Press Releases

                                                                            25 May 2004

    NGO Committee Recommends 16 Organizations for Consultative Status, Defers Action on Five Others

    NEW YORK, 24 May (UN Headquarters) -- The Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) today recommended to the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) 16 organizations for consultative status, and deferred action on five applications.  In other action, it took note of over 20 quadrennial reports submitted by NGOs and deferred taking note of four such reports.

    The 19-member Committee uses various criteria to recommend general, special or roster status with ECOSOC, including the applicant’s mandate, governance and financial regime.  Organizations that have general and special consultative status can attend meetings of the Council and circulate statements of a certain length.  Those with general status can, in addition, speak at meetings and propose items for the Council’s agenda, while NGOs with roster status can only attend meetings. Non-governmental organizations with general and special consultative status must submit a report to the ECOSOC every four years.

    The Committee recommended special consultative status for:

    -- African Youth Network for Sustainable Development, an international organization based in Algeria, aiming, among other things, to work with young people in order to instill in them the ideals of the United Nations;

    -- NGO Health Committee, an international organization based in the United States with the purpose of promoting worldwide cooperation on issues of health, after a representative of the NGO clarified some questions about membership; and

    -- Action Canada for Population Development, a national organization based in Canada, which, among other things, wants to urge the Canadian Government to meet its international commitments, in particular those made at the International Conference on Population and Development in Cairo, although representatives of the Sudan and Iran made a reservation about references to “sexual rights”, as those rights were not mentioned in any human rights instrument.

    The Committee recommended roster status for Fondation Bertarelli, an international organization based in Switzerland, aiming to humanize the challenge of infertility.

    Pending issuance of the relevant documents, the Committee recommended special consultative status ad referendum for:

    -- Rehabilitation and Development Organization for Landless, an organization based in Bangladesh;

    -- World Youth Foundation, a national organization based in Malaysia, promoting youth programmes;

    -- Earth Society Foundation, Inc., an international organization based in the United States, seeking communication with all members of the human race to find ways to settle differences without resort to armed conflict, after Cuba’s representative noted the organization did not support unilateral coercive measures targeting a sovereign State;

    -- Eastern African Sub-Regional Support Initiative for the Advancement of Women, an international organization based in Uganda, aimed at monitoring implementation of the Beijing Platform for Action and the Africa Platform for Action;

    -- Indigenous Peoples Survival Foundation, an international organization based in the United States, aiming at promotion and protection of the rights of indigenous peoples;

    -- ODHIKAR, a national human rights organization based in Bangladesh;

    -- Iniciative Ciudadana !Basta Ya!, a national organization based in Spain, which demands and promotes the disbanding of Basque Fatherland and Liberty (ETA) without political compensation in return, and provides active support for victims of terrorism, regardless of the origin, form and intensity of such terrorism;

    -- CESVI, an international, secular, independent organization based in Italy, working for global solidarity;

    -- Sinji Shumeikai, an international organization based in Japan, aiming to promote quality of life; and

    -- Vivat International, an international organization based in the United States, aiming to promote cooperation with the United Nations, pending technical clarifications sought by Cuba’s representative.

    Also ad referendum, the Committee recommended roster status for Accademia Internazionale di Arte Moderna, an international organization based in Italy, aiming at promoting culture and making it available for everybody, in particularly to the poorest section of society; and Citizens’ Alliance for Consumer Protection of Korea, a national organization based in the Republic of Korea, working for sustainable development, social development and social justice through protection and promotion of consumer interests and sovereignty.

    The Committee deferred the application for consultative status from:

    -- Finnish Youth Cooperation, a national organization based in Finland, which offers educational services to local youth workers and organizations, pending answers to questions asked by China’s representative regarding its finances, membership and government influence;

    -- New Millennium Peace Foundation, an international organization based in the United States, which promotes and support projects that will lead to harmonious coexistence, lasting world peace and the elevation of human consciousness throughout the world, pending reply to a question posed by the representative of France;

    -- Watson Institute for International Studies, an international organization based in the United States, which supports of multidisciplinary research, teaching, and public education on international affairs, pending replies to questions asked by Cuba’s representative regarding its activities in the field of disarmament, sanctions and post-conflict situations, as well as about its membership and finances;

    -- Planned Parenthood Federation of Korea, a national organization based in the Republic of Korea, as China’s representative needed instructions from his capital, and questions were raised about granting consultative status to an organization that was part of an international organization with consultative status; and

    -- Ambedkar Centre for Justice and Peace, a United States-based international organization, after that NGO’s representative explained that the organization’s primary focus was to offer vocational training to the marginalized in India and to instil democratic values and the values of the United Nations.  India’s representative, however, first wanted to study answers given to written queries.

    Pending issuance of the relevant documents, the Committee also took note ad referendum of the new quadrennial reports from:  Brothers of Charity; International Fellowship of Reconciliation; Mouvement International ATD Quart Monde; Nigerian Centre for Research and Documentation; Shimin Gaikou Centre; and Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues, contained in document E/C.2/2003/2/Add.3; and China Disabled Persons; Chinese Immigrants Services, Inc.; Croatian World Congress; General Confederation of Trade Unions; International Union of Psychological Science; Ipas; Marangopoulos Foundation for Human Rights; Parliamentarians for Global Action; and Sisters of Mercy of the Americas, all contained in document E/C.2/2004/2/Add.4, with the understanding that the Secretariat would express China’s concerns to Chinese Immigrants Services, Inc. regarding its use of “Taiwan”.

    Also ad referendum, the Committee toke note of the new quadrennial reports from: Association for Progressive Communication; International Islamic Relief Organization; and New Human Rights contained in document E/C.2/2004/Add.6; and Charitable Society for Social Welfare; International Association of Penal Law; Médecins sans frontières; and World Human Dimension, contained in document E/C.2/2004/Add.7.

    The Committee took note of the previously deferred quadrennial reports from:  Human Rights Watch (document E/C.2/2004/CRP.2), although the representative of Cuba appealed to the organization to maintain balance on all issues pertaining to human rights; World Muslim Congress (document E/C.2/2003/2/Add.11); Interfaith International (document E/C.2/2003/2/Add.15); World Organization against Torture (document E/C.2/2003/2/Add.15); and Association Internationale des Mouvements Familiaux de Formation Rurale (document E/C.2/2003/Add.16).

    The Committee deferred taking note of the quadrennial reports from:  Islamic Relief, pending clarifications sought by the representative of India; International Association for Religious Freedom, pending a clarification requested by China’s representative regarding a reference to Taiwan; Deutsche Stiftung Weltbevolkerung, as a question was raised about its relationship to the German Government; Organización de Solidaridad de los Pueblos de Africa, Asia y América Latina, as Germany’s representative needed more time to study the text.

    The Committee members are Cameroon, Chile, China, Colombia, Côte d’Ivoire, Cuba, France, Germany, India, Iran, Peru, Pakistan, Romania, Russian Federation, Senegal, Sudan, Turkey, United States, and Zimbabwe.

    The Committee will meet again at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, 25 May, to consider, among other things, strengthening of the NGO Section of the Secretariat, new applications and requests for reclassification.

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