Yearbook of the United Nations, 2007. Part 1, Political and security questions. Chapter 8, Other political and security questions
In 2007, the United Nations continued to consider political and security questions relating to its efforts to support democratization worldwide, the promotion of decolonization, the peaceful uses of outer space and the Organization's public information activities. Highlighting the need to continue promoting democratization and the importance of action-oriented follow-up to the Sixth (2006) International Conference of New or Restored Democracies, the General Assembly decided to observe, on 15 September of each year, the International Day of Democracy. The Advisory Board, established in 2006 to assist the Chairman of the New or Restored Democracies Movement to implement Conference decisions, held its first and second sessions in April and September, respectively. The zone of peace and cooperation of the South Atlantic held its sixth ministerial meeting in June; the meeting adopted the Luanda Final Declaration and Plan of Action, which included activities related to economic cooperation and poverty eradication. The Ad Hoc Committee on the Indian Ocean met in July to consider approaches for achieving the goals of the 1971 Declaration of the Indian Ocean as a Zone of Peace. In a December resolution on the Zone, the Assembly reiterated its conviction that the participation of all permanent Security Council members and the major maritime users of the Indian Ocean in the work of the Ad Hoc Committee would facilitate the development of a mutually beneficial dialogue to advance peace, security and stability in that region. 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 (NSGTs). During the year, the Special Committee organized a Caribbean regional seminar in Saint George's, Granada, as part of its efforts to implement the plan of action for the Second International Decade for the Eradication of Colonialism (2001-2010). In Gibraltar, a new constitution entered into force on 2 January, following its approval by the people of that Territory in a 2006 referendum. While the United Kingdom and Gibraltar agreed that the new constitution established a modern and mature relationship between them, Spain said that it amounted to no more than a reform of the colonial administration. In the New Zealand–administered Territory of Tokelau, an October referendum to determine the Territory's future status—the second held in as many years—again failed to produce the two-thirds majority of votes required for a change of status. The Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space considered the implementation of the recommendations of the Third (1999) United Nations Conference on the Exploration and Peaceful Uses of Outer Space. Its two subcommittees, one of which dealt with scientific and technical matters and the other with legal issues, continued their work. In December, the Assembly endorsed the 2008-2009 work plan for the United Nations Platform for Space-based Information for Disaster Management and Emergency Response. The International Heliophysical Year was celebrated in 2007, marking the fiftieth anniversary of the International Geophysical Year (1957). The United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation held its fifty-fourth session. In a December resolution on developments in information and telecommunications in the context of international security, the Assembly called on Member States to further promote the consideration of existing and potential threats in the field of information security, as well as possible measures to limit emerging threats. The Committee on Information continued to review the management and operation of the UN Department of Public Information (DPI). At its April/May session, the Committee considered reports by the Secretary-General on several DPI activities, including those of the United Nations information centres, which had emerged as crucial players in promoting UN priority issues at the national level. Regarding the development of UN websites, the Secretary-General stated that, as at August, all DPI field offices had functional websites delivering UN information in 33 languages.
Yearbook of the United Nations, 2007. v. 61; Vol. 61
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