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GENERAL ASSEMBLY HIGHLIGHTS

The General Assembly began consideration of Agenda Item 158 on the International Conference on Population and Development on Thursday, 17 November 1994. While the debate was held in the Plenary, the action on this item was taken in the Second Committee. Delegates had before them the report of the ICPD, as contained in documents A/CONF.171/13 and A/CONF.171/13/Add. 1.

During the course of the two-day debate, delegates praised the ICPD for its comprehensive treatment of population and development, which represented the first time that an international conference on population has not focused on demographics. Furthermore, delegates expressed satisfaction with the advances made in the Programme of Action with regard to the role of NGOs, the empowerment of women, reproductive health, reproductive rights and treatment of unsafe abortion as a public health issue. While delegates stressed the need for effective follow-up to the Conference, the majority did not think that any new UN institutions should be established, but rather the UN Commission on Population, the Population Division of the UN Secretariat and UNFPA should be strengthened.

The following is a summary of the two-day debate.