: Discussions in this session include the report of the International Atomic Energy Agency; reduction of military budgets; prohibiting new types of weapons of mass destruction; establishment of a nuclear-weapon-free zone in the Middle East and prevention of arms race in outer space.
Drug control, crime prevention and combating terrorism: will discuss crime prevention and criminal justice, and international drug control Measures to eliminate international terrorism.
Organizational, administrative and other matters: During this session the UN Secretary General presents to the Assembly members reports on the work of the organization and the peace building fund. It also witnesses elections to fill vacancies in principal and subsidiary organs; admission of new members; strengthening the U.N. system; sexual exploitation and abuse; follow up on the U.N. Global Counter Terrorism Strategy and financial issues related to the U.N. organs and bodies.
You can watch live stream of the UNGA 72nd session on the UN Web TV.