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50TH SESSION OF THE UN GENERAL ASSEMBLY

The 50th United Nations General Assembly began its consideration of Agenda Item 96(a), "Environment and Sustainable Development: Implementation of Decisions and Recommendations of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development," on Monday, 30 October 1995. In connection with this item, the General Assembly had before it a number of documents, including the report of the Secretary-General on desertification and drought (A/50/347), and a note by the Secretary-General transmitting the reports of the Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee for the Elaboration of an International Convention to Combat Desertification (INCD) on its sixth and seventh sessions (A/50/74 and Add.1).

The resolution adopted by the UN General Assembly decides that: the INCD will continue to prepare for the first session of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention and, for this purpose, will have two sessions in 1996, each of up to two weeks duration. The eighth session is to be held in Geneva from 5-16 February and the ninth session in New York from 3-13 September. The resolution also decides to convene the tenth session of the INCD in New York from 6-17 January 1997 and, pending the entry into force of the Convention, to convene as necessary a further session in 1997, of up to two weeks duration. The exact date and venue shall be determined at a later stage. Upon entry into force of the Convention, a session of the Conference of the Parties will be convened in the second and third weeks of June 1997 or, alternatively, in the second and third weeks of August 1997. The exact dates and venue will be determined at a later stage.

The resolution also: requests all countries, the UN system, appropriate scientific and business communities, trade unions, relevant NGOs and other interested groups to take action for the prompt implementation of the Convention and its relevant regional annexes upon entry into force; urges all countries and relevant actors to take actions to implement the resolution on Urgent Action for Africa; decides that the work of the INCD and the Interim Secretariat will continue to be funded through existing UN budgetary resources; and urges States and interested organizations to contribute to the Trust Fund for the Secretariat and the Special Voluntary Fund for the participation of developing countries. The resolution welcomes the arrangements concluded between the Interim Secretariat and the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) to support activities in affected developing countries and invites the Interim Secretariat to conclude similar arrangements with other relevant organizations, such as UNDP, UNEP, FAO and UNESCO.

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