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Press Release
UNITED NATIONS
Department of Public Information · News Coverage Service · New York


GA/DIS/3211
29 October 2001

Fifty-sixth General Assembly
First Committee
16th Meeting (PM)

MEDITERRANEAN SECURITY, ARMS TRANSPARENCY,
REGIONAL DISARMAMENT CENTRES ADDRESSED BY
FIVE DRAFT TEXTS INTRODUCED IN FIRST COMMITTEE


The General Assembly would encourage the countries of the Mediterranean region to strengthen their cooperation in combating all forms of terrorism, which seriously threatened regional peace and the improvement of the current political and economic situation, according to one of five draft texts introduced this afternoon in the First Committee (Disarmament and International Security).

Introducing that draft resolution, which would reaffirm that security in the Mediterranean was closely linked to European security, as well as to international peace and security, the representative of Algeria said that the routine introduction of the text demonstrated the commitment of the countries of the Mediterranean basin and Europe to turn the region into a haven of peace, security and cooperation.

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Background

The First Committee (Disarmament and International Security) met this afternoon to continue its second phase of work, namely thematic discussions on all disarmament and security items and the introduction and consideration of related draft resolutions and decisions. 

Introductions of draft texts on the following topics were expected: Mediterranean security; the Regional Centre for Peace and Disarmament in Africa; transparency in armaments; objective information on military expenditures; and the Regional Centre for Peace and Disarmament in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Under a text sponsored by Algeria on strengthening security and cooperation in the Mediterranean region (document A/C.1/56/L.37), the Assembly would reaffirm that security in the Mediterranean was closely linked to European security, as well as to international peace and security.  It would call on all States of the region to adhere to all the multilaterally negotiated legal instruments related to disarmament and non-proliferation, thus creating the necessary conditions for strengthening peace and cooperation in the region

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      Statements

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SAAD MAANDI (Algeria) introduced the draft resolution on strengthening security in the Mediterranean region (document A/C.1/56/L.37).  The routine introduction of the text had demonstrated the commitment of those countries of the Mediterranean basin and Europe in turning the region into a haven of peace, security and cooperation.  Convinced of their shared destiny and the immense reservoir of complementarity, those countries had committed themselves to a process of dialogue, reinforced by further joint initiatives, including some aimed at building a "Euro-Mediterranean" area, marked by stability and prosperity.  At the request of the draft's co-sponsors, the text did not differ from the resolution on the subject adopted last year.

In a discussion that followed, several representatives requested postponement of action on a number of drafts scheduled for tomorrow afternoon. 

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The representative of Egypt said that the draft text on nuclear proliferation in the Middle East (document A/C.1/56/L.25) would not be ready for action tomorrow. 

The representative of New Zealand said that because consultations were still ongoing, the draft decision on the CTBT (document A/C.1/56/L.10) would also not be available to be acted upon tomorrow.

The First Committee’s secretariat read out a list of texts on which action could be taken tomorrow.  Under Cluster One, nuclear weapons, texts on the following subjects would be ready for action:  a nuclear-weapon-free zone in the Middle East (document A/C.1/56/L.5); nuclear weapons convention (document A/C.1/56/L.12); the role of science and technology (document A/C.1/56/L.13); reducing nuclear danger (document A/C.1/56/L.14); Treaty of Tlatelolco (document A/C.1/56/L.17); negative security assurances (document A/C.1/56/L.26); the Conference on Disarmament decision (document A/C.1/56/L.31); International Court of Justice decision on the legality of nuclear weapons (document A/C.1/56/L.45); and a nuclear-weapon-free zone in Central Asia (document A/C.1/56/L.48).
 
Under Cluster Two, other weapons of mass destruction, texts on the following topics would be available for action:  prevention of an arms race in outer space (document A/C.1/56/L.7); dumping of nuclear wastes (document A/C.1/56/L.33); and the Chemical Weapons Convention (document A/C.1/56/L.32).

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