Special Committee on Decolonization Approves Draft Resolution Calling for Argentina, United Kingdom to Resume Talks Over Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Dispute
Amid affirmations of solidarity, the Special Committee on Decolonization approved a draft resolution today reiterating that a peaceful and negotiated settlement of the sovereignty dispute between Argentina and the United Kingdom was the only way to end the “special and particular” colonial situation of the Falkland Islands (Malvinas)*.
The text (document A/AC.109/2017/L.26), which called for those Governments to consolidate the current process of dialogue and cooperation by resuming negotiations in order to find a peaceful solution to the sovereignty dispute as soon as possible, was one of several approved without a vote.
Argentina’s Minister for Foreign Affairs and Worship renewed the full willingness of the Government to follow the only possible path for a peaceful and definite solution to the sovereignty dispute. The principle of self-determination did not apply to the Territory’s inhabitants and had not been mentioned in any of the more than 40 related General Assembly and Special Committee resolutions, he stressed.
While bilateral negotiations had reached a standstill, he said, Argentina had adopted measures to improve living conditions for the inhabitants. Since 2016, Argentina and the United Kingdom had taken steps and had signed a joint communiqué, designing a road map outlining their intention to resume dialogue on a number of aspects of the bilateral relationship. With the necessary political will, it was possible to reach a definitive solution.
During a hearing of petitioners, Michael Summers, Legislative Assembly, Falkland Islands (Malvinas), said the Territory was not a colony of the United Kingdom, but rather a self-governing Overseas Territory that had expressed its wish to remain so during the 2013 referendum. For two decades, he noted, the Special Committee had failed to accept that the development paths of Territories might not lead to free association or integration with an administering Power, nor full independence. The Special Committee could not support Argentina’s sanctions against the Territory — a form of “economic colonialism” — while condemning it elsewhere.
Luis Gustavo Vernet, a great-great-grandson of Luis Vernet, the first Argentine political and military commander of the Malvinas Islands and adjacent South Atlantic islands, reaffirmed that the Malvinas Islands, South Georgia Islands and South Sandwich Islands were an integral part of Argentina’s national territory. The United Kingdom’s usurpation of the Territory and removal of its Argentine residents had been acknowledged by everyone there, and that act of force should not generate any rights. The United Kingdom should work to resolve, through negotiations, the sovereignty dispute in a framework of dialogue, friendship and respect.
In the ensuing discussion, speakers from around the region expressed resounding support for Argentina’s claims to the Territory and surrounding maritime areas, and for resumed negotiations to end the sovereignty dispute. Several cited the outcomes of regional meetings attesting to that need. El Salvador’s representative, speaking for the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), recalled that the group’s Punta Cana Summit had heard additional pledges of support for that process.
Colombia’s delegate, speaking for the Ibero-American Summit, read from a declaration adopted by Heads of State and Government at that group’s 2016 meeting, calling on both parties to resume negotiations and refrain from activities that could lead to unilateral action. Peru’s representative, meanwhile, spoke for the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR), recalling a statement from a recent meeting in Ecuador encouraging such efforts.
Ecuador’s delegate, on behalf of the “Group of 77” developing countries and China, recalled a 23 September 2016 declaration, noting that natural resources exploration not authorized by Argentina in the Malvinas Islands was detrimental to its sovereignty over its continental shelf. It also recognized Argentina’s right to take legal action against non-authorized hydrocarbon exploration in that area.
Likewise, Paraguay’s representative, on behalf of the Southern Common Market (MERCOSUR), cited a 2015 communiqué recalling the validity of the mandate established by the 1976 resolution 31/49 urging parties to refrain from taking unilateral decisions that would lead to unilateral changes. Most recently, Mexico’s delegate cited a declaration adopted on 21 June by the Organization of American States on the matter, copies of which she said she would distribute.
In other action, the Special Committee approved resolutions on American Samoa (document A/AC.109/2017.L25), Pitcairn (document A/AC.109/2017.L20), Saint Helena (document A/AC.109/2017.L21), Turks and Caicos (document A/AC.109/2017.L22), and the United States Virgin Islands (document A/AC.109/2017.L23), as well as on economic and other activities which affect the interests of the peoples of the Non-Self-Governing Territories (document A/AC.109/2017/L.8), and on the implementation of the Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples by the specialized agencies and the international institutions associated with the United Nations (document A/AC.109/2017/L.9/Rev.1).
Chile’s representative introduced draft resolution “L.26” on behalf of Bolivia, Cuba, Ecuador, Nicaragua and Venezuela.
Also speaking today were representatives of Indonesia, Syria, Bolivia, Nicaragua, Venezuela, Cuba, Russian Federation, China, Antigua and Barbuda, Brazil, Guatemala, Honduras, Uruguay and Costa Rica.
Question of Falkland Islands (Malvinas)
RAFAEL DARÍO RAMÍREZ CARREÑO (Venezuela), Chair of the Special Committee on Decolonization, said his country had always stood shoulder-to-shoulder with Argentina in cooperation arising from the liberation movements led by Simón Bolívar. Argentina’s sovereignty claims over the Malvinas were shared by the overwhelming majority of the international community, and the Special Committee would spare no effort to resolve its sovereignty dispute with the United Kingdom.
IAN HANSEN, Legislative Assembly, Falkland Islands (Malvinas), said he was a sixth-generation islander whose ancestors had arrived some 175 years ago. Describing himself as being of Swedish descent, he said that since other Scandinavians had made the Falklands (Malvinas) their home during that time, “I do not believe in any way I can be regarded as part of an implanted population sent from the United Kingdom”. More than 3,400 people, from over 60 countries, lived and worked in the Territory. Describing Argentina’s claim as unfounded and unwelcome, he said that country had enforced an economic blockade against the Territory, denied the islanders access to flights from South America, and caused difficulties for vessels from the Territory using ports in Chile, Uruguay and Brazil. Charter flights to the Falklands (Malvinas) through Argentina’s air space were banned, as was the exchange of cruise-ship passengers. Argentine legislation stated that any oil company working in Falklands (Malvinas) territorial waters was doing so illegally and could be held to account, he said. The islanders’ desire for self-determination had been seen in the 2013 referendum, which had resulted in 99.8 per cent of them voting in favour of retaining their current political status as an Overseas Territory of the United Kingdom. The Territory received no financial aid from that country, made its own laws, regulated its own industry, and had enjoyed exponential economic growth over the last three decades, he emphasized, asking the Special Committee to ignore Argentina’s false claims and support the islanders’ wishes.
MICHAEL SUMMERS, Legislative Assembly, Falkland Islands (Malvinas), reaffirmed that the Territory was not a colony of the United Kingdom, saying he wished to defend it against Argentina’s colonial aspirations. The Falkland Islands (Malvinas) were self-governing as an Overseas Territory that had progressed beyond colonial status, having expressed the wish to remain so in a referendum. While he agreed that colonialism must be eradicated, no people should be subjugated against their will. The Territory’s constitution stated that all peoples had a right to self-determination, he said, adding that its people did not suffer the problems of Non-Self-Governing Territories where the administering Power wielded authority over natural resources. The territorial government had that responsibility. It was no surprise that Non-Self-Governing Territories from the Caribbean had not attended the recent Seminar in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, because the Special Committee had nothing to offer them, he said, adding that for two decades it had failed modernize its thinking and modes of operation, or to understand political and economic developments. It had failed to accept that Territories were on development paths that might not lead to free association or integration with an administering Power, and might never lead to full independence. “We’re not colonies with people subjugated and browbeaten,” he said, but rather “able to think for ourselves about what is right”. The Special Committee was stuck in an “ideological time warp”. Recalling the Secretary-General’s reminder that its role was to assist each Territory, he declared: “That is your task and your only task.” Argentina exercised economic sanctions against the people of the Falklands (Malvinas), not the United Kingdom, with which it said it had a dispute, constituting “pure, raw economic colonialism”. It was not good enough for much of the Special Committee to support such colonialism in the Territory while condemning it elsewhere, or turn a blind eye because it did not wish to be involved in a sovereignty dispute. He invited the Special Committee again to visit the Territory so it could understand the subject before it, and challenged Argentina to not block such a visit.
AMADU KOROMA (Sierra Leone), stressing that his country opposed colonialism in all its forms, expressed support for the principle of self-determination. He welcomed the progress between Argentina and the United Kingdom, as “a political solution is the only feasible way to resolve this problem,” he said. Those discussions must consider the interests of the Territory’s people. Recalling the Special Committee’s mandate to seek their interests, he urged a focus on reporting to other bodies on the economic, political and social situation in such Territories. It was important for it to encourage and report on economic growth in the Falklands (Malvinas). The destiny of the Territory’s people was in their hands, he said, a point that Sierra Leone had always supported. The Special Committee could not dictate the way people wished to live. “It is for them to choose their path,” he said.
ALEJANDRO JACOBO BETTS, a former resident of the Falkland Islands (Malvinas), emphasizing that the occupation had never been accepted by Argentina, provided his perspective on the history of the Territory, dating back to 1765, when he said the United Kingdom had first sent a secret mission to the area. A treaty signed in 1849 between Argentina and the United Kingdom had not mentioned the Territory and from then until 2013, not a single comment by colonial officials had brought attention to the alleged Argentine forfeiture of sovereignty. All official Anglo-Argentine declarations following the adoption of General Assembly resolution 2065 (XX) had acknowledged the dispute, including the 2016 joint communiqué signed in Buenos Aires. That “safeguard” permitted negotiations and its inclusion was indispensable and inevitable until such a time in which a definitive agreement was reached that resolved the restitution of sovereignty to Argentina.
Turning to legislative issues, he said a 2008 constitutional order had demonstrated clearly the United Kingdom’s monarchical powers over the colony. In accordance with attributes granted in the British Settlement Acts of 1887 and 1945, the order regulated the delegation of monarchical powers of Government to a representative agent in the colonies, with article 22 referring to provisions of the Emergency Powers Order in Council of 1939. Reflecting on the current situation, he said one third of the population could not participate in elections due to existing legislation and that the Territory represented a colonial situation. The task ahead was to identify a process of addressing and remedying that situation, he said, expressing faith that the United Nations and the Special Committee would help to achieve that.
LUIS GUSTAVO VERNET, a great-great-grandson of Luis Vernet, the first Argentine political and military Commander of the Malvinas Islands and adjacent islands in the South Atlantic, said he had come to speak before the Special Committee to reaffirm that the Malvinas, South Georgia Islands and South Sandwich Islands were an integral part of the national territory of Argentina, which had legitimate, inalienable and imprescriptible rights over them. He recalled that in 1828, they were home to a stable, growing population where prosperity prevailed, as the Government of Argentina granted tax exemptions with the aim of fostering the economic development of the archipelago. At no point had the United Kingdom objected to the Argentine settlement on the Malvinas, despite the fact that public sovereignty acts had been performed.
Yet, the usurpation of the Malvinas Islands by the United Kingdom and the removal of the Argentine population that resided there was a history that everyone there acknowledged, he said. That act of force should not generate or create any rights whatsoever, as it reflected the imperialistic policy developed during the nineteenth century in the Americas, as well as in Asia and Africa. For that reason, it was expected that the Argentine claims would be addressed. Although it was not a legal title, the contiguity between the archipelago and the Territory’s shores should be mentioned. The Malvinas Islands were located in the natural prolongation of the Argentine territory, showing that those lands, from a geomorphological perspective, were an integral part of the Argentine territory. Given that the Argentine-British relations were extremely cordial at present, he believed that the United Kingdom should set itself to resolve, through negotiations, the existing sovereignty dispute over the Malvinas Islands, South Georgia Islands and South Sandwich Islands in a framework of dialogue, friendship and respect. He had no doubt that the Malvinas question could be solved in a framework of mutual respect of the parties’ rights and, in that context, he believed the time had come for the Argentine Government and the United Kingdom to end the sovereignty dispute.
CRISTIÁN BARROS MELET (Chile) introduced a draft resolution titled “Question of the Falkland Islands (Malvinas)” (document A/AC.109/2017/L.26), which outlined the main elements adopted by the United Nations on the matter over the years. The text enshrined the fact that the only solution to the question was a peaceful resolution between Argentina and the United Kingdom, the only two parties involved. Recent activities and declarations had demonstrated that the sovereignty dispute must be resolved. The draft text, he said, recognized the special and particular colonial situation that differed from other situations. It also requested the parties to renew negotiations with a view to finding a solution in line with United Nations principles.
JORGE MARCELO FAURIE, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Worship of Argentina, emphasized that eradicating colonialism was among the United Nations most significant achievements. He reiterated the full willingness of the Government to follow the only possible path for a peaceful and definite solution to the current sovereignty dispute in the Territory. The principle of self-determination did not apply to its inhabitants and had not been mentioned in any of the more than 40 related General Assembly and Special Committee resolutions. The United Kingdom had forcibly occupied the Territory in 1833 and expelled authorities and the population, thus violating their right to self-determination. Assembly resolution 2065 (XX) recognized the situation was a sovereignty dispute, he said, pointing out that decolonization and self-determination were not synonymous.
Argentina was strongly determined to respect and defend the way of life of the inhabitants, he said. Bilateral negotiations had reached a standstill, but parallel to those discussions, Argentina had adopted measures to improve their living conditions. Since 1982, the United Kingdom had refused to resume sovereignty negotiations. Yet, the armed conflicts that had taken place had not changed the legal nature of the dispute. Since 2016, Argentina and the United Kingdom had taken steps and had signed a joint communiqué, designing a road map showing their intention to resume dialogue on a number of aspects of the bilateral relationship. With the necessary political will, it was possible to reach a definitive solution.
HORACIO SEVILLA BORJA (Ecuador), speaking on behalf of the “Group of 77” developing countries and China, recalled the declaration adopted at the Group’s fortieth ministerial meeting on 23 September 2016, reaffirming the need for Argentina and the United Kingdom to resume negotiations towards finding a peaceful solution to the sovereignty dispute relating to the Malvinas Islands. The declaration, highlighting the right of Group Member States to sovereignty over their energy resources, noted that operations not authorized by Argentina in the Malvinas Islands relating to natural resources exploration were detrimental to its sovereignty rights over its continental shelf. It also recognized Argentina’s right to take legal action against non-authorized hydrocarbon exploration and exploitation in that area.
DIAN TRIANSYAH DJANI (Indonesia) said the Special Committee must focus on the 17 remaining Non-Self-Governing Territories, welcoming the various steps it had taken towards decolonization, including meetings and dialogues with administrative Powers and relevant parties. He strongly encouraged those actors that had cooperated with the Special Committee to continue to do so, stressing that peaceful dialogue would facilitate the process to find mutually acceptable solutions to the challenges ahead. Advocating peaceful negotiations as the way to end the sovereignty dispute between Argentina and the United Kingdom, he encouraged Argentina and the United Kingdom to resume negotiations towards that end. He expressed support for the Secretary-General’s efforts to assist those countries in complying with relevant Assembly resolutions and for the adoption of the resolution before the Special Committee by consensus.
LOUAY FALOUH (Syria) called for redoubled efforts to promote decolonization, which he said was a crime against humanity that contravened international law. Reiterating support for Argentina’s rights over the Malvinas Islands, South Georgia Islands and South Sandwich Islands and the surrounding maritime areas in a framework that would guarantee respect for its territorial integrity and exercise of sovereignty over all its territory, including the Malvinas, he said it was important to settle the various disputes. The Malvinas was a special case of colonization and he called for the unanimous adoption of the draft resolution.
PEDRO LUIS INCHAUSTE JORDÁN (Bolivia), associating with the Group of 77 and China, the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), and the Southern Common Market (MERCOSUR), reiterated support for Argentina in the sovereignty dispute over the Malvinas, South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands. He advocated a peaceful and final solution to the dispute, stressing that Bolivia, a co-sponsor of today’s resolution, supported Argentina’s right to those territories. Argentina had sovereignty over the Malvinas, as in 1873, the United Kingdom Navy had invaded that area and through force expelled the inhabitants. In 1975, the Assembly had adopted resolution 20/65 (XX), stating the existence of a sovereignty dispute and inviting both countries to negotiations in order to find a peaceful solution. Despite the fact that the Territory’s inhabitants were foreign, implanted by a foreign country, Argentina had respected their lifestyle. Yet, the United Kingdom continued to exploit natural resources and the military had violated the United Nations resolutions on the question. It was obliged to negotiate with Argentina to find a peaceful solution to the question of the Malvinas Islands, which it must fulfil in good faith in the context of international law.
JAIME HERMIDA CASTILLO (Nicaragua), associating himself with the Group of 77 and CELAC, said the current impasse over the question of the Malvinas Islands must be overcome through resumed negotiations with a view to reaching a peaceful and sustainable solution. Nicaragua stood beside Argentina’s legitimate rights over the Malvinas Islands, which had been occupied by the United Kingdom. Such views mirrored a special declaration on them that had emerged from the 2017 Punta Cana summit, he said, highlighting other efforts being made towards decolonization and consolidating Latin America and the Caribbean as a zone of peace. Expressing support for the related draft resolution, he said the text recognized a special and particular colonial situation.
DOUGLAS NICOMEDES ARCIA VIVAS (Venezuela) said the United Kingdom’s illegal occupation of the Malvinas Islands demonstrated that imperialist activities prevailed, flouting international laws. With the end of the Third International Decade for the Eradication of Colonialism (2011-2020) approaching, no clear resolution of the current dispute over the Territory was on the horizon. The United Kingdom’s refusal to negotiate went against various related resolutions, he said, expressing support for the Secretary-General’s call for action and for progress. Venezuela would continue to lend its support to efforts, including regional initiatives, to achieve a solution and supported Argentina’s position on the recent United Kingdom hydrocarbon initiative. Rejecting the United Kingdom’s 2016 military exercises in the area, he said such activities violated related resolutions. The situation was a unique case involving a sovereignty dispute, which should be peacefully resolved.
ANAYANSI RODRÍGUEZ CAMEJO (Cuba) said that despite repeated calls by the Special Committee and various related resolutions, no progress had been made towards a definitive solution to the prolonged controversy. Supporting Argentina’s legitimate rights in the sovereignty dispute, including by joining the recent Punta Cana summit, she expressed hope for a peaceful solution, which had been echoed by regional and international forums. Given the United Kingdom’s recent military exercises, she underlined the importance of efforts being made to ensure that the region remained a zone of peace. Dialogue and cooperation between the parties were necessary to arrive at a just, peaceful and definitive solution to the sovereignty dispute.
Acting without a vote, the Special Committee then approved the draft resolution (document A/AC.109/2017/L.26). By its terms, the General Assembly would call for the Governments of Argentina and the United Kingdom to consolidate the current process of dialogue and cooperation through the resumption of negotiations in order to find as soon as possible a peaceful solution to the sovereignty dispute.
Mr. FAURIE (Argentina), speaking after the action, welcomed the Special Committee’s support, saying that the text renewed the historical call of the United Nations that his country and the United Kingdom resume negotiations.
PETR V. ILIICHEV (Russian Federation) expressed support for finding a solution to the sovereignty dispute through dialogue directly between Argentina and the United Kingdom, in line with United Nations resolutions. He hoped the parties would honour commitments to existing obligation, including the Treaty for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons in Latin America and the Caribbean (Treaty of Tlatelolco).
LIU SONG (China) said the colonial situation in the Territory had resulted in many resolutions calling for negotiations between the United Kingdom and Argentina. Recognizing the latter’s sovereignty over the Territory, he hoped both parties would carry out a constructive dialogue to find a peaceful, just solution.
Ms. CHALLENGER (Antigua and Barbuda), underlining the importance of implementing relevant resolutions, called on parties to resume negotiations with a view to finding a just solution.
RUBÉN IGNACIO ZAMORA RIVAS (El Salvador), speaking on behalf of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), expressed strong support for Argentina and the resumption of negotiations with the United Kingdom. Dialogue and negotiation were the way forward, he said, recalling that the Punta Cana summit had seen additional pledges of support for that process. Reading from the special declaration that had emerged from the summit, he said member States had, among other things, called on the Secretary-General to fulfil his good offices to work towards resuming negotiations with a view to finding a peaceful solution.
GUSTAVO MEZA-CUADRA (Peru), speaking on behalf of the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR), said member States had frequently reiterated their support for Argentina, including in a declaration that had been made at a recent meeting in Ecuador. That statement had called for resuming negotiations and finding a just solution. UNASUR member States had in 2010 denounced the United Kingdom’s mineral exploration initiatives, which violated existing obligations, and, in a 2016 UNASUR declaration, had decried that country’s military exercises in the illegally occupied area. In his national capacity, he called for resumed negotiations between Argentina and the United Kingdom towards a peaceful solution.
MARÍA EMMA MEJÍA VÉLEZ (Colombia), speaking on behalf of the Ibero-American Summit, recalled the group’s 2016 meeting, at which members had adopted a declaration. Reading from that declaration, she said the Heads of State and Government of the Ibero-American Summit had called on both parties to resume negotiations and to refrain from activities that could lead to unilateral action. Welcoming the bilateral meetings in 2016 between the Heads of State of Argentina and the United Kingdom, she underscored the importance of dialogue and negotiation in resolving the dispute.
MAURO VIEIRA (Brazil), associating himself with CELAC, UNASUR and the Ibero-American Summit, called on both parties to return to the negotiating table. Alarmed by recent violations of various resolutions, which had, among other things, ordered both parties from refraining from making changes in the Territory, he said the United Kingdom must stop natural resource exploration of coastal areas. A negotiated solution was a desired goal shared by all developing countries, he said, drawing attention to a recent declaration that supported Argentina’s legitimate rights in the sovereignty dispute. Resumed negotiations were the only viable way of resolving the current situation, keeping in line with United Nations Charter principles and relevant resolutions.
Mr. ARENALES (Guatemala), associating himself with the Group of 77 and CELAC, said numerous resolutions had recognized the existence of a sovereignty dispute, which represented a special and particular colonial situation. The systematic expansion of the colonial Power had seen the occupation of the Malvinas Islands, including by importing the inhabitants that currently lived there. Negotiation and dialogue must lead towards a solution, he said, hoping parties would resume talks. It was time for multilateralism to prevail and contribute to resolving the colonial situation.
JULIO CÉSAR ARRIOLA RAMÍREZ (Paraguay), speaking on behalf of the Southern Common Market (MERCOSUR), said member States supported Argentina’s legitimate rights to the Malvinas Islands. Unilateral measures were incompatible with United Nations principles with regard to the sovereignty dispute. MERCOSUR had adopted a declaration on hydrocarbon exploration near Argentina’s continental shelf, which emphasized that both parties to the dispute must not take unilateral actions that could lead to changes in the current situation. Speaking in his national capacity, he said Argentina and the United Kingdom must resume negotiations as soon as possible to achieve a solution to the prolonged dispute.
DULCE SÁNCHEZ (Honduras) expressed support for Argentina’s sovereign rights to the Malvinas Islands. At the regional level, the recent Punta Cana summit was among several meetings that had produced declarations echoing that view. Recognizing the efforts of the United Nations and the Special Committee, she urged all stakeholders to work towards strengthening the Organization’s work.
MARÍA ANTONIETA JÁQUEZ HUACUJA (Mexico) said the dialogue between Argentina and the United Kingdom must be maintained and move towards finding a solution. Discouraging parties from taking any actions that might jeopardize the current situation, she noted the recent Punta Cana summit and the declaration it had produced in support of Argentina.
CRISTINA CARRIÓN (Uruguay), associating herself with the Group of 77, CELAC, UNASUR and MERCOSUR, highlighted a commitment to Argentina in the ongoing dispute. Recalling a 2014 regional meeting in Uruguay, she said member countries had condemned the United Kingdom’s exploitation of resources. She supported negotiations that would lead to a resolution of the dispute.
JUAN CARLOS MENDOZA-GARCÍA Costa Rica, associating himself with CELAC, recalled that there were still 17 Non-Self-Governing Territories and actions must be taken to address those situations. Costa Rica supported Argentina’s legitimate rights to the Malvinas Islands and welcomed progress that had been made since the Argentina-United Kingdom joint communiqué was signed in 2016. Lasting solutions must be found to such disputes to ensure that the world would soon be completely free from colonialism.
In other action, the Special Committee approved, without a vote, draft resolutions on American Samoa (document A/AC.109/2017.L25), Pitcairn (document A/AC.109/2017/L.20), Saint Helena (document A/AC.109/2017/L.21), Turks and Caicos (document A/AC.109/2017/L.22), and the United States Virgin Islands (document A/AC.109/2017/L.23).
By their terms, the General Assembly would reaffirm the inalienable right of the people of those Territories to self-determination, in conformity with the United Nations Charter and General Assembly resolution 1514 (XV), containing the Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples.
Acting again without a vote, the Special Committee approved a draft titled “Economic and other activities which affect the interests of the peoples of the Non-Self-Governing Territories” (document A/AC.109/2017/L.8).
Implementation of Decolonization Declaration by Specialized Agencies
It then took up a draft resolution on Implementation of the Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples by the specialized agencies and the international institutions associated with the United Nations (document A/AC.109/2017/L.9/Rev.1), and a related draft (documents A/AC.109/2017/L.10/Rev.1).
The representative of the Russian Federation said that although his country’s position on decolonization remained unchanged, such political issues distracted from other economic and social matters, which was why his delegation traditionally abstained from the vote on that text.
The Special Committee then approved draft resolution “L.9” without a vote.
* A dispute exists between the Governments of Argentina and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland concerning sovereignty over the Falkland Islands (Malvinas).