Yearbook of the United Nations, 2003. Part 1, Political and security questions. Chapter 8, Other political and security questions
The United Nations continued in 2003 to consider political and security questions relating to the Organization's efforts to support democratization worldwide, the promotion of decolonization, public information activities and the peaceful uses of outer space. The Fifth International Conference of New or Restored Democracies, held in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, in September, adopted the Ulaanbaatar Declaration and Plan of Action, which outlined benchmark principles for democratic Government, committed participating Member States to strengthening democracy at the national, regional and international levels, and made recommendations for strengthening the Conference's Follow-up Mechanism. The Special Committee on the Situation with regard to the Implementation of the Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples continued to review progress in implementing the 1960 Declaration, particularly the exercise of self-determination by the remaining Non-Self-Governing Territories. The General Assembly requested the Special Committee to continue to seek suitable means for the immediate and full implementation of the Declaration and to carry out actions approved by the Assembly regarding the International Decade for the Eradication of Colonialism (1990-2000) and the Second International Decade (2001-2010). The Committee on Information continued its comprehensive review of the management and operation of the Department of Public Information (DPI), based on a number of reports submitted by the Secretary-General. In that regard, as part of a continuing process of departmental reform, a new operating model for DPI and a new organizational structure were instituted, comprising a Strategic Communications Division, a News and Media Division and an Outreach Division. The rationalization of the network of United Nations information centres around regional hubs was initiated with the creation of a Western European hub. The Department continued to develop and enhance the UN web site in all official languages. To improve the management of UN libraries, the Steering Committee for the Modernization and Integrated Management of United Nations Libraries was established in January, with the objective of developing policies and coordinating operations among all UN libraries. In a December resolution on developments in information and telecommunications, the Assembly called on Member States to promote the consideration of existing and potential threats in the field of information security. Regarding the role of science and technology in the context of international security, the Assembly, in another December resolution, encouraged UN bodies to contribute, within existing mandates, to promoting the application of science and technology for peaceful purposes. Action teams established in 2001 to implement the recommendations of the Third (1999) United Nations Conference on the Exploration and Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (UNISPACE III) reported on progress in their work; five of the teams completed their mandates. In December, the Assembly decided to review in 2004 progress in the implementation of the UNISPACE III recommendations. In January, the United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation held its fifty-first session, which had been postponed from 2002 due to a budget shortfall.
Yearbook of the United Nations, 2003. v. 57; Vol. 57
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