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Statement by Mr. Pham Quang Hieu, Permanent Mission of Viet Nam to the United Nations on behalf of ASEAN at the Six Committee of the UNGA 67th Session on Agenda Item 78 “United Nations Programme of Assistance in the Teaching, Study, Dissemination, and W
11-12-2012, 02:57 pm


Statement by Mr. Pham Quang Hieu, Permanent Mission of Viet Nam to the United Nations on behalf of ASEAN at the Six Committee of the UNGA 67th Session on Agenda Item 78 “United Nations Programme of Assistance in the Teaching, Study, Dissemination, and Wider Appreciation of International Law”.


Mr. Chairman, 

1.  I have the honour to deliver this statement on behalf of the Member States of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), namely Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Viet Nam. 

2. The achievements of the United Nations Programme of Assistance in the Teaching, Study, Dissemination and Wider Appreciation of International Law (the Program) in the past year are significant. ASEAN highly appreciates the Secretary-General of the United Nations for his continuing efforts to strengthen, expand and enhance international law training and dissemination activities within the framework of the Program.

3. Last year, the Office of Legal Affairs with its affiliates, namely the Codification Division, the Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea, the International Trade Law Division and Treaty Section and the United Nations Office in Geneva made commendable efforts to implement the Program through concrete activities such as the publication, preparation and dissemination of the publications and other information relating to international law, and the holding of fellowship programmes and regional courses in international law.


4. As the main body responsible for implementation of the Program of Assistance, the Codification Division has actively organized various activities to promote the dissemination of international law, namely through  the International Law Fellowship Program, in which fellows attend special seminars and study visits with the cooperation of the International Court of Justice and the Hague Academy of international law.  


5. Among others, we have seen the remarkable expansion of the United Nations Audiovisual Library of International Law and efforts to make  electronic materials more accessible to the wider global audience. ASEAN considers the Library a major contribution to the teaching and dissemination of international law around the world. Nowadays, the use of information communications technology such as web-based electronic research, web-accessible documents, and the digitization of audio and visual files have  significantly bridged the knowledge and information gap in international law. With regard to the publications, ASEAN wishes to express its satisfaction with the efforts of the Codification Division and other Divisions on its desktop publishing program and on-line publications aimed at further international law dissemination.


6. ASEAN is likewise encouraged by several positive developments that move the Program towards a deeper engagement with the UN Members, especially through the organization of regional courses, which is considered an important component of the Program.  In November this year, Thailand, a member state of ASEAN, in cooperation with the Codification Division will host a regional course in international law for three weeks in Bangkok, during which participants from the region will benefit from high-quality training by leading scholars and practitioners on a broad range of core subjects of international law, as well as specific subjects of particular interest to the countries in Asia. This will be the fourth time an ASEAN Member State holds the regional course in international law (Thailand in 1986 and 2005; the Philippines in 1969). Carrying those above-mentioned activities clearly demonstrates the ASEAN’s firm commitment to further support the United Nations Programme of Assistance.   


7. Despite those encouraging results, Mr. Chairman, it is recognized that the implementation of this Program in the period 2012 - 2013 is now facing many difficulties including the problem of financial and other resource constraints. Those difficulties would seriously hinder the success of the Program in the near future, if they are not sufficiently addressed by all the Member States as well as other actors. In this regard, ASEAN calls for and invites UN members, universities, institutions and research centers, philanthropic foundations and other actors to consider making voluntary contributions either by providing financial or any other available means to the Program. While ASEAN appreciates the value of voluntary contributions, which have assisted in enabling the activities under the Program to be successfully carried out over the years, ASEAN feels that it is necessary for the Program to be provided adequate financial resources under the next and future bienniums.  


Mr. Chairman,


8. Better knowledge of international law will surely serve to strengthen peace and security, promote friendly relations between the States and enhance the rule of law at national and international levels.  With these in mind, ASEAN attaches great importance of implementing the Program and hopes that the Program’s work in promoting the dissemination and appreciation of International Law will meet greater success in the years to come.


I thank you, Mr. Chairman.


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