Press Releases

    22 July 2005

    UN Yearbook for 2003, Available Soon, Provides Overview of Organization’s Activities

    NEW YORK, 21 July (UN Headquarters) -- The fifty-seventh volume of the Yearbook of the United Nations, covering the year 2003, has been published by the Department of Public Information (DPI).  This unique publication, which chronicles all the major activities undertaken in the United Nations system, is the primary comprehensive and authoritative reference work on the United Nations and is widely consulted by diplomats, government officials, scholars, journalists and others with a serious interest in international and United Nations affairs.

    The 2003 edition, which is fully indexed and reproduces in their entirety the texts of, and votes on, all major General Assembly, Security Council and Economic and Social Council resolutions and decisions, comprises 52 chapters dealing with political and security questions; human rights; economic and social questions; legal questions; institutional, administrative and budgetary questions; and intergovernmental organizations related to the United Nations.

    Highlights include the rift in the Security Council over the use of force by a United States-led coalition against Iraq because of its alleged retention of banned weapons of mass destruction; the terrorist attack on the Organization’s headquarters in Baghdad; the establishment by the Secretary-General of the High-level Panel on Threats, Challenges and Change; and the Security Council’s adoption of a declaration on combating terrorism.  Also covered is the examination by the Council and the Assembly of ways to promote peace and security in Africa, especially in the Great Lakes area and West Africa.

    The ongoing work of over 45,000 military and civilian personnel deployed in 13 United Nations peacekeeping missions around the world is described, as is the decision by the Assembly and the Secretary-General to donate their shares of the 2001 Nobel Peace Prize to a memorial fund to facilitate the education of children of United Nations civilian personnel killed in the line of duty.  The continued focus of both the Council and the Assembly on the prevention and resolution of conflict and the provision of assistance to countries emerging from conflict is also chronicled, together with the Assembly’s September open-ended interactive dialogue on the role of civil society in the prevention of armed conflict.

    The 2003 Yearbook also provides full coverage of United Nations efforts to address the armed conflicts that continued to beset several African countries, including Côte d’Ivoire, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Eritrea and Ethiopia, and the Mano River Union countries (Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone), and the Security Council missions to the Great Lakes area and West Africa to invigorate faltering peace processes.  It further describes the Organization’s post-conflict efforts, through 15 political and peacebuilding missions, including those in Angola, Burundi, Central African Republic and Rwanda.

    Other important developments described include:  continued aid to Afghanistan and Timor-Leste in their national reconstruction efforts, assistance to the Kosovo province of Serbia and Montenegro in building a modern and multiethnic society and the attempts by the Quartet (the Russian Federation, the United States, the European Union and the United Nations) and the Security Council to restart peace talks between Israel and Palestine, and the efforts of the Secretary-General to resolve the Cyprus problem.

    The Yearbook reports on the entry into force of the International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families and the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime, together with its Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Woman and Children, and on the Assembly’s adoption of the United Nations Convention against Corruption.

    The volume’s coverage of United Nations work with regard to economic and social concerns focuses on efforts to realize the Millennium Development Goals, adopted by the Millennium Summit in 2000, particularly the goal of halving by 2015 the number of people living in extreme poverty, and the international conferences that took action on the special needs of landlocked developing countries and their transit neighbours and on establishing the foundations for an information society for all.  It also covers the observance of the International Year of Freshwater, the Assembly’s proclamation of the International Decade for Action, “Water for Life” (2005-2015), and the Organization’s contribution towards helping to stem the AIDS pandemic.

    In general, the 2003 edition of the Yearbook of the United Nations provides a comprehensive account of United Nations efforts to address pressing global problems and strengthen international cooperation.

    Note: The Yearbook of the United Nations 2003 will soon be available for $150 (Sales No. E.05.I.1, ISBN 92-1-100905-7) from United Nations Publications, 2 United Nations Plaza, Room DC2-853, New York, NY 10017, USA (tel.:  800-253-9646 or 212-963-8302, fax:  212-963-3489, e-mail: or from Section des Ventes et Commercialisation, Bureau E-4, Palais des Nations, CH-1211 Geneva 10, Switzerland. (tel.:  41-22-917-2614, fax:  41-22-917-0027, e-mail:  The Yearbook and over 4,000 other titles from United Nations Publications can be purchased online at .

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