19 July 2006

Disarmament Committee Elects Mona Juul of Norway Chairperson

NEW YORK, 18 July (UN Headquarters) -- The First Committee (Disarmament and International Security) opened briefly this morning to elect its Chairperson for the sixty-first General Assembly session, as well as two Vice-Chairpersons and a Rapporteur.

Elected by acclamation to the post of Chairperson was Mona Juul of Norway, who told the Committee members that disarmament and non-proliferation were priorities of her Government.  Everyone stood to gain when nations worked together to address the related challenges.  She hoped for an active and engaged United Nations, towards which the General Assembly had an essential role to play in promoting international peace and security.  The First Committee (Disarmament and International Security had a unique task, and she valued its work highly.

She said she looked forward to making a contribution as Chairperson.  Given the body's improved working methods, she hoped to build on the work of her predecessor, in order for the Committee to work as effectively as possible in giving its full attention to the crucial issues before it.  She would maintain frequent contacts with regional groups, both in New York and Geneva, as she prepared for the upcoming session.

The following members were elected, also by acclamation, as Vice-Chairpersons:  Andy Rachmianto (Indonesia) from the Group of Asian States, and Bosjan Malovrh (Slovenia) from the Group of Latin American and Caribbean States.  Frederico Perazza (Uruguay) was elected to the post of Rapporteur.

In July 2002, an amendment to General Assembly resolution 56/509, and with rule 103 in force, followed by the adoption in December 2003 of resolution 58/126, the General Assembly bodies, including its six main Committees, now elect their Chairpersons and Bureaux before the start of the Assembly's session in September.

The outgoing members of the Bureau of the sixtieth Assembly session were:  Chairman Choi Young-jin (Republic of Korea), and Vice-Chairpersons Gabriela Martinic (Argentina), Detlev Wolter (Germany) and Lofti Bouchaara (Morocco).  Elvina Jusufaj (Albania) served as Rapporteur.

The Committee will meet again at a date to be announced.

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