Press Releases

                                                                                        5 July 2004

    Chairman of Ad Hoc Committee Commends Delegations’ Willingness to Work towards Solutions to Complex Issues of Draft Terrorism Conventions

    Significant Progress already Made, He Says in Closing Week-Long Eighth Session

    NEW YORK, 2 July (UN Headquarters) -- There was a genuine awareness of the importance of completing work on two counter-terrorism draft conventions -- one, a comprehensive treaty on terrorism, and the other on the suppression of nuclear terrorism -- at the “earliest possible moment” without sacrificing their content or effectiveness, the Chairman of the Ad Hoc Committee on Terrorism said today as the body concluded a week-long session.

    Closing the Committee’s eighth session since it was established by the General Assembly in 1996, Chairman Rohan Perera (Sri Lanka) said that, although the issues were complex and politically sensitive, delegations had maintained their willingness to seek solutions and, through the discussions, had further deepened their understanding of the critical outstanding areas.

    He said it was important to recognize that significant progress had already been made in preparing the draft conventions.  Hopefully, delegations could show increased flexibility and sufficient political will to bring that work to a successful conclusion by thinking creatively about possible solutions to the outstanding issues.

    The report adopted today (document A/AC.252/2004/CRP.1), as orally amended, contains three sections.  The first and second include, respectively, factual data and technical information relating to the Committee’s mandate; and a description of the session’s proceedings.  A third section of the report includes a recommendation, which the Committee also decided to adopt this morning, that the Sixth Committee (Legal) consider establishing a working group to continue elaborating the two draft conventions, and keep on its agenda the question of convening a high-level conference under United Nations auspices to formulate a joint organized response by the international community to terrorism in all its forms and manifestations.

    The report’s final section contains a list of written amendments and proposals submitted in connection with the elaboration of the draft international convention on the suppression of nuclear terrorism.  It would also reproduce a text of that draft prepared by the Bureau for discussion, as well as the text of a proposal submitted by the Syrian delegation regarding draft article 4.

    [Draft article 4 concerns those parties, including “armed forces during an armed conflict”, that are not governed by the convention.  Syria proposes to amend that article, the draft of which presently contains four paragraphs, by deleting paragraphs 2 and 3, which refer to the suppression of nuclear terrorism.].

    Representatives of the following countries thanked the Chairman, the Coordinators on the two drafts, and the Bureau members for their continued efforts:  Sierra Leone; Jordan (on behalf of the Arab Group); Turkey (on behalf of the Organization of Islamic Conference); Netherlands; and Trinidad and Tobago (on behalf of the Latin American and Caribbean Group).

    In addition to the Chairman, the Bureau members are:  Vice-Chairmen Carlos Fernando Diaz Paniagua (Costa Rica), Albert Hoffmann (South Africa) and Michael Bliss (Australia); and Rapporteur Lublin Dilja (Albania).

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