Third Committee Approves 10 Draft Resolutions, Including Texts on Glorification of Nazism and Other Heinous Practices, Homelessness, Equal Access to Justice
In a half day of intense action, the Third Committee (Social, Humanitarian and Cultural) today approved 10 draft resolutions on a range of topics, including homelessness, equal access to justice and combating glorification of Nazism and other practices contributing to contemporary forms of racism and xenophobia, which sparked debate about politicization of human rights issues and effective multilateralism.
In the morning, the Committee approved the draft “Combating glorification of Nazism, neo-Nazism and other practices that contribute to fueling contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance” in a recorded vote of 112 in favour to 50 against, with 14 abstentions. The text would have the General Assembly express alarm at the spread in many parts of the world of various extremist political parties, ideologies and groups of a racist or xenophobic character, including neo-Nazis and skinhead groups. It would also condemn any denial of the Holocaust, as well as any manifestation of religious intolerance or violence.
Introducing the draft, the representative of the Russian Federation recalled that the United Nations was created in the aftermath of the victory over Nazism to ensure that history would not repeat itself. Although the resolution has been adopted every year since 2005, the phenomena the text addresses have worsened, he said, citing a rise in Islamophobia and Christianophobia. “The approval of this document is not only our duty to those who created the UN, it is our duty to future generations” he said.
First taking up amendment “L.58”, which inserts a new operative paragraph that “Notes with alarm that the Russian Federation has sought to justify its territorial aggression against Ukraine on the purported basis of eliminating neo‑Nazism, and underlines that the pretextual use of neo-Nazism to justify territorial aggression seriously undermines genuine attempts to combat neo-Nazism”. Introducing the text, the representative of Albania said draft resolution “L.7” purports to combat Nazism, but actually manipulates history. Its main sponsor, the Russian Federation, has deployed disinformation to justify its aggression against Ukraine, he said.
Speaking before a recorded vote for the amendment, the representative of the Russian Federation said his delegation would vote against it, describing it as “a procedural provocation”, adding that “it is a topical and not a country resolution”. The amendment politicizes the issue, he said, criticizing the sponsors’ desire to divide Member States.
To counter, the representative of Ukraine said that “L.7” has nothing in common with a genuine fight against these scourges. Instead, it serves Moscow to justify its brutal war against her country and its heinous crimes against humanity, she said, recalling the 5 October mass murder of 59 civilians by the Russian Federation.
Following approval of the amendment in a recorded vote of 66 in favour to 26 against, with 67 abstentions, the representative of Indonesia voiced regret over the outcome. Citing Israel’s persistent attacks in Gaza, she decried the stark double standard where “aggression is selectively condemned based on the perpetrator rather than the act”.
Meanwhile, the representative of Israel said that the 7 October massacre in her country was a reminder of the darkest chapter of the history of the Jewish people and expressed concern over a recent increase in anti-Semitism by as much as 500 per cent. Her delegation voted in favour of “L.7”, but opposed politicization of the text, she said. Singapore’s delegate said the issue at hand must not be politicized or instrumentalized amid widening societal fault lines, noting her delegation’s vote in favour of the text, as well as the amendment.
The representative of Australia said that while her delegation abstained from the vote on “L.7” in previous years, it voted against it this year over concerns that the resolution will be used as further disinformation justifying the war in Ukraine — mischaracterizing States’ obligations on human rights.
The representative of Egypt said her delegation voted for the resolution, underscoring that the same countries who consistently condemn what they describe as “Russian aggression against Ukraine” have shown double standards in “failing to equally condemn the Israeli genocide and aggression against the civilian population of Gaza by also justifying this aggression”.
In other action, the Committee approved by consensus the draft resolution “Inclusive policies and programmes to address homelessness, including in the aftermath of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19)”, which would have the General Assembly urge Member States to consider people experiencing homelessness in implementing programmes and policies for participation in society and access to affordable housing, and to align those efforts with international human rights obligations.
Introducing the draft, the representative of Madagascar, speaking on behalf of the African Group, noted the text gives rise to total requirements of $119,600 in 2025. She noted that, following the pandemic, homelessness directly impacted Africa and threatened the lives of millions of its people. The representative of Canada, speaking also for New Zealand and Australia, voiced regret that Member States were not given sufficient time to assess the budget implications and would discuss them the Fifth Committee (Administrative and Budgetary).
Meanwhile, the representative of the United Kingdom criticized operative paragraph 19, noting that his country does not support limits on increases on rent controls in the private sector. Historical evidence suggests that those will discourage investment in the sector and lead to declining property standards.
Also approved by consensus were drafts on albinism; cooperatives; the seventy-fifth anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights; the fourteenth United Nations Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice; reducing reoffending; Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice; technical assistance for the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime related to counter-terrorism; and equal access to justice.
Taking the floor to make a statement on all resolutions passed this session, the representative of the United States said that Third Committee resolutions do not create new obligations under international law. The United States is fully committed to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which is a non-binding document, she noted, adding that the right to development does not have an internationally agreed upon meaning and the country opposes mention to the phrase in resolutions. The United States does not accept that sanctions are violations of human rights, she said, adding that they can play a valuable role in preventing human rights abuses and encouraging accountability.
Turning to albinism, the representative of Malawi introduced the draft resolution titled “Persons with Albinism” (document A/C.3/78/L.10), which she noted was a technical update from previous texts. The Secretariat has failed to implement operative paragraph 11 from last year’s draft, which called on the Secretary-General to present a report on the challenges of people with albinism during this session, she said, noting that a report would have been helpful in drafting this current resolution. The absence of the report is a missed opportunity to deliberate on challenges of persons with albinism, especially in the post-COVID‑19-pandemic period, she said. However, the draft remains relevant to persons with albinism and calls upon Member States to include persons with albinism.
The Committee then approved “L.10” by consensus, by which the General Assembly would urge Member States to continue to meet their obligations to uphold the human rights of persons with albinism, including the rights to life, liberty, security of person, education, work, an adequate standard of living and the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health. It would also encourage Member States to end impunity for violence against persons with albinism, by amending laws, where applicable, and by bringing perpetrators to justice. By other terms, it would encourage Member States to adopt, if necessary, national action plans and legislation, on the rights of persons with albinism, in conformity with their international human rights obligations and commitments. The draft has no budget implications.
The representative of Madagascar, speaking on behalf of the African Group, introduced the draft resolution on “Inclusive policies and programmes to address homelessness, including in the aftermath of the coronavirus disease (COVID‑19)” (document A/C.3/78/L.13), which gives rise to total requirements of $119,600 in 2025. Noting that Africa is one of the regions most affected by the pandemic, she said homelessness directly impacted the continent and threatened the lives of millions of its people. Her Group submitted the draft resolution for the first time during the General Assembly’s seventy-sixth session, she recalled, noting that, by the text adopted by consensus, the Assembly urged Member States that their homelessness policies comply with international human rights obligations and are consistent with the 2030 Agenda. She invited Member States to co-sponsor the draft resolution in the current session with all its technical updates.
The representative of Japan underscored the importance of the resolution, recalling that it joined consensus on the resolution when it was first adopted during the seventy-sixth session. He voiced regret, however, about the UN Secretariat’s last-minute circulation last night of the oral statement, which did not give Member States sufficient time to assess programme budget needs. Noting that Japan has repeatedly requested the Secretariat to improve the timing for programme budget implications, he asked the Secretariat to improve its methods in this respect, noting that his delegation will discuss programme budget implications at the Fifth Committee (Administrative and Budgetary).
The representative of Canada, speaking also for New Zealand and Australia, also voiced regret that Member States were not given sufficient time to assess proposed programme budget implications. She asked the Secretariat to ensure the circulation of any oral statements or programme budget implications with adequate notice in the future, adding that her delegation looks forward to discussing the oral statement at the Fifth Committee (Administrative and Budgetary).
The Committee then approved “L.13” without a vote, by which the Assembly would urge Member States to consider people experiencing homelessness in designing, implementing, creating and evaluating policies, programmes and strategies for full, equal, meaningful, effective, constructive and sustainable participation in society and access to affordable, stable, safe and adequate housing. It would also urge Member States to ensure that those efforts are compliant with their applicable international human rights obligations as well as oriented towards achieving Sustainable Development Goals and fulfilling the commitment of leaving no one behind.
Taking the floor after the action, the representative of the United States, regarding the resolution’s references to economic, social and cultural rights and the 2030 Agenda, referred to her country’s general statement, which she said will be posted on the United States Mission’s website on the final day of the Committee’s session and included in the Digest of United States Practice in International Law. Noting that the United States is not a party to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, she said the resolution should not try to define those rights or related rights. Her delegation joined consensus with the express understanding that the resolution does not alter the current state of conventional or customary international law, which does not contain a stand-alone right to adequate housing. Voicing support for Japan’s statement, she encouraged the Secretariat to share information as early in the process as possible and in advance of the final tabling of the draft resolution.
The representative of the United Kingdom, addressing operative paragraph 19, said his country does not support rent controls in the private rental sector to set a limit on rent increases, noting that historical evidence suggests that those will discourage investment in the sector and lead to declining property standards, which will not help landlords or tenants. He voiced regret that his delegation did not have the opportunity to give proper consideration to the costs associated with the commission of the Secretary-General's report and urged the Secretariat to work collaboratively with concerned delegations to take a more sensible and cost-effective approach.
The Committee next took up the draft resolution titled “Cooperatives in social development” (document A/C.3/78/L.11), which the Chair noted contains no programme budges implications.
Introducing the draft, the representative of Mongolia said that 10 per cent of workers worldwide are in cooperatives, which are particularly important in the post-COVID-19 pandemic period. Cooperatives have the potential to reduce inequalities and contribute to resilient food systems as well as the development of women, youth and rural communities. She highlighted changes to operative paragraphs, calling on the Committee to approve the draft by consensus.
The Committee approved “L.11” without a vote. By its terms, the General Assembly would recognize that cooperatives promote the participation in economic and social development of local communities and all people, including women, persons with disabilities and Indigenous Peoples, contributing to the eradication of poverty and hunger. Noting with appreciation celebration of the International Year of Cooperatives in 2012, the Assembly would call for the proclamation of another International Year of Cooperatives in 2025, encouraging all Member States and relevant stakeholders to take advantage of the Year as a way of raising awareness of their contribution to implementing the Sustainable Development Goals and overall social and economic development.
Speaking after the vote, the representative of Mexico said her country has created mechanisms to expand the social sector, including cooperatives. Mexico understands the functioning of cooperatives and recognizes that they play an important role in social development. However, recalling her delegation’s objection to defining the role of facilitators for the Summit of the Future during negotiation of the draft, she said that Mexico dissociates from preambular paragraph 12 and will not interpret it as binding for the Summit of the Future.
The Committee next took up the draft resolution titled “Combating glorification of Nazism, neo-Nazism and other practices that contribute to fuelling contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance” (document A/C.3/78/L.7), which the Chair noted contains no programme budget implications.
Introducing the draft, the representative of the Russian Federation recalled that, in 1949, the United Nations was created in the aftermath of the victory over Nazism to ensure that the history will not repeat itself. The General Assembly has been adopting this resolution since 2005; however, for the past 20 years, the matters contained therein have not been addressed properly and have worsened. Today, the world is witnessing, inter alia, the rise in Islamophobia, Christianphobia and antisemitism. Some countries have started waging a war on memorials that were established to glorify those who fought Nazism. In the streets of some European centres, there are neo-Nazi marches, he cautioned. In this context, he said that “the approval of this document is not only our duty to those who created the UN, it is our duty to future generations”.
The Committee then took up draft amendment A/C.3/78/L.58, which inserts a new operative paragraph, which “Notes with alarm that the Russian Federation has sought to justify its territorial aggression against Ukraine on the purported basis of eliminating neo-Nazism, and underlines that the pretextual use of neo-Nazism to justify territorial aggression seriously undermines genuine attempts to combat neo-Nazism”.
Introducing amendment, “L.58”, the representative of Albania said that, while this resolution purports to combat the glorification of Nazism and neo-Nazism, in reality, it manipulates the historical truth. The Russian Federation has deployed disinformation to justify its aggression against Ukraine. To counter this, this amendment was introduced, using verbatim language from the Special Rapporteur’s report. He noted that the request to insert this paragraph was shared with the facilitators; however, it was not facilitated. Time and again, Member States have asked the facilitator to consider new language that reflects genuine attempts to combat the glorification of Nazism. However, the Russian Federation has remained closed to genuine attempts to address this important issue. The integration of this amendment will ensure that the resolution reflects more accurately real-world events.
The representative of Spain, speaking on behalf of the European Union, underscored the Union’s commitment to the global fight against violent extremism, racism and anti-Muslim hatred. This year’s resolution is presented as “a technical rollover”, which it is not, he asserted, rejecting Moscow’s removal of operative paragraph 4, which notes with alarm that it has sought to justify its territorial aggression against Ukraine on the purported basis of eliminating neo-Nazism. This seriously undermines genuine attempts to combat Nazism, he stressed, adding that Moscow uses false narrative of de-Nazification, violating sovereignty and territorial integrity of a UN Member State.
The representative of the Russian Federation, noting that his delegation will not vote in favour of the amendment and calling on Member States to vote against it, said it politicizes the issue rather than finds solutions. Citing this proposal as “a procedural provocation”, he said “it is a topical and not a country resolution”. It highlights topics which are cross-border in nature. In its desire to turn the draft into a political country-based document, “the sponsors outdid themselves”, he said, criticizing their desire to bring a divide within UN Member States.
The representative of Australia, reiterating her Government’s commitment to the global fight against racism, expressed support for the amendment. The Russian Federation has sought to justify its aggression against Ukraine under the pretext of eliminating neo-Nazism, as documented by the UN-mandated Special Rapporteur. Moscow falsifies historical narratives to support its gross violations of international law, she emphasized.
The representative of Japan, noting that extreme ideologies have no place in the world, expressed deep concern that this critical issue is manipulated to justify Moscow’s actions in Ukraine and undermine genuine global efforts against neo-Nazism. Citing this as a betrayal of human rights values and international principles that the global community cherishes, he said even noble causes can be exploited, and opposed attempts to twist history.
The representative of Ukraine, strongly condemning all forms of Nazism and neo-Nazism, said the draft resolution has nothing in common with a genuine fight against these scourges. Instead, it serves Moscow to justify its brutal war against her country and its heinous crimes against humanity. An example of this manipulation occurred during a recent Security Council meeting, when the Russian Federation cynically justified the mass murder of 59 civilians on 5 October. On 7 October, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) confirmed the identity of the victims, noting that non were members of the Ukrainian armed forces.
A recorded vote was then requested.
The draft amendment was adopted by a recorded vote of 66 in favour to 26 against, with 67 abstentions.
The Committee then turned to a vote on the draft “L.7” as amended.
Speaking in explanation of vote before the vote, on behalf of the European Union, the representative of Spain said the battle against modern forms of extremist ideologies constitutes the Union’s firm priority. Firmly opposing all forms of antisemitism, he condemned the political misuse of anti-Nazi rhetoric and de-Nazification to justify the war against Ukraine. Under the pretext of the fight against Nazism, the Russian Federation has brought the horrors of war back to the European continent. For these reasons, the European Union’s Member States will vote no.
The representative of Indonesia acknowledged the alarming escalation in incidents fuelled by hatred, Islamophobia and Christianophobia. Given extremist violence that plagues societies, she underscored the urgency of a collective stand against the scourge of racism and extremism, in solidarity with the principles upheld in the draft. However, she expressed deep regret about the adoption of an amendment, which she cited as “a disheartening double-standard”. “It is impossible to overlook the glaring disparity of how we address instances of aggression and human rights abuses worldwide,” she stressed, adding that Israel’s actions have resulted in a human tragedy and “bear the hallmark of apartheid”. The persistent attacks on Palestinians and the sustainability of their livelihoods, with little humanitarian access, have profoundly altered Gaza. The stark double standard where “aggression is selectively condemned based on the perpetrator rather than the act must be addressed”, as it undermines the credibility of collective efforts to promote peace and human rights, she asserted.
The representative of Israel said the darkest chapter of the history of Jewish people — the Holocaust — serves as proof of how low human beings can sink morally when they follow such ideologies. The 7 October massacre was yet another reminder, she said, sounding alarm over the current rise of antisemitism worldwide, with numbers skyrocketing as high as 500 per cent. University students are being physically attacked based on their religion, as the world is once again witnessing the Jews being threatened. Her delegation will vote in favour; however, she opposed politicization of the draft.
The representative of Ukraine said that, despite the adoption of the amendment, the draft resolution still uses the goal of manipulation under the pretext of combatting neo-Nazism in Ukraine. She sounded alarm over Moscow’s continued summary executions, torture and rape, as well as its propaganda, which has actively promoted hatred against Ukrainians. This is evident through the repeated assertions that Ukraine does not exist. Against this backdrop, she encouraged States to vote against.
The representative of Belarus further condemned actions and attempts to focus on revisionism of the Second World War, voicing concern over international attempts to destroy monuments to those who fought Nazism during that war.
The Committee then adopted draft resolution “L.7” by a recorded vote of 112 in favour to 50 against, with 14 abstentions.
By its terms, the Assembly would express alarm at the spread in many parts of the world of various extremist political parties, ideologies and groups of a racist or xenophobic character, including neo-Nazis and skinhead groups. Further, it would note with concern that, even where neo-Nazis or extremists do not formally participate in Government, the presence therein of extreme right-wing ideologues can have the effect of injecting into governance the same ideologies that make neo-Nazism and extremism so dangerous.
Further by the text, the Assembly would firmly condemn incidents that glorify and promote Nazism, such as acts involving pro-Nazi graffiti and paintings, including on monuments dedicated to victims of the Second World War. It would express alarm over the use by extremist groups of the Internet and social media to recruit new members and to disseminate their hate-filled messages, while recognizing that the Internet can also be used to counteract these groups and their activities. The Assembly would condemn any denial of the Holocaust, as well as any manifestation of religious intolerance or violence against persons or communities on the basis of ethnic origin or religious belief.
The representative of Venezuela, speaking in explanation of vote after the vote and noting that his delegation co-sponsored the resolution, voiced regret over the hostile amendment aimed at adulterating its key nature and purpose. Therefore, his delegation disassociates itself from operative paragraph 4, while voting in favour of the text as a whole.
The representative of Cuba, recalling that his delegation has always co-sponsored the resolution, said he voted against the amendment, which was brought forward for the second time, as it diluted consensus and tried to mention a specific context, despite the resolution’s thematic nature. On that, he pointed out that violent acts against ethnic and religious minorities as an expression of Nazism and neo-Nazism are rising in countries such as the United States, and that such terms are also being used for Israel’s apartheid and ongoing genocide. Observing that none of those who voted in favour of the amendment voted in favour of the text, despite its adoption, he said his delegation does not agree with the included operative paragraph amendment, which does not contain agreed language.
The representative of Malaysia, while voting in favour of the resolution as a whole, said the included amendment shifts the focus from a thematic resolution to one targeting specific countries, noting that those who proposed it “ironically” voted against the text. “There is a country abusing a term associated with a specific dark period of history to indiscriminately attack an entire population, causing the deaths of mostly women and children,” he stressed, noting his delegation’s disassociation from operative paragraph 4.
The United States’ delegate opposed any attempts by the Russian Federation to manipulate the United Nations system to spread disinformation, including the present resolution. The text is particularly “egregious” in light of that country’s false accusations of Nazism to justify its war of aggression against Ukraine. The resolution does not make a serious effort to combat Nazism, antisemitism, and other forms of intolerance; it instead attempts to instrumentalize history to justify its aggression, she said, calling it a “shameful political ploy”. While the United States supports the adopted amendment, her delegation has serious concerns with some portions of the text, including its use of Article 4 of the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination and Article 20 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights to service of undue restrictions on freedom of expression. As well, she regretted the lack of space provided for meaningful discussions on the text, aside from one “sham informal”. Therefore, her delegation voted against the text, as it has done since 2005.
The representative of Nicaragua, voicing regret over attempts to politicize the resolution, wished to disassociate from operative paragraph 4, which contains non-consensual language and undermines the spirit of the text.
South Africa’s delegate reaffirmed his country’s co-sponsorship of the important thematic resolution. However, he also disassociated from operative paragraph 4, which introduces country-specific language into a thematic resolution.
The representative of Belarus, meanwhile, voiced “shock and horror” about the unfolding of episodes at present which evoke black and white photographs from the 1940s, of gatherings of veterans of the Waffen-SS, torchlit processions, and standing ovations to Nazis, as a result of policies to exonerate and justify Nazis. “Eyewitness statements remind us that Nazism is not just hatred to other people, it is cold-hearted, unadulterated evil,” he emphasized. The unity and spirit of cooperation underpinning the courage of Allied soldiers, including the Normandie-Niemen squadron, has been forgotten, he said, disassociating himself from the text included by the adopted amendment.
Canada’s delegate voiced concern over the Russian Federation’s use of “neo-Nazism” as a pretext to justify its illegal territorial aggression, adding that such a “false narrative” undermines genuine attempts to combat it. As well, she noted that the text is “problematic”, and that suggestions to amend it to reflect contemporary forms of racism and address issues around freedom of expression were not addressed by the facilitator.
The representative of Sri Lanka, reaffirming support for the Durban Declaration and Programme of Action, said that operative paragraph 4 politicizes the issue and introduces a narrow, country-specific approach to a thematic resolution. Therefore, his delegation abstained from the vote on the amendment and disassociates from its contents, while voting in favour of the resolution. Observing that delegations that put forward the amendment voted against the text despite the adoption of the changes they proposed, he underlined the need for non-selectivity in the promotion of human rights.
The representative of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea regretted ongoing attempts to politicize the issue through the confrontational amendment targeting a specific country, which his delegation voted against. Such language promotes distrust and confrontation between Member States, he said, noting his delegation’s disassociation from operative paragraph 4.
For his part, the delegate of the Russian Federation thanked all those who supported the resolution, despite the “blatant procedural provocations” by those undermining its adoption. While the historic truth that led to the establishment of the United Nations must be upheld, the introduction of operative paragraph 4 had nothing to do with the text’s main thrust. Responding to accusations about his delegation not being prepared to negotiate or have consultations on the text by those who abstained or voted against it, he said those delegations officially stated that they were not prepared to participate in any negotiations on it, although they now claim they had no opportunity to put forward proposals and amendments. “Please ask them: what do they want here? We seem to see a split personality going on,” he added.
The representative of Austria, aligning himself with the European Union, condemned the illegal war of aggression against Ukraine and the Russian Federation’s inappropriate use of “de-Nazification” to justify its aggression against that country. While the bloc actively engaged in discussions on the text in the past, their concerns were not addressed year after year. Emphasizing that the resolution “should not be co-opted for political purposes”, he said his country will continue to vote against it.
China’s delegate, noting his country’s co-sponsorship of the thematic resolution, regretted the imposition of country-specific content into it. It is ironic that among the sponsors of the amendment was a country that falsified the history of the Second World War by refusing to admit to its war crimes, including “massive” crimes of sexual violence. Therefore, his delegation disassociates itself from the amendment to “L.7”.
The representative of Japan, noting that the text was “flawed in scope and execution”, regretted its “selective focus and lack of balance”. Recalling his earlier statement, he said he voted against the text due to its unacceptable use of anti-racist rhetoric to justify the Russian Federation’s aggression in Ukraine. As such, the text unites rather than divides, on issues pertaining to human rights and dignity.
Singapore’s delegate said the issue at hand must not be politicized or instrumentalized, given its importance, amid widening societal fault lines. Therefore, her delegation voted in favour of the text, as well as the amendment, leading to the inclusion of operative paragraph 4.
The representative of Sweden, also speaking on behalf of the Nordic-Baltic countries of Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania and Norway, said that, although the text contained some valid language, its context was “sinister” at its core. She rejected the false narrative it introduced to justify the Russian Federation’s war against Ukraine, and the attempt to annex a sovereign country, adding that such a misuse of the text undermines the genuine fight against heinous ideologies. While her bloc voted in favour of the amendment, the resolution contains problematic language, and deserves a more inclusive approach, she said, noting the lack of serious engagement on it by the Russian Federation, which put forth the text as a “fait accompli”. That country should give up its role if it does not intend to facilitate a fair process, she said, noting the bloc’s vote against the resolution as a whole.
Slovenia’s delegate, aligning with the European Union, noted his country’s membership in the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance and its role in defeating fascism and Nazism. Any attempt to instrumentalize the fight against racism to justify the Russian Federation’s military aggression under the pretext of fighting neo-Nazism is unacceptable; therefore, his country voted against the text.
New Zealand’s representative voiced regret about the misappropriation of the text to justify an illegal invasion, while noting her country’s stance against Nazism and its concern with rising global trends of intolerance. She further regretted the lack of a broader scope towards contemporary forms of racism and related intolerance in the text, underscoring the vital need for a more inclusive and intersectional approach.
The representative of Switzerland condemned all forms of racial discrimination and xenophobia, including Nazism and neo-Nazism, as they engender fear and lead to violence. The current increase in violence in the Middle East has repercussions around the world, she said, noting that her country takes a strong stance against discrimination based on religion, including antisemitism, Christianophobia or Islamophobia. To that end, she called for an end to hate speech likely to incite violence. The resolution that has been adopted contains important elements, she noted, but her country is concerned about the Russian Federation continuing to justify its aggression in Ukraine under pretexts of denazification. She called for an end to any use of the term in that context. Switzerland voted for the amendment, she said, noting with regret that the resolution does not refer to more contemporary forms of racism and is instrumentalized for political gain. Switzerland abstained from voting for “L.7” as a whole.
The representative of Sudan said the amendment strays from the main purpose of the resolution. Politicization of the resolution is not desirable, she added, noting that her delegation voted against the amendment and dissociates from it, but voted for the resolution as a whole.
The representative of Australia expressed deep concern over weaponization of the Holocaust and Nazism in the Russian Federation’s invasion of Ukraine — a gross violation of international law. While the resolution addresses some elements of Nazism and neo-Nazism, Australia voted against “L.7”, as it is concerned the resolution will be used as further disinformation justifying the war in Ukraine, mischaracterizing Member States obligations on human rights. Traditionally, Australia has abstained from the draft, she said, but the Russian Federation denied opportunities for negotiation under the pretext of technical rollovers. In the future, all must be allowed to contribute to these resolutions, she said, condemning the Russian Federation’s illegal and immoral invasion of Ukraine, and calling on the former to remove its troops from the latter.
The representative of Algeria said his country voted for the resolution as a means of combating discrimination in the pursuit of peace. Algeria supports efforts to combat all forms of intolerance, which have increased with the misuse of digital technologies. He underscored the importance of the Durban Declaration of 2001. His delegation abstained from voting on the amendment, which is consistent with its refusal to politicize human rights. He called on States to maintain the technical nature of such resolutions, taking into account concerns of all delegations.
The representative of Egypt said her country is committed to combatting racism. As such, it has consistently voted for this resolution, she said, decrying attempts by some countries to politicize it. The same countries who consistently condemn what they describe as “Russian aggression against Ukraine” have shown double standards in “failing to equally condemn the Israeli genocide and aggression against the civilian population of Gaza by also justifying this aggression”. Against this backdrop, Egypt voted against the amendment, but voted for the resolution as a whole. She dissociated from operative paragraph 4.
The representative of Liechtenstein condemned all forms of racism, noting with regret that the resolution just adopted uses false narratives to justify the illegal invasion of Ukraine. His country supported the amendment to the resolution, he said, noting with regret the Russian Federation’s lack of engagement in expanding the text. His delegation voted against “L.7”, he said.
The representative of Syria noted that Western countries reaffirmed their position against Nazism and neo-Nazism, but voted against “L.7”. While the representative of the United States called this resolution “a shameful ploy”, it seems like their position is the shameful ploy. If one is against all forms of racism, including Nazism, one would vote for the resolution, he said. Voting against it raises questions about the credibility of those countries, he noted, adding that their credibility is already questionable due to their blind support for the war of genocide committed by the occupation power in the State of Palestine. He underlined his delegation’s dissociation from the amending paragraph.
The representative of Senegal welcomed the Russian Federation’s work on this draft and adoption of the text, which displays the Committee’s commitment to combatting racism. Senegal is a co-sponsor of the text, he said, noting that discrimination is increasing and stressing that the international community must rise to the challenge in combating it. His delegation voted against the amendment, which politicizes the debate and moves farther away from the true fight against racism. The amendment represents double standards, he said.
The representative of Nigeria said her country attaches great importance to the draft and voted for the resolution, but dissociates from any politicization and the amendment.
The Committee next took up the draft resolution titled “Commemoration of the seventy-fifth anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights” (document A/C.3/78/L.25), which the Chair noted contained no programme budget implications.
The Committee then approved, without a vote, draft “L.25”.
By its terms, the General Assembly would emphasize that the seventy-fifth anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the thirtieth anniversary of the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action offer valuable opportunities to raise awareness and reflect on achievements, best practices and challenges regarding the full realization of human rights for all, without discrimination of any kind. The Assembly would urge States to redouble efforts in fulfilling their duty to promote and protect all human rights and fundamental freedoms, and implement provisions enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action.
The Committee then took up the draft resolution titled “Follow-up to the Fourteenth United Nations Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice and preparations for the Fifteenth United Nations Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice” (document A/C.3/78/L.2) which, if adopted, will give rise to budgetary implications under the proposed programme budget for 2025 and 2026 to cover the activities of the fifteenth crime congress and its preparatory activities.
The representative of the Committee Secretariat further noted that adoption of the draft resolution will not entail any additional appropriation under the programme budget for 2024. He said that, as the Secretariat is not currently in a position to determine the requirements for 2025 and 2026, resource requirements for 2025 and 2026 will be presented when a decision on details of the format of the proposed regional preparatory meetings of the fifteenth congress and of the congress itself is taken, in accordance with rule 153 of the rules of procedure of the General Assembly, for its consideration at the seventy-ninth and eightieth sessions, respectively.
The Committee then approved, without a vote, draft “L.2”.
By its terms, the Assembly would stress the importance of undertaking all preparatory activities for the fifteenth congress in a timely and concerted manner. It would request the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice to continue implementing the appropriate policy and operational measures for the follow-up to the Kyoto Declaration, including through the holding of intersessional thematic discussions to facilitate the sharing of information and lessons learned among Member States and relevant stakeholders. It would decide that the duration of the fifteenth congress should not exceed eight days and that the Commission gives due consideration to the report of the fifteenth congress. Also, it would request the Secretary-General to prepare a discussion guide for the regional preparatory meetings for the fifteenth congress and for the congress itself in a timely manner.
The Committee next took up the draft resolution titled “Reducing reoffending through rehabilitation and reintegration” (document A/C.3/78/L.3), which the Chair noted contains no programme budget implications.
By its terms, the Assembly would encourage Member States to develop comprehensive strategies to reduce reoffending through effective interventions for the rehabilitation and reintegration of offenders. It would also encourage Member States to promote a rehabilitative environment in correctional facilities, including through implementing effective treatment programmes based on an individual assessment, and provide offenders with access to vocational and educational programmes. It would further encourage Member States to take into account relevant United Nations standards in crime prevention and criminal justice, mainstream a gender perspective and promote the social rehabilitation and reintegration of offenders. The Assembly would also request the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime to support the efforts of Member States to reduce reoffending through the promotion of rehabilitative environments and reintegration by providing technical assistance to Member States.
The Committee then approved, without a vote, draft “L.3”.
The Committee next took up the draft resolution titled “Enhancing the contributions of the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice to the accelerated implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development” (document A/C.3/78/L.4), which the Chair noted contains no programme budget implications.
The Committee then approved, without a vote, draft “L.4”.
By its terms, the Assembly would underscore the role of the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice as the principal policymaking body of the United Nations in the field of crime prevention and criminal justice. It would request the Commission to encourage Member States presenting voluntary national reviews at the high-level political forum on sustainable development to share their experiences, progress made and impediments in implementing those aspects of the 2030 Agenda that are related to the work of the Commission.
The Committee next took up the draft resolution titled “Technical assistance provided by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime related to counter-terrorism” (document A/C.3/78/L.5), which the Chair noted contains no programme budget implications.
The Committee then approved, without a vote, draft “L.5”.
By its terms, the Assembly would reaffirm that terrorism in all its forms and manifestations constitutes one of the most serious threats to international peace and security and that all acts of terrorism are criminal and unjustifiable, and that they are to be unequivocally condemned. It would request the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) to enhance its assistance related to international legal and judicial cooperation pertaining to countering terrorism, including in criminal matters related to foreign terrorist fighters. Further, the Assembly would request UNODC to consider supporting initiatives to involve youth in the promotion of a culture of peace, tolerance and intercultural and interreligious dialogue. It would also request UNODC to continue to provide technical assistance to Member States related to collecting, analysing, preserving and sharing forensic and electronic evidence for the investigation and prosecution of terrorism and terrorism-related offences and related to enhancing mutual legal assistance.
The Committee then took up the draft resolution titled, “Equal access to justice for all” (document A/C.3/78/L.6), which the Chair noted has no programme budget implications.
The Committee then approved, without a vote, draft “L.6”.
By the text, the Assembly would emphasize the right of equal access to justice for all, including people in vulnerable situations, and the importance of awareness-raising concerning legal rights, and commit to taking all necessary steps to provide fair, transparent, effective services that promote access to justice for all, including legal aid. It would also request the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) to continue developing technical tools and training materials based on United Nations standards and to provide technical and material assistance to Member States. As well, it would request UNODC to convene a meeting of experts, nominated by Member States, during the intersessional period, to share information on enhancing the functioning of criminal justice systems to ensure equal access to justice for all.
Taking the floor after the action, the representative of the United States said her delegation is pleased to welcome the UN’s adoption of the first-ever resolution on equal access to justice for all. As the international community celebrates the seventy-fifth anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the resolution affirms progress and will set the stage for new action to advance support for inalienable rights included in the Declaration, such as the right to an effective remedy and the right to a fair trial, she said.