ICAPP Special Missions
Report on the Results of the ICAPP Mission to the U.N.
(October 18-20, 2015)
Hon. Chung Eui-yong, Co-Chairman of the Standing Committee and Secretary General of the ICAPP, visited the United Nations during October 18-20, 2015 to attend the Meeting of the Sixth Committee of the 70th Session of the U.N. General Assembly (UNGA). He was accompanied by Mr. Ramin A. Mammadov, Member of Political Council of Yeni (New) Azerbaijan Party and Vice Chairman of the ICAPP Media Forum, and Ms. Choi Jinah, Assistant to the Secretary General of the ICAPP.
Upon arrival in New York on October 18, Mr. Chung had prior consultations with the representatives of the Missions of the Kingdom of Cambodia and the Republic of Korea to the U.N. The “draft resolution to invite the ICAPP to the work of the UNGA in capacity of observer” was originally co-sponsored by seven Member States, i.e. Australia, Cambodia, Japan, Republic of Korea, Nepal, the Philippines and Sri Lanka. Later three more Member States joined as co-sponsors. They are Azerbaijan, Indonesia and the Netherlands. The draft resolution is attached as Appendix I.
On October 19, Mr. Chung hosted a breakfast meeting with the representatives of co-sponsoring Member States of the draft resolution for prior consultation. The following representatives attended the meeting.
- H.E. Mr. Tuy Ry, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the Kingdom of Cambodia
- Mr. Sophea Yaungchan, Counselor of the Permanent Mission of the Kingdom of Cambodia
- H.E. Hahn Choong-hee, Ambassador and Deputy Permanent Representative of the Republic of Korea
- Mr. Rhee Zha-hyoung, Counselor of the Permanent Mission of the Republic of Korea
- H.E. Ms. Irene Susan B. Natividad, Ambassador and Deputy Permanent Representative of the Philippines
- Ms. Sonali Samarasinghe, Minister Counselor of the Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka
- Mr. Paul Menkveld, Deputy Permanent Representative of the Netherlands
- Ms. Husniyya Mammadova, Counselor of the Permanent Mission of Azerbaijan
- Mr. Haruka Sawada, Adviser of the Permanent Mission of Japan
At the meeting, representatives of the co-sponsors exchanged the information on the positions of some Member States which might express reservations at the Sixth Committee meeting to be scheduled for the afternoon. They confirmed that two Member States from Latin America, i.e. Argentina and Venezuela, are expected to voice their reservations at today’s meeting again, on the ground that the ICAPP doesn’t meet one of the criteria set by the UNGA’s Decision of 49-426 of December 9, 1994, that “granting observer status in the UNGA should be confined to States or Inter-governmental Organizations.”
There were no more Member States, they had so far found, that might block consensus at today’s meeting. Cuba and Ukraine, which were known to have reservations on granting observer status to the ICAPP, had confirmed that they would not block the consensus.
The representatives of the co-sponsors agreed that, thanks to the efforts of the co-sponsors and the ICAPP, the draft resolution has drawn the largest number of co-sponsoring Member States and the smallest number of Member States which maintained the opposing position since the ICAPP had applied for the observer status in 2011. However, since it seems unlikely to win the consensus again this year, the best strategy would be to have the Chairman of the Sixth Committee conclude today’s deliberations by deferring the decision at a later stage. In this regard, they agreed to continue their efforts to obtain observer status for the ICAPP in the future.
They also agreed that it is important for co-sponsors to demonstrate solidarity during the deliberations on the item today and exchanged the views on main points they should include in their presentations at today’s meeting. It was agreed that Cambodia will introduce the resolution and all the co-sponsors will voice their strong support for ICAPP’s observer status in the UNGA at the meeting.
The Meeting of the Sixth Committee was held in the afternoon of October 19 at the Trusteeship Council Chamber of the U.N. Headquarters under the Chairmanship of the Permanent Representative of Trinidad and Tobago.
As was agreed, the Permanent Representative of Cambodia introduced the draft resolution and the other six co-sponsors who attended the meeting in the morning took the floor and strongly supported the ICAPP’s observer status in the UNGA, emphasizing, in particular, the following points.
- ICAPP represents both governing and opposition parties, which are either responsible for forming current governments or capable of holding power from a long-term perspective, and thus could be characterized as a de facto inter-governmental organization, starkly different from other NGOs. Currently, it represents over 360 political parties with a wide range of political ideologies in 52 countries in Asia.
- ICAPP is increasingly gaining international recognition as a de facto inter-governmental organization, by such actions as signing of the inter-governmental MOU which has been so far joined by the governments of ten countries in the region with the ICAPP Secretariat performing as the depository of the MOU. Governments of several more countries are taking necessary domestic procedures to sign the MOU.
- Political parties are represented by Heads of States or Governments, Prime Ministers and other cabinet members, Members of Parliament, and other political leaders in the ICAPP conferences, including the Standing Committee which is composed of representatives of 35 principal political parties in 23 countries..
- ICAPP is firmly committed to upholding the U.N. Charter, as the first paragraph in the preamble of its Charter clearly stipulates, and has been actively engaging in various activities in furtherance of international peace and security, human rights and development, i.e. the three pillars of the work of the U.N.
- ICAPP has significantly contributed to making progress in UN activities, including the achievement of the MDGs, and will continue to help UN effectively implement the 2030 Agenda, which was launched by the U.N. in September 2015, by enhancing awareness and participation from the grassroots and translating the voices of multiple stakeholders into action.
- ICAPP has reached out to political parties in other continents and is planning to convene the first Tri-continental Conference of Political Parties in Asia, Africa and Latin America in April 2016 in Indonesia.
Statements made by the Permanent Representative of Cambodia and Deputy Permanent Representative of the Republic of Korea are attached as Appendices II and III.
However, representatives of two Member States from Latin America, i.e. Argentina and Venezuela, expressed their reservations on the ground of the UNGA Decision 49-426. In this regard, the representative of Argentina stated that, although her government has reservations on granting observer status to the ICAPP, it highly values the contributions that the ICAPP has been making to international peace and prosperity and to the work of the U.N., and has no doubt that the ICAPP would play an important role in implementing the 2030 Agenda.
In the absence of consensus, the Chairman of the Sixth Committee concluded the deliberations on the item of ICAPP’s application for observer status by inviting Member States to continue their consultation on the issue and to revert to it at a later stage.
After the conclusion of the Sixth Committee meeting, Ambassador Tuy Ry of Cambodia and Ambassador Hahn Choong-hee of the Republic of Korea confirmed the agreement among the co-sponsors that they would continue their efforts for the ICAPP’s observer status in the UNGA and to defer the item to a future session of the Sixth Committee.
I. Draft Resolution to invite ICAPP as an observer to the UNGA
II. Statement by Permanent Representative of Cambodia
III. Statement by Deputy Permanent Representative of the Republic of Korea