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General Assembly: Meetings Coverage


Concerned by a tidal wave of pressing global challenges from the spike in misinformation and disinformation to widening digital gaps, delegates today underscored the essentiality of multilingualism while outlining several concrete recommendations for the United Nations Department of Global Communications, as the Committee on Information concluded the general debate of its forty-fifth session.


Emphasizing the importance of trustworthy, verifiable information in a world beset with crises and in an environment rife with inaccurate reports, delegates today commended an ongoing initiative by the Department of Global Communications to draft a code of conduct to promote integrity in public information, while urging it to mainstream multilingualism and redouble efforts to combat misinformation and disinformation.


Briefing the General Assembly today, the Head of the Mechanism established to advance justice in Syria reported on that body’s continuing efforts over the past year, detailing its work with jurisdictions and investigations, but noting in light of increasing demand for its services that predictable financing through the regular budget and voluntary contributions by Member States are essential for it to continue serving the interests of victims, survivors and their families.


Amid a plethora of global, overlapping crises on the United Nations agenda, the Department of Global Communications remains guided by a systematic, data‑driven approach focused on audiences and impact as it communicates facts, captures imaginations and conveys hope, its top official told the Committee on Information during the opening of the forty-fifth session today.


​​​​​​​Concluding its resumed session today debating on whether to codify the International Law Commission’s draft articles on crimes against humanity into a convention, the Sixth Committee (Legal) heard oral reports from co-facilitators on the draft articles’ five Thematic Clusters, as speakers emphasized the need to end such crimes, with some expressing readiness to negotiate a new international instrument.


Recommendations by the International Law Commission are not binding and accepting them is “entirely in the hands of Member States”, a United Nations senior principal legal officer told the Sixth Committee (Legal) today during its resumed session, as he briefed delegates on the Commission’s procedure with the General Assembly and its process in drafting the articles on prevention and punishment of crimes against humanity.


As the Sixth Committee (Legal) continued its resumed session today to consider the International Law Commission’s recommendation to codify a convention on crimes against humanity, speakers deliberated over two clusters of draft articles addressing measures States should take on national platforms regarding those crimes, while also exploring the methods of international cooperation between countries when considering extradition of alleged offenders.


As the Sixth Committee’s (Legal) resumed session on its agenda item “Crimes against humanity” entered its second day, delegates grappled with the challenge of defining such crimes in a way that balances facilitating future development on the one hand and establishing legal certainty on the other — all in service of preventing and punishing some of the most serious international crimes.