Magazine article UN Chronicle

Economic and Social Council Holds 1987 Organizational Session

Magazine article UN Chronicle

Economic and Social Council Holds 1987 Organizational Session

Article excerpt

Economic and Social Council holds 1987 organizational session

The 54-member Economic and SocialCouncil, acting by consensus at its 1987 organizational session (New York, 3-6 February), established a Special Commission to carry out an indepth study of the United Nations intergovernmental structure and functions in the economic and social fields, and its secretariat support structures, as requested by the General Assembly in December 1986 (resolution 41/213). The meetings are open to the full participation of all States Members of the United Nations and Governments were invited to participate "at the highest possible level' in the body's work.

Abdel Halim Badawi of Egypt wasappointed as Chairman of the new body, which held its first session from 2 to 6 and 18 to 20 March (see p. 57). The Special Commission is to submit progress reports to the Council at its regular sessions and to complete its final report for consideration at the Council's second regular session in 1988.

Jean L. Ripert, Director-Generalfor Development and International Economic Co-operation, told the Council on 3 February that the review of the intergovernmental machinery in the economic and social sectors would be a major undertaking as there were more than 110 intergovernmental and expert bodies dealing with economic and social issues.

The purpose of the review was toachieve cost-effectiveness and ensure greater responsiveness to the needs of Member States. Much more could be done in those areas, Mr. Ripert said, stressing that careful consideration must also be given to ensuring that the United Nations capacity to deal in an appropriate manner with economic, social and humanitarian issues of critical importance to Member States was maintained and, if possible, enhanced.

To mark the twentieth anniversaryof the adoption of the International Human Rights Covenants, the Council decided, also by consensus, to give appropriate consideration to those instruments during its deliberations in 1987, with a view to strengthening their implementation. It endorsed the General Assembly's appeal to all States to become parties of the Covenants, and to consider acceding to the Optional Protocol of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and making the declaration provided for in article 41 of that Covenant. …

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