STATEMENT ON BEHALF OF THE GROUP OF 77 AND CHINA BY THE DELEGATION OF THE REPUBLIC OF CUBA IN THE SIXTH COMMITTEE OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY UNDER AGENDA ITEM 78, "UNITED NATIONS PROGRAMME OF ASSISTANCE IN THE TEACHING, STUDY, DISSEMINATION AND WIDER APPRECIATION OF INTERNATIONAL LAW" (New York, 19 October 2023)
I have the honour to deliver this statement on behalf of the Group of 77 and China under Agenda Item 78: "United Nations Programme of Assistance in the Teaching, Study, Dissemination and Wider Appreciation of International Law".
I would also like to express the Group's appreciation for the members of the Advisory Committee on the United Nations Programme of Assistance in the Teaching, Study, Dissemination and Wider Appreciation of International Law and its Chair, H.E. Harold Adlai Agyeman, Permanent Representative of Ghana to the United Nations. We also commend the Codification Division of the Office of Legal Affairs for their continued efforts to implement the Programme of Assistance as well as recognize the contribution of the Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea (DOALOS).
The Group of 77 and China reaffirms its support for the Programme of Assistance which serves as an effective means of strengthening international peace and security and promoting friendly relations and cooperation among States through the dissemination of international law. More than 50 years after its establishment, the Programme continues to be relevant in furthering the objectives of the United Nations by training generations of specialists, particularly those from the developing countries, in the field of international law. The Group of 77 and China appreciates the necessary resources that are budgeted for the administration of the Programme and reiterates its call for the continued funding of the Programme in years to come. Such funding remains essential for conducting the International Law Fellowship Programme and the United Nations Regional Courses in International Law; issuing publications; developing and maintaining the United Nations Audiovisual Library of International Law; and for the award of the Hamilton Shirley Amerasinghe Memorial Fellowship on the Law of the Sea. These capacity-building activities help to improve the participation of developing countries in the multilateral arena. We also express our sincere appreciation to all Member States that have made financial and in-kind contributions to ensure the continued success of the Programme of Assistance.
The Group of G77 and China welcomes that, during the reporting period, the Regional Course in International Law for Latin America and the Caribbean, was held at the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) in Santiago from 8 to 30 May 2023, for Asia-Pacific was held at the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific in Bangkok from 14 November to 7 December 2022, and for Africa it was held at the Economic Commission for Africa in Addis Ababa from 20 February to 14 March 2023. In this regard, the Group also welcomes the efforts of the Codification Division to re-establish the conduct of the above courses in person, following the period of the COVID 19 pandemic which in some cases made it impossible to conduct them. The Group also notes with satisfaction the online regional workshops on the peaceful settlement of international disputes organized and facilitated by the Codification Division during this time period and the International Law Fellowship Programme was also held in The Hague from 3 July to 4 August 2023.
The importance and utility of the Audiovisual Library of International Law cannot be overstated. It continues to provide virtual high-quality training to an unlimited number of individuals around the world free of charge through the internet. The Group of 77 and China also supports the off-site recording sessions undertaken by the Codification Division in various locations in order to promote a broader geographical and linguistic representation of the recorded lectures and to record lecturers who are unable to travel to New York. We also commend the Codification Division for its efforts to facilitate access to the lectures for users with limited high-speed Internet on computers and mobile devices through the Library podcast.
We applaud the efforts of the Office of Legal Affairs to promote knowledge of international law in an inclusive manner and encourage its continued outreach to Member States to inform them of how to access and use available resources.
The Group reiterates the importance of the Programme of Assistance in achieving SDG 16, more particularly, Target 16.3 which calls for the promotion of the rule of law at the national and international levels. The training activities under the Programme will ensure greater dissemination of international law and, ultimately, strengthen the rule of law.
I thank you.