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Sixty-ninth session,
43rd Meeting (AM)

Tabling 14 Draft Texts on Human Rights, Third Committee Delegates Propose Sweeping Measures, from Monitoring Mercenaries to Combating Intolerance

The Third Committee (Social, Humanitarian and Cultural) met this morning to introduce a package of draft resolutions on a broad range of measures aimed at tackling pressing issues, including monitoring mercenaries, combating intolerance and human rights reporting on Syria.

On the agenda item on human rights situations and reports of special rapporteurs and representatives, Qatar’s delegate introduced a draft text on the situation of human rights in the Syrian Arab Republic (document A/C.3/69/L.31).

Continuing introductions on the agenda item on elimination of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance, delegates from the Russian Federation and Belgium, respectively, then presented draft texts.  They were on combating glorification of Nazism and other practices that contributed to fuelling contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance (document A/C.3/69/L.56) and on the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (document A/C.3/69/L.57).

Turning to the agenda item on the right of peoples to self-determination, the delegations of Cuba and Pakistan tabled draft texts.  The former introduced a draft resolution on the use of mercenaries as a means of violating human rights and impeding the exercise of the right of peoples to self-determination (document A/C.3/69/L.53) and the latter presented a draft text on the universal realization of the right of peoples to self-determination (document A/C.3/69/L.55).

On human rights questions, draft resolutions were introduced by representatives of Brazil, Morocco, Somalia and Saudi Arabia as well as Italy, on behalf of the European Union.  Those draft texts were, respectively, the right to privacy in the digital age (document A/C.3/69/L.26), International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance (document A/C.3/69/L.34), International Albinism Awareness Day (document A/C.3/69/L.35), combating intolerance, negative stereotyping, stigmatization, discrimination, incitement to violence and violence against persons, based on religion or belief (document A/C.3/69/L.39) and freedom of religion or belief (document A/C.3/69/L.40).

A representative of Cuba then tabled draft texts on the promotion of peace as a vital requirement for the full enjoyment of all human rights by all (document A/C.3/69/L.41), right to food (document A/C.3/69/L.42) and promotion of a democratic and equitable international order (document A/C.3/69/L.43).  Finland’s representative introduced a draft text on extrajudicial or arbitrary executions (document A/C.3/69/L.47).

Syria’s delegate, exercising the right of reply, said that the draft text concerning his country [“L.31”] had targeted his Government with a set of baseless allegations.  It also openly ignored the need to stop terrorist practices in all their forms under Security Council resolutions related to countering terrorism, he said, noting that the representative of Qatar had lacked legitimacy to speak on the issue as her State was committed to sponsoring terrorism along the Turkish-Syrian border and inside Lebanon, Iraq and other countries.  Calling on all countries to vote against the draft resolution, he said, the Committee should discuss the financing of terrorism because millions of dollars were being deposited into bank accounts in Qatar for use by terrorist organizations.

Responding to her counterpart, Qatar’s delegate said the draft resolution had been sponsored by more than 60 Member States, who were being attacked by the representative of Syria as he was incapable of addressing the concerns contained in it.  Concluding, the use of chemical weapons by the Syrian regime was a gross terrorist attack, she said, inviting Member States to support the draft resolution as a message that the international community would not accept impunity.

The Third Committee will reconvene at 10 a.m. on Thursday, 13 November, to take action on a number of draft resolutions.

For information media. Not an official record.